Recycling Your Grass Clippings

How To Stay On The Cutting Edge

THE URGENT NEED FOR "GRASS CYCLING": The United States is slowly but surely running out of landfill space. Many of the materials placed in landfills are recyclable. One significant solid waste material that does not have to go into a landfill and which is certainly recyclable is grass. You can be a part of the solution to our environmental problem by simply returning your grass clippings to your lawn! You'll not only help our environment, but you'll save time and money as well.

BENEFITS FROM "GRASS CYCLING": Research and demonstration lawns throughout the United States have shown that grass cycling benefits you and your lawn.


* Save the time and trouble of bagging
* Reduce the waste stream by 20-40% or more
* Reduce the need for fertilizer by 1/3
* Save gas and energy required to transport grass clippings to the landfill
* Save the cost for yard waste bags or cans
* Help maintain natural, healthy soil systems

GRASS CLIPPINGS DO NOT CAUSE THATCH: Contrary to popular belief, grass clippings do not cause thatch! Thatch is the remains of roots, dead leaf sheaths, and wood materials that decompose slowly. Grass clippings are about 85% water and decompose very rapidly, making your lawn more vigorous and durable.


  1. Mow when your grass is dry and 3" to 4" tall. Never cut it shorter than 2 to 2-1/2 inches in height. This will allow your lawn to have a larger and deeper root system - making a stronger defense against weeds and droughts.
  2. Use a sharp mower blade or a mulching mower if you have one. A sharp blade and frequent mowing (every 5 to 6 days) will mean finer clippings that will decompose quickly.
  3. Avoid over-fertilizing your lawn. Returning clippings to the lawn is like applying an extra application of fertilizer during the growing season.

USING GRASS CLIPPINGS IN THE YARD: It may be necessary to collect grass clippings if you mow frequently. Consider recycling the clippings in your yard by doing one of the following:

- Spread clippings over a layer of newspaper in the vegetable or flower garden.
- Use clippings as a mulch under bushes.
- Mix grass clippings with leaves and soil in a backyard compost pile.

For more information on composting contact:
St. Clair County Resource Recovery Office
6779 Smiths Creek Road, Smiths Creek, MI 48074
(810) 985-2443

Contact Information

Environmental Services Department
6779 Smiths Creek Road
Smiths Creek, MI 48074

Phone: Smiths Creek Landfill (810) 985-2443
Household Hazardous Waste     (810) 985-2443
Recycling (810) 985-2443
Fax: (810) 367-3062
Email: Environmental Services
Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday: 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Saturday: 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Solid Waste & Recycling Status: 

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