Whilst we all continue to spend more time at home, you may have additional cardboard and garden waste to recycle.

Following the advice on this page will help you to dispose of your waste, relieve pressure on our recycling and waste crews, and prevent Leicestershire County Council's Recycling and Household Waste Sites (tips) from becoming overwhelmed.

Please help wherever you can by disposing of your waste in the most environmentally friendly way, and avoid the black bin as much as possible.


Please consider the following options:

  • Store cardboard where possible, ready to recycle on your monthly collection. For your safety, keep cardboard dry and away from heaters, ovens and naked flames so that it does not catch fire. Flattening boxes will help take up less room. 
  • Reuse cardboard boxes for storage
  • Use cardboard for crafting with the kids - Just take a look at these 10 easy cardboard craft ideas. (Try to think about how the crafts can be taken apart and components recycled afterwards!)
  • Add cardboard to a compost heap to stop it becoming smelly or sludgy
  • Use cardboard sheets to clear weeds in a growing area of your garden! Find out how.
  • Try mulching!
  • Fill a bean trench - This can work especially well with thirsty runner beans! Dig the trench and line it with lots of torn cardboard then cover with soil. You can also add in grass clippings and some of the organic matter destined for your compost bin! 

Garden Waste


Composting is the best method for reusing your garden waste, whilst making a nutritious compost for your garden! Whether you choose to buy a compost bin or make your own compost heap, once it's set up you'll be able to compost grass cuttings, fruit and vegetable peelings, cardboard, annual weeds, leaves, hedge trimmings, prunings, straw, pet bedding and more.

Please take a look at our advice on how to get started, or watch the video below.

Simple Guide to Composting transcript (Word Document, 0.1 Mb)

Make your own mulch:

Mulching is a great way to provide nutrients for your plants, whilst locking in moisture and creating a natural barrier against weeds. Take a look at these organic mulches and how to make them from your garden waste.

Buy or make a wormery:

If you don't have space for a composter, a wormery is a great way to use kitchen scraps to make compost and fertiliser whilst saving space in your black bin!

If you choose to buy a wormery online, take a look at this guidance on getting set up. Or you could try making your own wormery - A fun and educational project to do with the kids!

Mowing the lawn:

When it comes to mowing the lawn, you could take one of two quite different approaches! Try mowing the lawn more frequently and allow the shorter clippings to fall back and disappear into the grass which will add moisture and nutrients for your grass.

On the flipside, you could mow the lawn less and let a mini meadow appear - wildlife will love it! If you have large grassy areas or lawns, why not let the grass grow and simply mow paths through it?

Make wildlife homes:

Make use of woody branches, stumps and stems whilst bringing wildlife into your garden. Bringing wildlife into your garden not only adds interest but can help to provide organic pest control - for example, beetles eat aphids, slugs and maggots.

You can even simply bundle up twigs and hollow stems and wedge them into walls, trees or in boxes to make resting and nesting areas for insects. Please remember that pruning and cutting branches in spring can disturb nesting birds - so be sure to check your area first.

Once you're all set up, get the kids to start a wildllife diary! Encourage them to record all the new insects and animals they spot in the garden.

Make your own plant supports

Long sturdy stems and twiggy branches can be use to support climbing plants and prop up any plant that have a tendancy to flop.

Burning garden waste

Please refrain from burning garden waste. Whilst we spend more time at home, it’s so important that everyone can access clean, fresh air in their gardens and into our houses. Please consider you may have neighbours who are self-isolating due to suspected or confirmed coronavirus and smoke can harm these people by exacerbating respiratory problems.

Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service recommend that wherever possible, you should bag and store garden waste safely – such as in an outbuilding or shed - until the recycling centres reopen or we resume garden waste collections.

Burning your waste should be a last resort. If you are still going to have a bonfire, please contact your local Fire Control team on 0116 263 4180 to let them know. This will stop them from mobilising crews to you unnecessarily. For the safety of yourself, your neighbours and wildlife, bonfires should be kept away from sheds, trees and fences and avoid the use of any accelerants, such as petrol. Do not leave fires unattended and have a bucket of water nearby.

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Last updated: Thu 1 April, 2021 @ 12:11