Composting Questions

Home composting yard materials and certain food scraps can provide valuable material for gardens and landscaping while reducing costs for off-site composting or disposal. Wisconsin law bans yard materials such as leaves, grass clippings, and branches less than 6" in diameter from landfills. Composting is a preferred alternative to burning such materials (which is also banned in many communities), and by doing it at home, residents can enjoy the benefits of the finished compost. Certain food scraps can also be easily composted with yard materials at home.

What to Compost

  • Yard materials
  • Vegetable and fruit scraps
  • Coffee grounds and filters
  • Tea bags
  • Nutshells
  • Eggshells
  • Clean, unwaxed paper, such as newspaper and cardboard

What Not to Compost

  • Animal manure (not pet waste)
  • Meat or fish scraps, bones, and packaging
  • Dairy products (milk, cheese, egg yolks, etc.)
  • Fats and oils or foods containing fats and oils
  • Pet waste
  • Diseased or insect-ridden plants
  • Highly invasive plants like garlic mustard, unless completely dry and without flowers or seeds.

Curbside Compost Collection

Wisconsin DNR Website

Common Backyard Composting

If you have any questions about composting or yard waste management, contact: 

Portage County Solid Waste Department 715-345-5970