Portsmouth DPW Offers Fall Clean-up Suggestions

September 29, 2020

The arrival of the autumnal equinox and cooler weather are good reminders that now is a good time for residents to consider some fall clean-up suggestions that will assist the Department of Public Works with its preparations for winter.

As the DPW Trees & Greenery Division begins to wrap up its tree trimming to protect the urban forest from snow and ice damage and starts putting the City’s gardens to bed for the winter, DPW asks those who tend Adopt-A-Spot gardens to do the same. Residents can also assist by weeding sidewalks and curbs by their properties to make snow-clearing more efficient and to reduce the damage weeds cause in the pavement freeze-thaw cycle.

As residents rake and clear their own properties, they can place bagged leaves (in paper or clearly marked biodegradable bags) and bulky waste like branches at the curb for normal trash pickup. Branches should be no longer than 4-feet and no bigger in diameter than five inches. Brush should be tied in manageable bundles no bigger than a foot in diameter and weighing less than 50 pounds, The DPW Stormwater Division reminds people that leaves should never be dumped near bodies of water or wetlands as the leaves choke the flow of water and limit the natural oxygenation process, thereby harming fish and the rest of the aquatic environment. Mowed leaves are also great mulch for the lawn, adding nutrients for wintering-over.

The Portsmouth DPW Recycling Center also accepts leaves and yard waste. For disposing of household and garage chemicals, on Saturday, October 3, DPW hosts the second of its two Household Hazardous Waste Collection Days. Residents from Portsmouth, Newington and Greenland (ID required) can bring acceptable items to the Recycling Center between 8 am and 12 noon for no-touch, drive-through service. Residents remain in their vehicles and pull through the Public Works garage, where staff will remove disposable items from car trunks. All City staff will be wearing masks and will be practicing physical distancing.

For more suggestions on other sustainable practices including “Rake It or Leave It” visit: