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Public Works
 | Green Waste Recycling Program

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Green Waste

Green Waste Recycling


Torrance residents with City sanitation service have green, or yard waste, collection as part of their program.  Materials will be recycled as mulch or compost.

In Torrance, approximately one-third of all residential waste is green waste - grass, leaves, weeds, and trimmings from bushes and trees. This large volume uses up valuble landfill space.  Yard waste in landfills generates methane gas and acidic leachate, both of which can be hazardous to the environment.  The high moisture content of green waste retards burning, which reduces the efficiency of waste-to-energy plants.

When separated from regular trash, green waste can be recycled into mulch or soil amendment.  By recycling green waste, we will save landfill space and provide a better use of this natural resource.  Plant waste recycles naturally, and the decomposed matrials form a rich, dark soil called humus or compost.  Humus returns nutrients to the sil, improves soil texture, and promotes new plant growth.

Please follow these directions to use the green waste container properly.

  • This container is only for green waste or yard trimming which include:

    Wood Chips

    Tree Branches  


    Garden Trimmings 

    Green Plants/Weeds

  • Do not place green waste in plastic bags - put it directly in the container.  Plastic bags cannot be recycled in the green waste program. 
  • Remove any metal or nails. 
  • Branches cannot exceed 4" (inches) in diameter or 4' (feet in length).
  • Large ice plant clusters and palm fronds/branches cannot be accepted in this container (they cannot be composted).  Place these items in the black refuse container. 
  • Do not place hot ashes, coals, flammable materials (such as oil, gas or paint) or any other hazardous materials in this container.
  • Do not place food waste or any kind, animal waste or any other refuse in this container.
  • Lumber of construction material of any kind is NOT considered green waste and cannot be put in the green waste container. 
  • Do not place liquids in this container.
  • Material should protrude from the top of the containers more than 2 or 3 feet.  Weight of the container and its contents cannot exceed 200 pounds.  Place this container for collection with your refuse (black) and recycling (grey) containers in the street on your assigned day of the week with the lid opening facing the street.  Place containers at least 18" apart, and at least 5 feet away from obstructions such as a car or lamp post.  
  • Please wash interior of container with water periodically. 

Note - You can leave your grass clippings on the lawn - it's a good source of nitrogen and acts as a fertilizer.  You can also recycle your green waste and food waste at home to create your own compost.  Go to to learn more. 

Recycle your Christmas trees any time in your green waste container. Cut up your green Christmas tree to meet green waste collection requirements.

For questions and additional information, please contact the Torrance Public Works Department at 310-781-6900.

For the current rate structure, click here.

To change container size or request additional containers, click here.