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Arlington County Leaf Collection Update

by ARLnow.com — November 23, 2011 at 2:05 pm 2,078 13 Comments

Arlington County’s incredibly detail-oriented vacuum leaf collection effort (see the county-produced video, above) is slightly behind schedule due to rainy weather.

Arlington is now planning to begin its first leaf collection pass in ‘Zone 4′ neighborhoods on Friday, while Zone 5 (out of five) will have to wait until next Wednesday. Zone 3 collections are still underway, the Arlington Department of Environmental Services said via Twitter this morning.

A second and final round of vacuum leaf collection will take place in December.

Leaf bag collections are still proceeding as normal, on the day after residents’ normal trash collection.

  • Arlington Mom

    Well maybe if they collected in the correct zones they would be on schedule. I live in zone 5 and have always had leaf collections the first week of Dec. Last Sat a truck came down my street vacuuming the little bit of leaves that were out there. I checked the website which still did not even show dates for zone 5 and called the hotline and there was no mention of my neighborhood on the message. This morning the county came by and put signs up saying the first leaf collections would take place November 30. So clearly last Saturday’s impromtu vacuum pick up was a mistake. That might explains why they are still working on zone 3.

  • jslanger

    As someone who grew up in AZ, this whole leaves falling off trees and needing collection still amuses me. :)

  • JimPB

    I enjoy the fallen leaves: for:
    – the contrast the fallen leaves provide from the boring snoburbia goft course green lawns.
    – the evoking memories of burrowing into massive piles of leaves and the crnch of dry leaves underfoot (children today may have technology that I could only have encountered in science-fiction, but they are missing some wonderful things that I had, like creating gigantic mounds of leaves and then building and plahing in them), and
    – enabling enrichment of the yard and garden soil by mowing the leaves into little pieces that readily break down and later importing leaf mulch for ground enrichment and weed control — the result, a rich soil that will be ab inheritance that will extend long beyond the life of the Rambler home (most here in North Arlington, when soild, are being demolished for new McMansions).

    • NorthArlingTim

      always had a mulching mower – battery powered. mulch them dang leaves! i never understood the big deal about leaves either… however, right now they are at least a half foot deep in my street, and nobody can park on the dang street now that none of us can see the parking lines!

  • Dorothy

    I grew up in Arlington and remember when we all burned our leaves each fall. I know, I know, air pollution and all that, but the thought of that wonderful smell of burning leaves all around the county evokes fond memories. As for collection, we have a terrible parking problem on my street already and the huge piles of leaves that have been accumulating for weeks now have still not been picked up……I hope the truck comes soon; some folks are parking on top if the large piles of leaves.

    • BlueLoom

      “I hope the truck comes soon; some folks are parking on top of the large piles of leaves.”

      This is dangerous. The hot undercarriage of the car can set the leaves on fire. People who park on top of piles of dried leaves may come back to find that their cars have turned into crispy critters.

    • LeaveLover

      When did it become illegal to burn leaves in Arlington? Or is it? What would happen if one burned them in a small, slow, well-monitored fire in one’s backyard?

      • drax

        It’s illegal in many cities because of air pollution.

  • Juanita de Talmas

    Arlington needs to take Global Warming in to account when they make these schedules. On the first round they made through my hood, most of the leaves were still green and on the trees!

  • reader

    They did half my street but not the other side. Seems quite inefficient. My street is now pink! That’s not on the legend….

  • Ren

    I know about the leaf mulch available for pickup, but does anyone know about the in-between steps or where it happens? My parents are embroiled in a leaf composting controversey in their suburb in PA, so I’m curious.

  • Tomas Butler IV

    Leaf vacuum collect seems a bit off this fall. Assuming that there is a plan, it appears to be not well executed. In my neighborhood, collection has been on-going for a week with vacuum trucks arriving to randomly pick up leaves from a couple of streets or random blocks here and there, and the trucks disappear for the day, return the next day with the same plan. In past years, the truck vacuumed leaves on street A, then street B, then street C, etc.

    If DES reads this post, please evaluate whether an orderly progression would be more efficient than the random approach. It would likely cut down on missed streets, repeats, unnecessary travel without vacuuming, and customer services calls for missed streets.

  • Arlington County Department of Environmental Services

    Mr. Butler:

    The leaf collection program is an important County service, and we welcome your feedback so we can incorporate it into next year’s program and schedule and to ensure we are working as efficiently as possible. To specifically address your concern regarding the leaf season collection schedule and program and service at your address, please contact Linda Brown at lkbrown@arlingtonva.us.

    Thank you,
    Arlington County Department of Environmental Services

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