Share this page Print

What goes in the green cart

All food, yard waste and pet waste can go in the green cart. If you're already backyard composting - keep it up and use your green cart for all the other food and yard materials that can't go in a backyard composter. Download​ a list of Green Cart acceptable materials.

Even small amounts add up, so remember to include the food from meal preparation, cleaning out the fridge and plate scrapings too. Learn how to collect food and yard waste on our Using Your Green Cart page.

If you're not sure whether an item can be composted or not, use our What Goes Where search tool to look it up and find out what to do.

Yes. Put these compostables into your green cart.

Plate scrapings
Plate Scrapings  

Meat, fish, poultry, shellfish and bones

Meat Fish Shellfish and Bones  
 
Fruits and vegetables Remove any stickers.
Fruits and Vegetables  
Bread, pasta, noodles, rice, beans, couscous, grains, crackers, cereal
Breads Noodles Rice Beans Grains  
 
Eggs, eggshells and dairy products (e.g. cheese, sour cream, etc.)
Eggshells Dairy Products  

Cooking oil, lard, shortening, butter, sauces, grease, dips, salad dressing, mayonnaise and gravy

Cooking oil and grease  
 
Pastries, cookies, cakes and muffins
Pastries Cookies Cakes Muffins  
Nuts, seeds, pits, chips, popcorn and candy
Nuts Seeds Chips Popcorn Candy  
 
Paper plates
Paper p  

Coffee grounds, coffee filters and tea bags

Coffee grounds  
 
Food-soiled paper towels, napkins and tissues
Paper towels, napkins and tissues  
 
Leaves and pine cones
Leaves and pinecones  

Plants and flowers

Plants Weeds  
 
Branches, twigs, and hedge prunings
Less than 15 cm in diameter and 1.25 m in length so it can fit inside the green cart
Branches and Prunings  
Grass clippings
and sod

You can also leave your grass clippings on the lawn to return valuable nutrients to your soil.

Grass Clippings and Sod  
 

Weeds

Weeds  
Garden soil, sand and untreated mulch
Soil  
 

Christmas trees
Trunks must be less than 15 cm in diameter and the tree cut down into 1.25 m lengths.

Christmas Trees  
Hay
Hay  
 

*Always fill your green cart first. Yard waste can be put loose inside the cart. If your green cart is full, use paper yard waste bags. Extra branches can also be tied in 1.25 m bundles with natural fibre string.

 

Dog waste and kitty litter (all varieties)
Must be collected in a certified compostable bag or paper bag.

Kitty litter  

Animal bedding
(e.g. from pet cages)
Must be collected in a certified compostable bag or paper bag.

Animal bedding  
 

Pet fur, hair or feathers

Pet hair  

Pet food and treats (including rawhide bones and birdseed)

Pet food and treats  
 
Cold barbeque or fireplace ashes
Must be collected in a certified compostable bag or paper bag.
Fireplace ashes  

Untreated lumber
Less than 15 cm in diameter and 1.25 m in length so it can fit inside the green cart. Wood must be free of nails, screws, etc.

Untreated lumber  
 
Wood shavings/
sawdust
Must be collected in a certified compostable bag or paper bag.
Wood shavings  
Wooden popsicle sticks, chopsticks and toothpicks
Popsicle Sticks  
 

Can meat, bones and pet waste be safely composted in the green cart?

There are no health and safety issues with putting meat, bones and pet waste in the green cart. During the in-vessel composting process the material reaches and maintains temperatures of at least 55 degrees Celsius, which kills any harmful bacteria. Learn more about the composting process.

No. Please keep these items OUT of your green cart.

  • No plastic, oxo-biodegradable or biodegradable bags. If using a bag, only use ​ certified compostable bags.
  • No diapers, wipes or sanitary products
  • No food or beverage packaging
  • No plastic plates or cutlery
  • No painted or treated wood
  • No fruit or vegetable stickers
​​