Yard Care Maintenance

Our goal is to provide practical advice that enhances your yard, supports the town's water conservation efforts, and aligns with provincial guidelines.


Water Conservation: What You Can Do

All Albertans are asked to consider ways to use water wisely. Conserving water is always a good habit and it can help your community, as well as Albertans downstream from you.

If looking for ways to save water, there are small steps that everyone can take. Learn more about water conservation or get ideas for ways to save from the Alberta Government's water conservation suggestions.

Or, you can check out the efforts the Town of Olds is making to conserve water.

Reasons to save water:

  • Save money - using less water will reduce your water bill, thereby reducing your sanitary charge and the other bill to heat your water.
  • In a growing community, if everyone uses less water, you can reduce the frequency for costly new or upgraded water and sewer facilities and/or infrastructure.
  • Using less water and energy will generate a smaller carbon footprint

Residential Branch Dump FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About The Residential Branch Dump

What is the Residential Branch Dump?

The Residential Branch Dump is a designated site at the Operations Centre where Olds residents can dispose of branches, small trees, shrubs, and leaves. This facility helps manage yard waste responsibly and keeps our community tidy.

 

When is the Branch Dump open?

LOCATION:  Operations Centre - 3501 70th Ave

HOURS: The facility operates from 10 AM to 3 PM on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.

Please note that it is closed on very rainy days.

In operation from May 14 to the end of September 2024.

 

Who can use the Branch Dump?

This service is exclusively for the residents of Olds.

Please note this is not for commercial use.

 

What materials can I bring to the Branch Dump?

You can bring branches, small trees, shrubs, and leaves. Please ensure:

  • Small trees, shrubs, and branches that have a caliper of 6 inches or less—about the diameter of a toilet paper roll or smaller.
  • Leaves should be dry and not mixed with other materials.
  • A minimal amount of grass or other organic matter is acceptable, however, the intent is to burn the pile at the end of the season, so we want to minimize materials which will cause issues during that process – that includes large volumes of wet organic and/or inorganic materials. 

 

How much can I bring at once?

You can bring up to a half-ton per trip, and multiple trips are allowed. Generally, if it fits in the bed of a pickup truck, we can accept it.

 

When should I use the Branch Dump vs. my Residential Grass Bin?

Please use your Residential Grass Bin for:

  • Grass clippings.
  • Small branches (about the size of your index finger or smaller).
  • Organic kitchen waste.

 

Is there assistance available at the Branch Dump?

Yes, the Branch Dump is staffed by a summer student who will help maintain the pile and provide direction and assistance as needed.

 

What happens in case of rainy days?

The Branch Dump is closed on rainy days to ensure the safety and manageability of the waste processing.

 

Feel free to contact us if you have more questions or need further assistance!

Check out our official News Release: Town of Olds Launches Residential Branch Dump for Sustainable Yard Waste Management

Home Composter Rebate Program

Composting contributes to environmental sustainability by reducing the amount of organic waste sent to landfills, where it would generate methane, a potent greenhouse gas.
Additionally, composting enriches soil, fostering healthier plant growth and reducing the need for chemical fertilizers, thus promoting biodiversity. This nutrient-rich compost also helps retain moisture in the soil, aiding in water conservation efforts by reducing the need for irrigation, particularly in areas prone to drought.
Overall, composting plays a crucial role in mitigating climate change and conserving water resources.

How it Works

STEP 1 - Determine Eligibility
PLEASE NOTE: compost bins purchased prior to April 22, 2024 are not eligible for rebates.
Eligible Applicants Must:

  • Be a Town of Olds Resident
  • Have a Town of Olds Utility Account

STEP 2 - Purchase Compost Bin
Eligible Compost Bins:

  • Must be purchased new.

STEP 3 - Application for Rebate
To Receive your Rebate - Send in, or, bring in the following:

Incomplete applications will be returned and must be resubmitted.

Important Details:

  • One application form must be completed for each new compost bin rebate.
  • Maximum of one compost bin rebate per residence.
  • Compost Bin Rebates are processed on a first-come, first-processed basis.
  • The rebate amount is 50% up to $50.

Why Have A Compost Bin?

  • Reduce the amount organic waste sent to landfills
  • Soil Enrichment with essential nutrients
  • Improves soil structure!

 

Check out other Rebate Programs for Rain Barrels and Toilet Replacement!

Rain Barrel Rebate Program

Inexpensive and easy to install, rain barrels are a great way to conserve Town of Olds’ drinking water supply. Rain barrels collect and store rainwater that runs off your roof. This water can be used in your yard, reducing the need to use treated water from the tap.
The average rain barrel holds approximately 200 litres of water and depending on precipitation, will fill about three times in a typical summer, which saves about 600 litres of water! Savings will vary based on use of water in the rain barrel and the amount of rain received.

How It Works

STEP 1 - Determine Eligibility
PLEASE NOTE: rain barrels purchased prior to April 22, 2024 are not eligible for rebates.
Eligible Applicants Must:

  • Be a Town of Olds Resident
  • Have a Town of Olds Utility Account

STEP 2 - Purchase New Rain Barrel
Eligible Rain Barrels:

  • Must be purchased new.
  • Any type of container used to catch water flowing from a downspout.

STEP 3 - Application for Rebate
To Receive your Rebate - Send in, or, bring in the following:

Incomplete applications will be returned and must be resubmitted.

Important Details:

  • One application form must be completed for each new rain barrel rebate.
  • Maximum of one rain barrel rebate per residence.
  • Rain barrel rebates are processed on a first-come, first-processed basis.
  • The rebate amount is 50% up to $50.

Why Have A Rain Barrel?

  • Preserve the environment!
  • Save money on water bills!
  • Receive a Rain Barrel Rebate!

 

Check out other Rebate Programs for Compost Bins and Toilet Replacement!

Yard Maintenance Tips

These tips below, though still in development, offer insights for creating more drought-resistant landscapes, optimizing water use, and contributing to a healthier environment for our community. 

Tips To Help Grass Thrive

Studies have shown that watering less creates stronger grass but some other tips for great grass are:

  • Only water when you need to. An established lawn only requires about one inch of water a week.
    TIP: place a Frisbee® upside down on the lawn and only water until it’s full.
  • Leave grass 3” long to prevent scorching and water evaporation
  • Grass-cycle – mulching leaves your grass clippings on the lawn, providing extra nutrients and helps to retain moisture.

 


Leave Grass Clippings on the Lawn (PDF)

Leaving grass clippings on the lawn after mowing is the natural way of breaking down grass, also known as grass-cycling or grass mulching. The next time you mow, try leaving clippings on the lawn for a natural way to get a green and lush yard.

It’s good for your lawn:

  • Short clippings will quickly break down, returning nutrients to the soil.
  • Clippings help protect the soil and increase soil health by keeping moisture in the ground.

It’s good for you:

  • Save time and energy by not collecting and disposing of clippings in the green bin, bagging in paper yard waste bags and lifting bags of grass.
  • Save money by reducing the need for paper yard waste bags.
  • Save water and fertilizer, as your lawn will stay more hydrated from the clippings.

It’s good for the environment:

  • Saves space in your green bin, so the bin doesn’t fill up as quickly and reduces the need for paper yard waste bags.
  • Reduces the amount of waste put out for collection and processing.
  • Grass clippings are accepted in the compost facility but are even more beneficial when left on your lawn.

How to leave clippings on the lawn

You don’t need a special lawn mower – just remove the bag and mow to leave clippings on the lawn.
Cut grass when the surface is dry and keep mower blades sharp. Follow the 1/3 rule: mow your lawn often enough so that no more than 1/3 of your grass is cut. You may need to raise the height of your mower. This frequent mowing will produce short clippings that will break down quickly.

Mulching mowers cut grass blades into small pieces, allowing the clippings to settle into your lawn without clumping. They are sold at most yard and garden stores, nurseries, and home supply stores.

Put grass clippings in your green bin for composting.

  • Put grass clippings in loose in bin; or
  • Use a paper yard waste bag to prevent clippings sticking to the bin.

 


Be a Pollinator Pal (PDF)

Consider being a pollinator pal by employing some or all the suggestions listed below:

 

  1. Plant flowers that bloom throughout the spring and summer and into the fall.
  2. Plant flowers and shrubs to create a green corridor connecting with your neighbor’s plantings or natural areas. Even plants in pots on balconies and decks will work.
  3. Provide nesting sites such as bare soil, rotting wood, stacked rocks, even water, to encourage pollinators to move into your yard.
  4. Reduce or eliminate pesticides and herbicides. If you must use them, spray pesticides at nigh
    t when pollinators are less active.
  5. Mow less! Consider leaving a portion of your landscape untended to act as a natural area for pollinators, birds, and other wildlife.
  6. While out in nature, act with care. A misplaced footstep on bare ground or in fallen leaves can destroy a nest and its inhabitants. If you pick up a rock or log, put it back where you found it; you'll be putting the 'roof' back on something's home.