Garden waste permit renewal

If you've already subscribed to our Garden waste service and your brown bin permit is nearing expiry, please see Garden waste permit renewal for information on how to renew.

Garden wasteAs your local council, we have a duty to collect your recycling and rubbish, but not your garden waste. We have to keep costs as low as we can for council taxpayers, so we’ve started charging to collect garden waste, which is fairer as only those people who choose to benefit from the service pay for it.

You can choose either:

  • an annual subscription using brown bins, which we will empty once every two weeks. We will request payment up front for a 12-month period (terms and conditions apply, see Garden Waste Terms and Conditions); we'll then send you full details and a permit for your bin; or
  • “pay-as-you-go” using compostable sacks. You can buy a roll of sacks, use them as and when you have enough garden waste and put them out on the kerbside for collection on the correct day, see Where to buy compostable sacks

What we can collect

Yes please: No thanks:
  • Grass cuttings
  • Hedge cuttings
  • Plants , shrubs and weeds
  • Cut flowers
  • Leaves
  • Twigs and small branches (less than 15cm/6” diameter)
  • Food waste
  • Cardboard
  • Pet waste and faeces
  • Bricks, soil and rubble
  • Large branches
  • Plastic bags and plant pots
  • Landfill waste or recycling                    

Charges for 2016/17




240-litre brown bin

£48 per year

Yearly subscription

Emptied every other week

Standard-size bin

140-litre brown bin

£36 per year

Yearly subscription

Emptied every other week

“Slimline” bin

120-litre compostable sacks

£13 per roll of 10 sacks

See Where to buy compostable sacks

No yearly subscription

Buy and use what you need

How to subscribe - new customers

If you've not previously subscribed to our garden waste service, please use our online form - New customer brown bin subscription.

How to renew - existing customers

If you've already subscribed and your brown bin permit is nearing expiry, please see Garden waste permit renewal for information on how to renew.

Frequently asked questions:

Unlike recycling, food and landfill waste, we don't have a duty to collect garden waste. By introducing a charge, this helps keep our council tax charges down and is fairer: only those people who benefit from the service pay for it. Many other councils also make a charge or don't offer the service at all.

No. It's very expensive to send waste to landfill and far better for the environment to compost green waste. As an alternative to having your garden waste collected, you could consider home composting or taking it to a recycling centre instead, see Find a recycling centre.

A small amount of hay and straw is acceptable but it must not contain any shredded paper, cardboard or faeces. Any soiled pet waste must go in the black sack refuse for landfill waste.

You can buy “pay as you go” council garden waste sacks which you can put out on the right day for garden waste collection. Please note, we only accept council garden waste sacks and no other form of sack. Sacks full of garden waste that are not identifiable as council-purchased sacks will not be collected. See Where to buy compostable sacks.

If you decide to opt-out completely, you can take your garden waste to your local recycling centre, see Find a recycling centre.

Alternatively, you could undertake composting at home, see Buy a home composter or start a local community composting group by contacting Devon Community Composting Network.

Yes, as long as it is put out for collection outside the property of the householder who's subscribed to the service.

Yes. Each additional bin will be charged at the yearly rate. 

Yes, if you have a large garden but don't want to pay subscriptions for more than one bin, you can also buy “pay as you go” garden waste sacks from the council and approved outlets - see Where to buy compostable sacks. Pay as you go council sacks can be left alongside your stickered bin or put out on your organic collection day.

Residents who opt in will be issued with a permit to stick to their brown bin and our collection crews will have up-to-date information on which households have subscribed and will only collect from those who have paid.

On non-collection days, each household is responsible for storing their brown wheeled bin securely on their private property. If you suspect other residents are making use of your bin, they would be trespassing in this instance and should be reported to the police. If you suspect that your bin is being abused when placed on the kerbside for collection days, please contact us as we have procedures in place for our Enforcement team to investigate.

We will place a reminder sticker on the bin advising the resident that the garden waste collection is a chargeable service and to contact Customer Services for further information. If this continues, we will remove the bin.

Please use our online form; Request removal of unwanted brown bin and we'll arrange to come and collect it. Depending on the condition of the bin, we'll either reuse or recycle it.

The decision to make a charge for the collection of garden waste has not been taken lightly. We've consulted other local authorities who in recent years, have also introduced a similar service and the feedback received is that they've not experienced any additional instances of fly tipping. However, we're prepared to deal with any reports for fly tipped garden waste and residents who are found guilty of fly tipping garden waste may be fined.

No, please put ash in with your black sack refuse for landfill waste.

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