Brush, Leaf & Log Collection
The Department of Public Works provides a collection of brush, logs and leaves according to the schedules linked below. Schedules are also delivered to each residence prior to the beginning of the collection. For collection purposes, Princeton has been divided into 5 Sections. To know which section your street is in, see "What Section Am I In" (PDF).
The Department of Public Works will begin a town-wide brush and Christmas tree collection on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. Have your items curbside by 7 am. Remove all decorations and lights from the Christmas trees and do not put them in a bag.
2021 Leaf & Bush Schedule by Section
*Note the error on the schedules: Brush will be collected in Sections 4 & 5 the week of April 12-16.*
Environmental Commission Guide
Princeton's Environmental Commission offers a guide to the benefits of composting and mulching leaves (PDF).
Leaf bags are for loose leaves only. Do not put any other material in them or they will not be collected. Hedge trimmings, garden clippings, branches, etc. all go out with brush pick up, not in the leaf bags.
Curbside Waste Tips
Please remember these tips when putting your curbside waste out for pickup:
- Check and follow your section's collection schedule
- Consider mulching leaves to help return nutrients to the soil
- Keep branches/logs no longer 3 feet and no greater than 6 inches in diameter; we will not collect logs larger than this size
- Keep piles small and limit to 3 by 3 feet
- Keep sidewalks and roadways clear of fallen debris
- Make piles of one material type only
- Assume it is your sections collection when you see neighbors yard waste. Please check your sections schedule.
- Make giant piles of brush, leaves, or logs
- Mix materials types (brush, leaves, logs)
- Put anything other than leaves in the leaf bags. Your bags will not be collected if there is mixed material in them.
The leaf and brush pickup does not include grass clippings. It is recommended they be mulched back into your yard. Do not leave them out for pickup.
Occasionally severe storms result in a disruption of collections for many municipal services including; brush, leaf, trash, curbside organics, and recycling. When this happens we will post an alert on the home page for information. You can sign up for these alerts and other website updates through our Notify Me page.
Joseph Maher Joint Ecological Facility
The Joseph H. Maher, Jr. Ecological Center is located at:
3701 Princeton Pike
Lawrence Township, NJ 08648
Yard waste accumulated after the scheduled collections can be taken by either you or a landscaper to the Joseph Maher Joint Ecological Facility located at 3701 Princeton Pike, just past the intersection of Province Line Road. Branches and logs taken to the facility must be no longer than 3 feet in length and no larger than 6 inches in diameter. Compost and double ground wood chips are available free of charge to all Princeton residents and are available at the Ecological Facility.
Residents should bring their own containers or light trucks for the material. Residents also may dispose of leaves and brush during the listed hours. Absolutely no commercial vehicles on Saturdays!
The facility is now open Monday through Saturday from 7:30 am to 2:30 pm.
The Joseph H. Maher, Jr. Ecological Center is closed Sundays and Municipal Holidays:
- New Years Day
- Martin Luther King's Birthday
- Washington's Birthday
- Memorial Day
- July 4th
- Labor Day
- Columbus Day
- Election Day
- Veterans Day
- The day after Thanksgiving
- Christmas Eve
- Christmas Day
Leave Leaves in Your Yard
The Princeton Environmental Commission reminds you that the easiest and most environmentally efficient way to manage your leaves is to leave your leaves in your yard. Compost them, mulch them, or rake them into an unobtrusive area of your property. Broken down leaves will nourish your grass, plants, and trees. For a more detailed description of how and why to leave your leaves, visit the Environmental Commission's Guide to Fall Leaf Management (PDF).
Leaf Bag Distribution
Residents receive 40 free leaf bags for the collection of spring and/or fall leaves. The bags are a 32-gallon biodegradable paper bag and are collected more frequently than leaves blown to the street for curbside collection. Proof of residency is required.
They are available at Ace Hardware and Princeton Shopping Center during business hours. Leaf bags will be available from Ace Hardware in mid-March.
Helpful Information for Landscapers
- Gas-powered Landscape Equipment Regulations and Information for Homeowners
- Gas-powered Landscape Equipment Regulations for Contractors
- Leaf Blower Noise Questions and Answers - English (PDF)
- Leaf Blower Noise Questions and Answers - Spanish (PDF)
- Princeton Letter to Landscapers about Mulching - English (PDF)
- Princeton Letter to Landscapers about Mulching - Spanish (PDF)