Autumn has arrived and once again the leaves are changing color and blanketing the yards and gardens of Sylvania. Our "City of Trees" certainly lives up to its namesake by having tens of thousands of trees throughout the community. Approximately 7,700 street trees are growing in street right-of-ways alone, with many thousands more in parks and on private lands, including the towering oaks and maples native to the area.
Because of all these trees, leaf collection is a very big job in the City of Sylvania. Last year, City crews spent 3,513 hours and drove 6,460 miles loading and hauling 12,506 cubic yards of leaves to the City composting field on Yankee Road north of town. That is up from the 10,800 c.y. collected in 2017 and 11,928 c.y. collected in 2018.
At the composting field, the leaves and green yard waste are ground and piled into wind rows. The wind rows are turned each year, and the composting process takes about three years to turn the materials into Sylvan-Gro, a rich compost the City sells by the bushel.
This year's leaf collection begins the week of October 26th with one or two Streets Division collection crews as needed following predetermined routes through the City. As more leaves are raked to the curb, two additional crews will be added and work full time at leaf collection. In an effort to speed up leaf collection, temporary workers are used and overtime is offered to City workers in the Streets, Forestry and Utilities Divisions when needed.
The City crews load leaves raked to the curb into leaf boxes mounted on city dump trucks using diesel powered leaf loader vacuum units. Sticks, grass clippings, flowers, plants, etc. can clog or even break the leaf loaders and are not to be part of the leaf collection process. Those items should be set out separately for regular pick-up by the Green Recycling program of the Forestry Division. An unlimited free Green Recycling pick-up is scheduled for November 2nd to November 13th on your regular Green Recycling pick-up day.
Please do not pile leaves into the street – keep them on the grassy area next to the curb or pavement edge. Every year I see leaves piled way beyond the curb causing some streets to become dangerously narrow, and sometimes forming dams that block storm drainage and cause flooding. The leaves can also clog catch basins and storm drains.
City crews will move as quickly as possible to collect all the leaves. The crews will make multiple sweeps through the City, six rounds last year. If we have good weather, the leaves fall on schedule, and it doesn't snow too much, the leaf collection will be completed by December 11th. But the weather and the trees don't always cooperate. Thanks for your patience! City of Sylvania crews will be making their rounds and will be to your street soon.
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Foreword by Gordon Ward
Celebrating the rich history of Sylvania, Ohio