Mayor Muriel Bowser’s goal of 40% tree canopy coverage of Washington DC by 2032 has one drawback – so many leaves! Glover Park as a neighborhood might already be at that goal in 2022. The Department of Public Works is up to the challenge this year, with 50% more staffing for leaf collection over last year. Since we tend to experience a little confusion over the process and the schedule, here is a run-down for Glover Park: The neighborhood south and west of New Mexico Avenue, Tunlaw Road and 37th Street (most of Glover Park) will get a first leaf collection from Monday November 28th to Sunday December 3rd and leaves should be put out by Sunday November 27th. [The area east and north of New Mexico and Tunlaw, mostly outside Glover Park, will be collected November 21-26]. The second and final leaf collection vacuum will take place sometime between January 16th and 28th.
1) All leaves should be raked or blown out into the street, NOT into the tree box area (which is the area between the curb and the sidewalk) because this accomplishes three things:
It gives bike riders and drivers the opportunity to practice their hazardous driving techniques by experimenting with pumping their brakes or holding them steadily through a skid. If they can survive, they will be better prepared for the two week-long snow season.
Considering the neighborhood might lose 100 or more parking spaces soon for bike lanes, putting piles of leaves in parking spaces will give drivers good practice at how to hunt for the scarce spaces.
The bus drivers get a kick out moving into oncoming traffic to avoid leaf piles in the street. You can see the smiles on their faces as they cause cars to swerve into the opposite curb.
2) It’s best to use a gasoline-powered leaf blower to accomplish the task. Some believed all that fake news about the ban on them because of the noise and pollution, but to clarify, they meant to say that wood-burning and coal-fired leaf blowers have been banned as of January 2022. Just look at all the landscaping companies in the area – they obviously know it was all a ruse. $500 fine? Pff.
3) So that everything looks neat and tidy put all leaves in bags and leave them at the curb. The DPW workers will appreciate having less work to do as they look with bewilderment and drift past them with their giant leaf vacuum. Once the bags sit a while out front, paper bags of leaves can be discarded in January by calling 311 to schedule removal, usually at your normal trash pickup location. If you like collecting colorful “Oops!” stickers, put the leaves in plastic bags, then you can keep your leaves and the sticker collection!
4) If you do decide to put the loose leaves in the tree box area by November 27th, then remember to pile as much trash and branches on top of it. It’s a good way to test the 311 scheduled paper bag leaf collection come January and it should give those extra 50% of DPW workers something to do by sorting through it all. By the way, DC has a convenient year round yard waste collection program and will even take bundled branches up to four feet long, in addition to grass, leaves, plants and more.
If you have absolutely nothing else to do, you can follow the leaf-collectors in real-time by using Bob the Blower here! Exciting stuff.