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In Elkhart County, the burning of leaves and yard waste is never advised. Through studies, we have learned how smoke negatively affects clean air and human health. The smoke from leaf and yard waste fires can linger at ground level where family members and neighbors might be affected. Breathing in smoke is never good for you, and the Elkhart County Commissioners encourage alternatives to open burning. 

Fallen Leaves


Make Wise Choices

Bag your leaves and drop them off at the Elkhart County Landfill (59530 County Road 7, Elkhart, IN 46517) during their scheduled business hours. Both residential and commercial customers can bring leaves to the landfill for free! You will need to empty leaves out of their bags when you arrive at the landfill. We do take other yard waste...grass clippings, stumps, limbs, flowers etc. but there is a fee to bring them to the landfill. 

If you absolutely must burn your leaves, burn them responsibly.

Participate in the Leaf Collection Competition

If you are part of a group or organization, click here to view additional information about the competition.

If you are a resident who would like their leaves collected as part of the leaf collection competition, stay tuned for a list of competitors in late August. You can then contact your favorite group to see if they might be able to help.

Groups will need to empty leaves out of their bags when they arrive at the landfill. 

Reach Out

Use the Contact Us form on this website to share your ideas.

To report inappropriate outdoor burning, please contact the Indiana Department of Environmental Management at (800) 451-6027 x3 or at

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