• Plastic Recycling

    The "recycling symbol" on plastics as an indicator that the item is recyclable is a common misconception for many people. This number does not mean that the time can be recycled, rather it is used to denote the type of plastic the items is composed of. 

    The following guide will help you understand what types of items are made out of each type of plastic. Please note that this guide is not a definitive answer to what is and is not recycleable. It is only meant to educate on the different types of plastics and if they are generally recyclable or not.


    The best way to find out if a certain item is recyclable is to check with your specific hauler. You can find information about accepted materials of all Dakota County haulers here. 


  • Rain Barrels

    water from gutters going into a rain barrelLawn and garden watering make up nearly 40% of total household water use during the summer. A rain barrel collects water and stores it for when you need it most -- during periods of drought -- to water plants, wash your car, or to top a swimming pool. It provides an ample supply of free "soft water" to homeowners, containing no chlorine, lime or calcium making it ideal for gardens, flower pots, and car and window washing.

    Why use a Rain Barrel?

    • Save Water. A rain barrel will save most homeowners about 1,300 gallons of water during the peak summer months.
    • Save Money and Energy. Saving water not only helps protect the environment, it saves you money and energy (decreased demand for treated tap water).
    • Divert Water from Water Bodies.Diverting water from storm drains decreases the impact of runoff to streams and lakes.

    Ready-made rain barrels come in a variety of shapes and sizes.  They can be purchased from a number of companies including hardware stores and garden supply stores.

  • Recycling

    Recycling is an important way to reduce the impact of our waste on our community, locally and globally. It is a very easy thing to do, and it matters more than you think. Minnesotans make a big impact by recycling more than 2 million tons per year. 

    There are many benefits of recycling including:

    Saving Natural Resources

    Recycling 1 ton of paper saves 7,000 gallons of water.

    Reducing Greenhouse Gases

    Recycling in Minnesota reduces emissions equal to taking 2.3 million cars off the road.

    Creating Jobs

    Over 19,000 Minnesota jobs are involved with recycling.

    Reducing Our Taxes

    Each year, the recycling industry contributes $64 million in taxes to help pay for public services.

    *Information from Rethink Recycling,

  • Recycling 101

    Recycling from your home through curbside recycling collection is an easy and convenient way to do your part. Simply put out your recyclables on your pickup day and your hauler will do the rest. With new technology available, haulers are accepting more items than ever before. Follow the guide below for what can be recycled or check out this printable Home Recycling Guide to keep these guidelines handy. 

    Recyclable Materials Accepted at the Curb:


    • Empty and dry; leave caps on.
    • Containers numbered 1, 2, or 5
    • Water, soda and juice bottles
    • Milk and juice jugs
    • Laundry detergent bottles and jugs
    • Margarine, cottage cheese, cream cheese and other tubs and lids
    • Clear berry and produce containers

    Glass jars & bottles

    • Empty and dry; leave caps on.


    • Empty and dry; leave caps on.
    • Aluminum, tin and steel cans


    • Empty and dry; leave caps on.
    • Milk cartons
    • Juice boxes
    • Soup, broth and wine cartons

    Paper & Cardboard

    • Flatten boxes.
    • Mail and office papers
    • Magazines and catalogs
    • Newspapers and inserts
    • Corrugated cardboard boxes
    • Paperboard like cereal boxes, cracker boxes, pasta boxes, cake mix boxes

    New downloadable guides:

    Dive Into Recycling: This guide features everything you need to know about setting up service and recycling in your home. You will also find information about the Dakota County Recycling Zone and learn about your cities unique shared recycling department. 

    Dive Into Decluttering: This guide features locations for hard to dispose of items such as appliances, mattresses, household goods and more. 

    Dive Into Wasted Food:This guide features a comprehensive food storage guide to help make your food last as long as possible. You will also find information about food labels and other food waste prevention tips. 

  • Recycling After Home Renovations

    Recycling around the home has become easier than ever as more materials are being accepted by haulers and facilities. However, reusing or recycling parts of the home itself after a remodel isn't as easy as throwing it in your curbside bin. Luckily, there are resources in the metro county to reuse and recycle just about any part of the home including carpet, cabinets, insulation, roofing material and more! Check out the reuse and recycling opportunities list below for the names and numbers of locations near you. 

    infographic of home renovation waste

    Reuse opportunities

    For a item to be reused, it must be in excellent condition free of stains, rips or tears. Each reuse location will have specific standards that must be adhered to. Call ahead to see if your item will be accepted or email the locations with a photo of the item you wish to donate. 

    Habitat for Humanity Restore
    2700 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapoilis

    Accepts: Appliances, building materials, carpet, flooring, hardware, kitchen cabinets, paint, tools and other misc. items
    See full list of accepted items

    Better Futures MN
    2620 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis

    Accepts: Doors, cabinets, lighting, lumber, appliances, tiles and plumbing
    See a full list of accepted items

    Bridging MN
    201 W 87th St, Bloomington MN

    Accepts: Furniture, housewares, small appliances & electronics, mirrors, artwork and pictures
    See a full list of accepted items

    Recycling opportunities

    Dem-Con Companies
    13161 Dem-Con Drive, Shakopee MN

    Accepts: Asphalt, cabinets, carpet, concrete, fencing material, fiberboard, house wrap, molded fiberglass, pipe, plywood, roofing material, sheetrock, siding, treated wood and more
    See a full list of accepted items

    Randy's Sanitation
    12620 Vincent Ave S, Burnsville MN

    Accepts: Appliances, construction material, bath tubs, pallets, sinks, toilets and more
    See a full list of accepted items 

  • Recycling FAQs

    Have a question that wasn't answered? Let us know in the comments below. {jcomments on}

  • Recycling Guide

    Dakota County Recycling and Disposal Guide tree logoThe decisions we make every day can affect our natural resources and have a major impact on the planet. One way to lessen our impact is to consider the entire lifespan of products, from beginning to the end. Thankfully, Dakota Valley Recycling and Dakota County makes it easy to find proper disposal of our products during the end of life stage. View our decluttering guidefor tips and tricks on getting started in your own home. 

    Recycling Guide

    The Recycling Guide is an easy-to-use guide to help you learn where to recycle, compost or dispose of materials. It offers useful information, options and tips to reduce the amount of waste you generate, reuse goods to get the most out of them and recycle items when they are no longer useful. Call ahead to verify the location, materials collected and hours of operation.

    About this directory

    This information was compiled by Dakota County. For additional recyclers in your area, search online. Any recycler wishing to be added to this list may contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


    The information provided in this directory is compiled as a service to residents. A listing in this directory does not imply an endorsement of approval by Dakota County. All businesses listed in the directory are responsible for complying with all applicable local, state and federal laws pertaining to recycling, waste disposal and environmental protection.


  • Recycling Internship

    Dakota Valley Recycling is looking for a passionate Recycling Intern to assist in the planning, implementation, and management of recycling and waste abatement programs for the cities of Apple Valley, Burnsville, Eagan, and Lakeville.

    The Recycling Intern will assist DVR by:

    • Developing strategies to improve DVR's social media presence.
    • Attending events, presentations, and booths hosted by or in partnership with DVR.
    • Verifying recycling best management practices in municipal parks and facilities.
    • Assisting with the coordination of collection event and reuse opportunities.
    • Providing technical assistance to multifamily properties as requested.

    Minimum Qualifications:

    • Must have one year of college or vocational school in Environmental Science or related field.
    • Must have knowledge and experience using social media.
    • Must possess a valid Driver's License or be eligible to be licensed in the State of Minnesota.
    • A background or interest in local government work serving the community.

    This is a flexible position with an ideal start date in March and end date in October or agreed upon end date.

    Posting closes 2/26/2024 at 11:59 PM Central.

    Apply Here 

  • Recycling Myths Debunked

    The recycling world is not immune to myths but don't let these rumors stop you from making a difference. We have compiled the biggest fibs and explained how they just aren't true. 

  • Reducing School Supplies Waste

    The weather getting warmer not only means the beginning of summer, but also the beginning of summer break for school kids. With the school year ending, kids will be bringing home all of their work and supplies they have been using daily though out the year. Instead of throwing it in a drawer or closet and forgetting about it until August, consider taking note of their left over school supplies and deciding whether to reuse or recycle it now. This is a great way to decrease clutter in your home and potentially save you some time and money in August when you're getting ready to send them back to school. Any materials that are still in good condition should be kept for next year. Otherwise donating or recycling the old, worn-out supplies like markers, folders and binders, notebooks, and backpacks is the best option. Here are some tips on things to do with your old school and office supplies.


    Crayola has partnered with schools across North America to help kids understand the importance of protecting the environment and recycling. Crayola ColorCycle works with K-12 schools to collect all brands of colored markers, dry-erase board markers, and highlighters. Follow this link, Crayola Colorcycle, for more information and to see if your school participates.


    If you have notebooks that are completely used up, the paper inside can go in your normal recycling bin. You just need to remove the metal coil from the side. If your notebook came with a plastic cover, that needs to be thrown away as these types of plastics cannot be recycled. The metal coil can be recycled at a recycling center, such as The Recycling Zone, or can be re-purposed around the house for anything that needs bendable wire. For half-filled notebooks consider keeping them and using as scrap paper for notes or reminders around the house.


    TerraCycle, a recycling company that focuses on hard-to-recycle materials, has partnered with Office Depot to start a binder recycling campaign. Bring in your old, used office binders to Office Depot in exchange for a coupon for $2 off a new binder. Find more information here.

    Pens and Pencils:

    For old pens and pencils that still work, considering keeping them for next year. New ones won't work any better than used one, plus you will save money and teach your kids to value their possessions. However, if you have so many that you feel you still need to get rid of them, consider donating them to the Right to Write Campaign. Information about this campaign can be found here. Pens that are out of ink or broken cannot be recycled however and should be thrown in the trash.


    More than half a million pounds of used crayons are discarded each year, turning into waxy sludge that never biodegrades in landfills. The Crayon Initiative collects used crayons from schools, restaurants, and homes to melt them down and re-manufacture them, reducing waste. More information and how to send in your crayons can be found here.


    When it comes to folders, ones that are completely made out of paper are the only type that can be recycled. Polypropylene (the plastic ones) and laminated folders have to be thrown away.


    If the backpack is still in good condition, try to get your child to use it for another year. If they have grown out of it, consider reusing the backpack for another purpose. Examples are a light travel bag, a first aid and safety supply bag for your car, or a reusable bag for groceries. If the backpack is worn out and beyond repair, try to find a materials recycling donation center.


    Once August rolls around and it’s time to buy your child’s school supplies again, consider opting for items that are recyclable or reusable. We often don’t think about a product’s entire life cycle when buying, leading to large amounts of items being thrown away after they are no longer of use to us. Try to purchase things like paper folders, composition notebooks or notebooks with recycled paper, pens and pencils that are refillable, and high quality backpacks and pencil cases that will last many school years.


  • Repeat After Me: Bottles, Cans, Paper

    Recycling today seems more complicated than ever -- it's time to get Back to Basics.

  • Residential Compost Sites

    fallen leavesState law in Minnesota prohibits the disposal of yard waste with your garbage.  If you have the ability to take your yard waste to a compost site, you have the choice of a number of privately-run sites in the area.  All yard waste disposal is subject to fees; call ahead for pricing.

    Food & yard waste drop-off locations

    The Mulch Store, Empire
    16454 Blaine Ave
    Rosemount, MN 55068
    Open year-round
    Call for hours.
    Accepts: Leaves, grass clippings, brush, tree waste, stumps, logs, and all food scraps
    For Sale: Compost, landscape mulch.

    Yard waste only drop-off locations

    The Mulch Store, Burnsville
    1030 W Cliff Rd
    Burnsville, MN 55337
    Open seasonally (April through November 30, weather permitting).
    Call for hours.
    Accepts: Leaves, grass clippings, brush, tree waste, stumps, logs, soil.
    For Sale: Compost, blended dirt, landscape mulch.

    Gertens R.E.S.
    805 Yankee Doodle Rd
    Eagan, MN 55121
    Open seasonally (April through November 30, weather permitting).
    Call for hours.
    Accepts: Leaves, grass clippings, soft plant material, brush, tree waste, stumps, logs, soil, sod, fill, gravel, stone/rock, concrete (rebar-free).
    For Sale: Compost, landscape mulch, decorative rock.

    Gertens Brickyard (retail location)
    5500 Blaine Ave
    Inver Grove Heights, MN 55076
    651-450-1501 (store)
    651-239-1369 (direct) 
    Open year-round
    Call for hours.
    Accepts: Leaves, grass clippings, soft plant material, brush, tree waste, stumps, logs, soil, sod, fill, gravel, stone/rock, concrete (rebar-free).
    For Sale: compost, top soil, landscape mulch, decorative rock, gravel, river rock.

    South Saint Paul Compost Site
    681 Verderosa Ave
    South St. Paul, MN 55075
    Open seasonally.
    See website for hours.
    Accepts: Grass, sod, sod trimmings, garden waste. You may bring your compost in any type of bag or by the trailer load.
    Fee: Call for fees.

    Davey Tree Horticultural Specialists, Inc.
    405 Hardman Avenue South, South St. Paul
    Phone Number: (651) 451-8907
    Open seasonally- call for exact dates
    Saturday: 8:00am- 12:00pm
    Accepts: Brush disposal
    Fee: $10/load - cash only


    Residents can also schedule a pick-up with their garbage service provider for an added fee.

  • Resources and Rebates

    When it comes to energy efficiency, most local utility companies offer rebates or incentive programs of some kind for residents.  Below is a list of resources and links.

  • Scrap Metal

    Almost all metals can be recycled.  Metal items that are not food containers are considered "scrap metal."  Examples of scrap metal include:

    • lawn mowers (fluids drained)
    • snow blowers (fluids drained)
    • metal grills
    • bicycles
    • cast iron sinks/bathtubs
    • metal fencing
    • metal car parts
    • most other metal items

    Recycling Scrap Metal

    Option 1:  Bring your unwanted metals to the Recycling Zone or a local scrap metal recycler.  Call first.

    The Recycling Zone
    3365 Dodd Rd
    Eagan, MN 55121
    Wed: 9:00am - 8:00pm
    Thurs: noon - 8:00pm
    Fri: 9:00am - 5:00pm
    Sat: 8:00am - 5:00pm
    Fee: Free of charge

    Local scrap metal recyclers
    Contact scrap metal recyclers directly for hours of operation and fees/payouts.

    AAA Auto Salvage
    2871 W 160th St
    Rosemount, MN 55068

    Advanced Recyclers
    10619 Briggs Drive
    Inver Grove Heights, MN 55077

    Alters Metal Recycling
    801 Barge Channel Rd
    St. Paul, MN 55107

    Northern Metal Recycling
    521 Barge Channel Rd
    St. Paul, MN 55107

    Option 2: If you do not have a way to transport scrap metal to a recycling facility, call your garbage hauler or one of the scrap metal recyclers above (as available) to schedule a pick-up for a one-time fee.

  • Sidewalk Salt

    For years, doctors have told people to stick to a low-salt diet.  According to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), our waters should follow the same advice.icy sidewalk in the winter

    When snow and ice start to accumulate on Minnesota roads, parking lots, and sidewalks, one of the more common reactions is to apply salt, which contains chloride--a water pollutant.  When snow and ice melt, most of the salt goes with it, washing into our lakes, streams and rivers.  Once in the water, there’s no way to remove the chloride, and it becomes a pollutant.

    According to Brooke Asleson, MPCA project manager for the Twin Cities Metro Area Chloride Project, “salt is a real threat to water quality.  It only takes one teaspoon of road salt to permanently pollute five gallons of water.  We are trying to spread the word that less is more when it comes to applying salt because at high concentrations, chloride can harm the fish and plant life in our waters.”

    Check out the MPCA's video on winter sidewalk and driveway maintenance, with tips on types of salt, when to use it and how much to use:

    Here are some ways for homeowners to reduce salt use while still making sure your sidewalk and driveway is safe:

    • Shovel.  The more snow and ice you remove manually, the less salt you will have to use and the more effective it can be.  Break up ice with an ice scraper and decide if application of a de-icer or sand is even necessary to maintain traction.
    • More salt does not mean more melting.  Use less than four pounds of salt per 1,000 square feet (an average parking space is about 150 square feet).  One pound of salt is approximately a heaping 12-ounce coffee mug.
    • 15 degrees is too cold for salt to work.  Most salts stop working around this temperature.  Instead, use sand for traction.
    • Sweep up extra salt.  If salt or sand is visible on dry pavement, it is no longer doing any work and will be washed away.

    To learn more about what you can to reduce chloride in our waters, visit the agency’s Twin Cities Metro Area Chloride Project webpage.

  • Stop Unwanted Mail

    While recycling unsolicited mail, flyers, and catalogs is great, stopping unwanted mail before it gets to you is even better.

    General tips

    • The best way to keep your name off mailing lists is to control your exposure. Limit how often you give out your contact information and to whom.
    • Help older friends and family members get off mail lists using the tips below, especially if online forms seem intimidating for them.
    • Send a postcard or call the number listed on the piece of mail. Tell them you want your name removed from their list. Include any customer identification number found on the shipping label.
    • Log into online accounts and choose the paperless option for updates, if available.
    • The U.S. Postal Service is required to deliver mail sent to all addresses. It will be harder to stop these.

    Bank statements – Change your settings in your online accounts or call your financial institutions to get electronic statements.

    Catalogs –Sign up for an online account with CatalogChoice and choose the catalogs you want to stop getting.

    Charity solicitations – While no centralized opt-out system for charity mailings exists, you can include a note with your donation requesting that the charity not rent, sell or trade your name. You can also ask your charities to only send you a mailing once each year or not at all. It may take multiple requests.

    Contests – Get off the two biggest contest promoters' lists:

    • Use the Publishers Clearing House online form
    • Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to request a stop to solicitations.

    Coupons - Several big companies are responsible for sending out most of the coupons we receive.

    • Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your name and address
    • Fill out the online form for RedPlum and ValPak to stop their mailings.

    Credit card offers - Use or call toll-free at 1-888-567-8688 to remove your name from the nation's major consumer credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, Innovis and TransUnion). You will need to give your Social Security number, name, address and phone number.

    Direct mail - Register with the Direct Marketing Association , the national trade association for companies that send direct mail, to remove your name from catalogs, magazines and other unsolicited mail lists. Please note that there's a small fee to unsubscribe.

    Past residents - The U.S. Postal Service says to write “not at this address" on the previous resident's envelopes and place them in a blue mailbox or another outgoing-mail receptacle.

    Tools to help

    PaperKarma – Download the phone app (iOS and Android) and unsubscribe from junk mailers by taking a picture of your mail. Fees apply.

    Wabi – Use the online site to unsubscribe from five specific mailing lists for free including weekly coupon mailers. Fees apply for more than five.

  • The Recycling Zone

    The Recycling Zone is the County-run recycling center in Eagan, MN. This facility is where all Dakota County residents can bring recyclables, electronics, scrap metal, paint, household chemicals, hazardous waste and other items that shouldn't go in the trash. The Recycling Zone is open to all residents living in Dakota County or the other metro-area counties. A full list of accepted items and more information about available programs can be found on the Dakota County Recycling Zone website.

    Businesses can only dispose of their hazardous waste at The Recycling Zone through the Very Small Quantity Generator Program. Visit Dakota County's For Businesses page for more information and to schedule an appointment


    3365 Dodd Road (South Highway 149)
    Eagan, MN 55121

    Wednesday: 9:00am - 8:00pm
    Thursday: noon - 8:00pm
    Friday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
    Saturday: 8:00am - 5:00pm

    *The Recycling Zone is closed New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

    Acceptable Items From Residents (free unless otherwise noted)

    • Household hazardous waste such as paint, automotive oil, chemicals, cleaners and fertilizers
    • Ammunition (Please do NOT bring ammunition to your local Police Department)
    • Electronics such as laptops, stereos, DVD players, satellite dishes, and cell phones (Computer monitors and TV's have a $10 per-item drop-off fee)
    • Small household electronics such as toasters, vacuums, radios and coffee makers
    • Scrap metal
    • Tires (Fees starting at $5)
    • Basic recyclables: aluminum cans, cardboard boxes, glass, and plastic bottles 
    • More recyclable plastics: yogurt, pudding and fruit cups, plastic disposable drinking cups, margarine, cream cheese and cottage cheese tubs, and deli containers
    • Recyclable paper cartons: milk cartons, juice cartons, juice boxes, and broth/soup cartons.

    Not Accepted

    Other Services

    • Reuse Zone: Residents can also pick up free products from The Reuse Zone. When items are brought in and are still usable, The Recycling Zone puts them out for reuse. Items in The Reuse Zone include paint, chemicals, cleaners, solvents, etc. 
    • Lead Sinker Exchange: Exchange your lead sinkers for non-hazardous alternatives, free of charge.
    • Thermometer Exchange: Exchange your old mercury thermometers for non-hazardous alternatives, free of charge.

  • Top 10 In The Bin

    If you have ever caught yourself asking "can I recycle this?" -you're not alone. New technologies in recycling allow for more materials to go into the recycling bin, but it also makes recycling a little confusing. To help answer the question- "can I recycle this?"- three national organizations teamed up to unify and simplify the recycling message by creating the program "Top 10 in the Bin." These organizations include Keep America Beautiful, the National Waste and Recycling Association, and the Solid Waste Association of North America. To see a more detailed recycling list that is specific to your hauler in Dakota County, visit our curbside recycling guide here

    To download the Top 10 In The Bin poster for free visit 


  • Understanding Your Waste Contract

    If you are a business or institution that already recycles, great job! We have some tips to help make sure you are getting cost-effective trash and recycling service that fits your needs. If you don’t have recycling service, these tips can help you get started.   


    Haulers rarely revisit their customers’ service levels after the initial set-up; it's up to you to make sure you’re still getting the best deal. Many businesses have been locked into their contracts so long that they’re no longer getting the best price or receiving a level of service that meets their needs. Moreover, contracts often include language that makes it difficult to switch haulers. 

    Here are some phrases to watch out for: 

    • Automatic roll-over
    • Advance notice of discontinuation
    • Formal notice of discontinuation
    • Ability to increase rates without notice
    • Ability to add surcharges for fuel and other inflationary items

    These terms can keep you locked into a contract that charges more than the market rate and make it hard to switch to a service provider who will offer a better price. Contracts usually have only a small window of time where you can switch haulers without penalty. Get a copy of your waste contract and read it carefully! 


    Make sure you understand your invoices. If something is unclear, ask your service provider to clarify it for you.  Invoices often make it hard to distinguish the relative costs of recycling and trash service. It can also be hard to tell what part of your bill is being charged state and county taxes. These are charged on trash ONLY; shifting from trash to recycling should save you money on these charges. Also pay attention to additional fees that may be added on top of your quoted rates; these may creep up over time without being noticed. Examples include items such as:

    • Rental trash
    • Rental recycling
    • Container service fee
    • Recyclable material offset
    • Extra yardage fee
    • Single sort processing fee
    • Administrative fee
    • Environmental fee
    • Non-tax fee
    • Fuel surcharge
    • Fuel/Environmental/Recovery fee
    • Commodity adjustment


    If you don’t already have recycling service, do your part by adding it! Rates charged to customers for recycling service are usually less expensive than chose charged for trash, and your recyclables will not be taxed by the state or county. However, adding recycling to an existing trash-only service contract costs more money in total unless the trash service levels can be reduced.

    Take steps to “right-size” your containers. You should evaluate whether you have extra space in your dumpsters or if they could be serviced less often. Once you have established a continuing contract with a hauler, the hauler has no incentive to evaluate your service frequency or size of your containers.

    If you update your contract, make sure your hauler is collecting the maximum types of recyclable material. The majority of businesses recycle cardboard and office paper. With almost all haulers now offering single-sort recycling service, you could be recycling all kinds of materials! For example, most haulers now accept #1-7 plastics and cartons.

    If you don’t have control over your waste contract, contact your property manager, building owner or corporate office and ask for recycling!


    Businesses that go out to bid, even through an informal process, tend to get lower rates and more services.

    Visit our commercial haulers page for a list of commercial haulers in your community.

    This information is adapted from the report “Solid Waste Management Coordinating Board: Commercial Cost and Billing Research” by Skumatz Economic Research Associates, Inc.

  • Vermicomposting

    worms for vermicompostingVermicomposting is the process of using worms to turn kitchen waste into a black, earthy-smelling, nutrient-rich humus.

    You Need 5 Basic Ingredients to Start Vermicomposting:

    1. A Container. Worm boxes can be purchased or made. Plastic storage containers are convenient and come in a variety of sizes. These containers are easily transported.  Never snap the lid shut tight. The lid should lie loosely on the bin.
    2. Bedding.Use shredded corrugated cardboard, shredded paper like newspaper, or commercial worm bedding which is available in sporting goods stores, but it is also more expensive.
    3. Water. Place the dry, shredded bedding in a large container and add water until it covers the bedding.  Squeeze the water out from the bedding as much as possible. Place the bedding in the bin and fluff. Your bedding needs to remain moist.  Mist if necessary.
    4. Worms. The worms used in vermicomposting are called redworms (Eisenia foetida).  You can order them through lawn and garden catalogs.  Keep the temperature between 55 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit.
    5. Non-Fatty Kitchen Scraps. Add vegetable & fruit waste, coffee grounds, egg shells, and tea bags.  Start slowly.  Gradually increase the amount of food.  Pull back a small amount of bedding and dump in the scraps. Cover the scraps with bedding.

    The worms will digest the kitchen scraps and bedding faster than any other compost method, passing through the worms' bodies and becoming "castings." In about 3-4 months, the worms will have digested nearly all the garbage and bedding.  The bin will be filled with a rich, black natural fertilizer. Worm castings contain five times more nitrogen, seven times more phosphorus and 11 times more potassium than soil. Remove the castings from time to time.

    For more information go to

Contact Us

City Education Department
13713 Frontier Court
Burnsville, MN 55337-3817
Phone: 952-895-4559

Dakota Valley Recycling

DVR is the partnership recycling department for the Cities of Apple Valley, BurnsvilleEagan and Lakeville that connects residents and businesses to recycling, composting and waste disposal information.

DVR is not a drop off facility and does not accept any materials for recycling.