Compost Site

Compost Site Closed  EDIT 1Compost Site Closed on Monday, September 20

Sherburne County residents have obviously been busy with beautifying their outdoor spaces this fall – so much so that we need a day to have grass and other yard waste removed from the site to make room for more!

The Elk River Compost Site will be closed all day on Monday, September 20 - this includes no access for those dropping off yard waste, oil, and material to the organics dumpster. The site will reopen as usual on Tuesday, September 21.

Thank you for your patience!

Maintenance Facility 

Just a friendly reminder, the Elk River Maintenance Facility is no longer open for walk in services. 

Compost Site Passes

Compost Site passes are available for Sherburne County residents only online here, and in-person at City Hall (13065 Orono Parkway) with proof of residency. Passes requested online will be sent out via USPS the following business day.

New Compost Site passes are free for the first card and $5 for a replacement card. Replacement card requests can be purchased online here. If you lose your pass, your old pass will be invalidated when you apply for a new one. 

Compost Site Hours

Drop-off hours are 5:30 a.m. - 10:00 p.m. daily. The site is monitored by security cameras and gated requiring an access pass.

Accepted Items

  • Yard waste - grass clippings, leaves
  • Sod
  • Brush
  • Branches (6” in diameter or less)
  • Oil, filters, antifreeze

Items NOT Accepted


  • Lumber (2x4's and other dimensional lumber, painted boards, telephone poles, railroad ties, construction site debris, etc.)
  • Stumps
  • Rocks and concrete
  • Plastic or trash
  • Bags – empty and dispose of bags in dumpster or take home to reuse

Accessing the Compost Site

Compost Site passes are valid at all cities that are part of the Sherburne County Municipal Recycling Board (Becker, Big Lake, Elk River, and Zimmerman).

Sherburne County compost site locations and accepted materials brochure

Non-County Residents

Materials will not be accepted from non-county residents. If you are not a resident of Sherburne County, visit the Rethink Recycling website to see if your city has a compost facility.

Commercial Haulers

Sherburne County has made the decision to discontinue commercial compost site use county-wide. All commercial use passes issued previously were for one year and expired on December 31, 2020; new commercial passes are not being issued. Vendors who provide lawn and tree service to Elk River residents may dispose of compost at the Elk River site, but must have the compost pass for the resident they are performing the work for. Commercial haulers will need to dispose of material at a private composting facility or landfill site. 

These changes were made due to the increasing volumes of compostable materials at all four compost sites within the county, and the decreasing availability of processors willing to grind and haul the materials away from the sites. As a result, costs to operate the compost sites have exceeded the authorized budgets provided by the county to the cities to operate the sites. The decision was made by the county with agreement from all four cities that commercial passes would no longer be issued in order to ensure these sites could continue to be available for residents.

**Please note, Elk River no longer has compost material available for residents to pick up per the Sherburne County Contractor Agreement.**