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Leaf bag shortage leaves Halifax in lurch

Residents left with leafy lawns until more shipments come in

Halifax leaves are all raked up with nowhere to go.

The city’s hardware stores are experiencing a shortage of leaf bags.

Out of seven stores that responded to calls, only one still had the bags in stock on Tuesday.

Ron Meakins felt lucky to find enough bags for his leaves.

“I had a hard time. I found them yesterday,” Meakins said. “I went to three different places. Only the hardware store on Almon [Street] had some left.”

“They should allow clear plastic bags for the leaves,” he added. “Common sense will tell you what’s in it.”

Jennifer Stairs is a spokesperson for the city. She was unaware of the shortage when contacted by the Signal on Tuesday morning.

“We do accept leaf and yard waste in the green bin,” Stairs explained. “The excess does have to go in the leaf bags.”

She said that if Haligonians can’t find bags in time for pickup this week, they might simply have to wait until the next regular collection.

The shortage was first commented on in a Reddit chat forum.

“Just do what I do and don’t rake,” said one user.

“It won’t ruin your lawn if you run over the leaves a few times with a lawnmower to shred them up into bits and spread them around evenly. It’s great fertilizer,” said another commenter.

The Radio Room’s Alex Cooke also reported on the story this week. The Radio Room is a program by the University of King’s College Journalism School on CKDU 88.1 at 5 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday.

Stores around the city are now waiting for more shipments of leaf bags.

An employee at the Chain Lake Costco said the store ran out of bags a week ago. She said that they are not expecting another shipment – but that may change as more and more customers come looking for leaf bags.

A Quinpool Canadian Tire employee said the shortage was unusual. His store had only bag liners left.

The City of Halifax announced today that the annual Fall Leaf Cleanup program starts on Monday. The city hopes residents can help keep streets, sidewalks, and public walkways clear of leaves.

The city reminded Haligonians that leaves that don’t fit in the green bin must go in large paper bags.

But many seem to be making do with plastic bags.

With paper leaf bags missing from most store shelves, Halegonians are using plastic bags to dispose of their leaves.
With paper leaf bags missing from most store shelves, Halegonians are using plastic bags to dispose of their leaves.   Emma Meldrum