Skip to main content

Open Burning

Rules about residential yard debris burning.

Residential open burning of yard debris is not allowed in unincorporated areas of Washington County that are eligible for yard debris pickup from a waste hauler. 

  • The rules do not apply to recreational fires like camp fires, fire pits or chimineas. 
  • The rules do not apply to agricultural burning. 

Open burning of yard debris is not allowed in areas of the county that are shaded in blue on the map below. Click on the map to find your property or view the map in more detail. 

If you live in an area of the county that is not shaded in blue, check with your local fire department or the Department of Environmental Quality for more information about open burning rules in your area. 

partial map of Washington County

Find your property or view this map in more detail

Alternatives to burning yard debris 

  • Use curbside yard debris rolling carts, cans and bags from your garbage collector. 
  • Recycle paper and cardboard in your curbside recycling container or take it to a drop-off recycling center
  • Compost yard debris and kitchen scraps at home. 
  • Take yard debris to a drop-off center
  • Rent or use a wood chipper to make chips for mulch and compost. 
  • Reuse old lumber or donate it to a drop-off reuse center. 
  • Take hazardous materials to a household hazardous waste facility. 

Filing a Complaint 

File a complaint about residential yard debris burning by filling out this form or call 503-846-8744.   

Hardship Permits 

If you have no other way to get rid of your yard debris, you may be able to get a hardship permit. Hardship permits are only available March 1-June 15 and October 1-December 15.