It’s time to start raking up leaves! Starting next Monday, October 30th, Missoula Street Maintenance crews will be in Area One, which is north of the Clark Fork River, to scoop up fallen foliage. Street Superintendent Brian Hensel says the whole city is scheduled to be finished in four weeks, but that rarely happens.

"It says here that Area Four will be done on December 1st, let's see... I've been here I think seventeen or eighteen years and I think that twice we've actually made it through the leaf schedule on schedule," Hensel said. "What happens usually is that two or three weeks in we get a snow storm and then folks doing leaf operations have to switch over to doing snow operation's for obvious reasons."

Hensel says many folks in area four ask why the area pick-up rotation isn't switched for some years, Hensel says the area order is based on the amount of leaves.

"I get the question also, 'boy, the leaves aren't even down yet in Area One, what we try to do, the reason we start in One and Two, which, area two is primarily in the University district, is that those two districts have the most trees and the most leaves," Hensel said. "So, we try to get in and get those districts done as soon as we can."

Though it may have to wait till after snowfall, and perhaps even into February, Hensel says maintenance crews will be in all of the areas of Missoula. The public is asked to put their leaves out on the curb so they can be picked up and composted: no cinder blocks, trash bags, or used sofas please.