Walking around a residential area in Luxembourg, I noticed that each home had their wheelie bin for general rubbish in the front yard strangely placed in a neat, concrete-lined pit.

Some random front yard with a half-buried bin

It wasn't everywhere in Luxembourg, but nor was it just one home-owner - I saw at least 20 properties in a row that had it, suggesting it was a local ordinance rather than a personal choice.

I have shown this photo to many Europeans, who have expressed surprise and come up with many wild speculations, but I haven't found a Luxembourger to explain the practice.

Why are the rubbish bins "buried" in this way?

  • 4
    Wind blows them over sometimes and stray animals, especially urban foxes, can tip them over. This idea can prevent both. I would expect also there's an overarching cultural aspiration that 'everything has a proper place' and this approach complements that aspiration, but that part's a guess.
    – Gayot Fow
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 2:13
  • 2
    I thought I just gave two reasons: (1) It is an expensive (in terms of effort) solution to what appears to be a non-problem. (2) I would expect each home-owner to decide for themselves, which would lead to non-uniformity amongst Luxembourgers, and more prevalence in other countries. [If you really think this is an answer, please post it as one.] Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 2:36
  • 8
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because the connection to travel is missing, and "Home Improvement" is more competent diy.stackexchange.com
    – Gayot Fow
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 3:01
  • 6
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it's not about a problem faced by travellers. Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 4:29
  • 4
    @hippietrail then we should also close this: travel.stackexchange.com/questions/71995/…
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 7:41

2 Answers 2


Short answer, they are not.

It's something specific to that house.

Edit: I'm from Luxembourg and have never seen this, or perhaps only in isolated cases. It's certainly nothing national.

  • 4
    Question clearly mentions 20 houses in a row that had it.
    – Willeke
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 21:57
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    Then it is to that neighbourhood. I have been living in Luxembourg for 32 years and have never seen this.
    – Trefex
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 21:57
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    That's why I asked in a comment about the municipality. What you write is partly true, but that's still not an explanation. Specific to this neighbourhood or not, what is it?
    – Relaxed
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 22:34
  • 1
    I would say order. Some have some enclosures above ground, and this one is slightly in the ground. It might not be super smart though.
    – Trefex
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 22:41
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    @AndréPeseur: Ha! The plot thickens. I've been touring around Kirchberg with Google Street View and peering in people's front gardens and you are right! This phenomena is localised to just part of Kirchberg. This gets weirder and weirder. Commented Aug 31, 2016 at 6:59

The houses in this area are pretty small. Some even don't have a garage and neither or a cave that is accessible from outside. Even those houses with a garage are small and storing the dustbin outside saves some space and you are not bothered with bad smells.

Now, letting the dustbins stand outside has two drawbacks:

  1. It does not look very nice if you see dustbins all over the place. The landscpae looks much nicer when the bins are buried.

  2. These dustbins are relatively high and they can easily fall down when there is heavy wind or when children playing outside (or drunkards walking by) crash into them.

Partially burying the bins solves these problems. And the bins remain accessible.

This may sound weird, but as I said in a comment above, the "phenomenon" is localized to some streets that have been urbanized some 35 years age. If you go to other areas in Luxembourg-Kirchbegr, you will see that they came up with other solutions.


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