Start Composting

How much food do you honestly think you throw out every week?

Rather than this food being wasted and adding to the amount of CO2 being created in landfills, make yourself a compost bin and you will have a natural fertiliser for your garden. Composting is done all year round, as and when suitable materials are generated in the garden or home. 

According to Recycle Now “composting at home for just one year can save global warming gases equivalent to all the CO2 your kettle produced annually, or your washing machine produces in three months.”

There are various different types of compost bins available and some local authorities have schemes which allow you to buy discounted bins through them. If you fall under Derbyshire County Council, you can find out more here.

Bins retain some warmth and moisture and make better compost more quickly, but even an open heap, like the ones volunteers made at SEAG’s Shipley Woodside Community Garden, using donated pallets, will compost.

An earth base will allow drainage and access to soil organisms, but if you have to compost on a hard surface, then add a spade of soil to the compost bin.

We came across this great blog, which has 35 cheap and easy DIY compost bin ideas.

How does composting work?

Alternate layers of brown and green organic materials, starting with a layer of brown. Think of it like making a lasagne!

Always ensure cardboard and paper are shredded or cut into small sizes.

Stir the pile once a week. The oxygen helps the ingredients break down faster.

Water the pile to moisten, not much just the equivalent of a damp sponge.

A good compost heap will not be smelly and will feel warm. If it is cold, add more green material. If smelly add more brown material.

You know your compost is ready to use, when it is dark-coloured, crumbly and mostly smooth.

guide to compost

We have put together this simple guide to composting, you can download or print and put on your fridge!

If you have enjoyed this page, check out our other pages with steps you can take to reduce your waste.

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