Rubbish – this one word covers a multitude of different throw-away or disposable items.
Landfill areas for rubbish are becoming increasingly scarce and a costly issue.
It is common knowledge that consumers can easily reduce the amount of rubbish put out for collection just with a little care and forethought.
We can easily start in the garden. How many people fill up their green waste wheelie bin for collection? Tens of thousands. In many instances a large percentage of the green waste being disposed of could be recycled at home in the form of compost.
The benefits of composting are important. Less landfill would be of benefit to your local council whilst home-made compost will enrich the garden soil thus completing the cycle – you grow plants, enjoy, compost and return to the soil.
Obviously it isn’t quite as simple as that and some plant waste cannot be composted.
There are several brands of compost bins available.
Do some research and settle for one that is easy to manage.
You will need a flat space in an unobtrusive part of your garden preferably in more sun than shade (but not in full sun).
Compost needs to ‘cook’ and if the place where your bin is situated is too cool, the material inside will take a long while to break down.
You can easily construct your own compost area.
About one metre square is the size you need and have an open side to work from. If you can construct a series of three of these side by side, you have the perfect set-up.
One bin being used – the next nearly ready and the other being the new one you are adding to.
The motto you must remember when composting is: ‘Everything in moderation.’
It’s all about the quantity and mix of ingredients.
There are two basic sets of ingredients – green and brown.
Green includes grass clippings, kitchen scraps, soft prunings etc whilst brown is: straw, shredded paper, old dried leaves etc.
It’s generally accepted to limit the amount of citrus and onion skins into the mix, but if the quantities are small and well mixed in there should not be a problem.
Avoid any offal, meat or cooked food scraps – these increase the chance of vermin and can make the compost smell unpleasant.
The most important thing is to add everything in small amounts and layers.
Do not put a huge pile of fresh grass clippings in at one go.
This can either end up as a black smelly mess or just not decompose at all.
Layers – that’s what composting is all about.
A small amount of blood and bone helps as does a pinch of garden lime.
The compost should generate enough heat for beneficial bacteria to break down the ingredients and produce a sweet smelling mix.
It should be kept very slightly moist and turned fortnightly.
Go on…you can do it…start today.
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