How do I make my own compost?

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How do I make my own compost?

Is making your own compost something you’ve never really considered before? If you have a garden and want to save money and do your bit for the environment at the same time, home composting is the way to go! Easy to make and use, composting is a simple, inexpensive and totally natural way of transforming kitchen and garden waste into nutrient-rich food for your garden, which has everything your soil, plants and flowers need to thrive.

All you have to do is put bio-degradable material from your home and garden into a compost bin and let nature take its course!

What and where?

Many of our customers have asked us to build them a compost bin so the size and design totally fits in with their garden. Over the last couple of years, there’s definitely been a rise in the demand for us to design and build bespoke compost bins.

The best place to put your bin is on bare soil as this helps with drainage and aeration, and allows insects and microbes to gain access to the rotting material. However, if you do choose to site it on patio, concrete or tarmac, it’s important to make sure that you add a base layer of paper and twigs for worms and insects to colonise. It’s also recommended that you choose a sunny or partially shaded area as this can speed up the composting process.

What can I use?

You will want a mix of ‘green’ and ‘brown’ waste to ensure that your compost has the right texture.

Green waste

Green material includes:

  • Vegetable and fruit peelings
  • Coffee grounds
  • Tea leaves and tea bags (non-chlorine kind)
  • Egg shells (wash first)

Brown waste

Brown materials can be:

  • Plant stems
  • Wood shavings
  • Twigs
  • Prunings
  • Egg boxes

What else can I use to make my own compost?

There are many other materials that can also go into your compost bin. These include:

  • Grass cuttings (avoid thick layers as when compacted they can turn to slime)
  • Weeds (but avoid any pernicious weeds)
  • Leaves
  • Straw and hay (soak if already dry)
  • Hoover dust (avoid if your carpets are primarily synthetic rather than wool)
  • Animal manure (but only from vegetarian pets such as rabbits and Guinea pigs)
  • Pet and human hair (yes, really!)
  • Spent hops

It will take up to nine months for your compost to be ready to use. Always lift off the top two thirds and use the bottom third of your compost bin as this material should be dark and crumbly. It’s unlikely that your compost will look the same as the bags you buy from the garden centre but don’t be concerned – it’s still incredibly beneficial for your plants.

Use your homemade compost as mulch on your beds, enriching borders and conditioning soil, layer around trees, or use as a potting mix, and watch as your garden is transformed by your home’s waste!

If you would like us to build you a compost bin, then please contact us on 01277 724720.

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