Become a compost convert

Posted by Holly Brooker on

Before I started composting I cringed at the vast amount of food I threw out, not to mention the ant infested rubbish bin that constantly smelled. Although I was cynical about composting at first, my Mum is an avid composter from way back so I thought I should at least give it a go. I now boast an ant free rubbish bin, a clear conscience about food waste and an overflowing vege garden. I'm a proud compost convert.

When I first started I thought it would be as easy as chucking in my food scraps and waiting for it to do its thing. I quickly learned that although composting isn't rocket science, there are a few crucial steps that will put you on the path to composting success.

Get your layer on
Composting may not be rocket science, but there is a science to it – literally! The key to great compost is layers that are a blend of carbon and nitrogen. If science isn't your thing just think 'dry' and 'wet'. Your dry materials (carbon) are dry leaves, sticks, twigs, and newspaper. And your wet materials (nitrogen) are fruit and vegetable kitchen scraps, lawn clippings, coffee grounds, tea leaves and manure.

To help give your compost a kickstart add some existing compost to each layer (our Living Earth compost is ideal). You also want to make sure it doesn't dry out so mix in a little water to keep your compost hydrated, but don't let it get too soggy (this is how compost can get really smelly!).

Keep it pest-free
Your compost will no doubt attract certain creepy crawlies (worms are the best!), but the last thing you want is larger pests crawling around like rats. The easiest way to avoid this? Make sure you don't add meat and dairy products to your compost. Any other kitchen waste you can go for gold!

Patience, patience, patience
It won't happen overnight but it will happen - it will take at least a couple of months to start breaking down. The end goal is rich dark brown compost with an earthy texture that believe it or not won't smell too bad. Your garden will love you for it!

Follow the guidelines above and you too can be a compost convert. And last but not least, don't forget a good quality compost bin! Our compost bins (made out of non-toxic macrocarpa) are available in two handy sizes and come in kitset form. Easy as.

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