|Composting is an easy way to create good garden soil and fertiliser and can be used as a tool for decreasing our waste. Each year Australians produce approximately one tonne of waste each. Of this, organic compostable waste (food waste and garden waste) can make up approximately half of the waste going into the household waste stream each week, making composting an effective and beneficial method of reducing waste going into landfill.|
- Reduces the amount of waste going to landfill
- Reduces production of greenhouse gases that contribute to the enhanced greenhouse effect
- Can be used to recycle organic waste from kitchen and garden into free organic fertiliser – replicates the natural recycling process
- Returns essential minerals and nourishment to the soil
- Converts waste into nutrients
- Improves soil water holding capacity, soil structure and increases aeration of soil
- Helps to break up heavy clay soil
- First, buy or build a compost bin or heap. Compost bins are available at most garden stores. It is also easy to build your own. If you are going to build your own, there are many different styles of doing this. It is possible to used old wood offcuts or spare bricks to build walls to enclose your heap. Alternatively, you may wish to just make a pile, rather than to place you compost heap inside of a bin or enclosure. You will need something to cover you compost with. You can use old hessian bags for this.
- Choose a location for your compost bin. A warm shady spot is best. Place the compost bin in a spot that is protected from the heat of the sun and from heavy rain. The underside of the compost bin or heap will need to be in direct contact with soil.
- Next, line the bottom of the heap with sticks and twigs. This will allow air to circulate through the compost.
- Begin layering the compost ‘food’ onto the heap. It is important to alternate layers between green food and brown food to allow for a good mix of materials.
- Remember to regularly turn your compost heap (not including the bottom layer of sticks and twigs) to ensure there is sufficient air supply in the compost and to speed up the rate of decomposition.
- Once your compost is ready to use, it will appear dark brown or black and crumbly and will have an earthy smell. It will also be cool to touch. This can now be placed on your gardens.
|Air||Turn compost every week so there is plenty of air getting into the compost. This will help the material to break down faster and keep any smell away|
|Diversity||It is important to have a range of different materials in the compost. This can be done by alternating layers of green and brown foods.|
|Aliveness||Bugs and worms mean the compost is working.|
|Moisture||Keep compost damp, but not wet.|
Do Not Compost
|green leaves||brown leaves||rubbish|
|green grass clippings||brown grass clippings||oily food|
|fruit scraps||hay||weeds with seeds|
|tea bags||shredded newspaper||dairy|
|coffee grounds||crushed eggshells||magazines|