Compost bins and water butts
Home composting requires hardly any effort and is suitable for everyone. All you need is a composting bin and plenty of kitchen or garden waste.
The average household bin contains 43% of organic material which could be composted. This includes items such as eggshells, tea bags, fruit and vegetable peelings. This rots in landfill sites fairly quickly, but when buried like this, it produces methane which contributes significantly to global warming. These materials can be easily composted either in a traditional compost heap or a special bin. In addition to this, grass cuttings, leaves, pruning and small plant clippings can also be composted. Composting is an excellent way of reducing the amount of waste that goes to landfill.
Compost helps your garden and minimises the need for chemical fertilisers that can harm the environment and are costly to buy. Home made compost is equally as good and is absolutely FREE. By composting you also cut down on the need to buy peat based products. Most commercial compost comes from peat bogs - these provide natural habitats for rare plants and animals and are almost extinct.
How do I start composting at home?
Collect your kitchen waste (use an old plastic container in the kitchen) and garden waste and use one of the three ways to compost at home:
1) Pile it into a heap in an allocated part of the garden (on bare soil), cover with something waterproof and let nature do the rest.
2) Buy a compost bin
To support local recycling efforts, cut price compost bins are on offer. Prices start from £8.49, plus £5.99 delivery charge. Order from www.gcc.getcomposting.com/composting.
3) Build a compost bin/heap
You can make your own compost bin from wood (old pallets are useful), wooden posts and wire mesh lined with thick cardboard or old carpet. Cover it with carpet, a wooden lid of black plastic to keep the rain out and heat in - this will help quicken the rotting process.
Don’t let rain water go down the drain!
Water butts can collect rainwater from the roof of your house, shed, greenhouse or garage. It is a great way of having a free source of water for your garden plants, washing the car or even the dog!
There are several styles and sizes of butts to choose from. Most come with taps and have a rain diverter kit, stand and lid available. It is possible to fit a downpipe directly into the butt, however, you would also need an overflow pipe. If you fit a rain diverter, these divert water from the drainpipe into the butt until it is full, when it then flows down the drainpipe. You need to ensure the diverter kit is the correct size for your drainpipe.
- You can purchase a reduced price water butt from www.gcc.getcomposting.com/waterbutts