How to start a compost bin

Posted: 28 Jun 2022

Homemade compost is invaluable in the garden – it’s a great soil improver, mulch and growing medium.

Follow these easy steps

1. Clear a well-drained space in your garden in semi-shade on bare soil and put your composter bin in place or construct your own with pallets.

2. Build a base in the bin of straw or twigs a few inches deep to provide drainage for the bin. 

3. Start adding and layering your materials, alternating between brown and green. 

4. Add Garotta Compost Accelerator to speed up the process, if desired. 

5. It is important to keep the pile moist, adding water if necessary, so that it feels like the consistency of a damp sponge. If too wet add more brown materials. 

6. Turn the pile every couple of week to add air so that the centre of the bin heats up. Aeration provides oxygen to the micro-organisms involved in the composting process. 

7. Keep the bin covered to prevent it drying out. 

8. It can take six months to two years to reach maturity. Mature compost will be dark brown with a crumbly soil like texture and smell like a damp woodland. 

9. Scatter the compost over the roots of existing plants in the garden and incorporate into the soil when planting new ones for healthy growth.


Did you know? 

Compost heaps can provide homes for wildlife, from anything from bees to hedgehogs, to slow worms and green shield bugs! 


How to start a compost bin

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