Composting and Recycling by Kelvin Mason

Our October Zoom meeting was presented by Kelvin Mason.  His talk Composting and Recycling was very helpful to those who do make compost and those who are interested to try.  The benefits are:

Saves money on fertiliser

Reduces pollution

Can be self sufficient in organic matter

Good soil improver

Good garden husbandry




Wood panels on bricks

Tumblers (can cost £300)

New Zealand box

Solid sides are better as they hold the heat better.  Ideally the heap should be in sun or part shade and not under trees. Should be a cubic metre or larger and covered with carpet, woven plastic or metal.  Have two bins if possible.


Building the heap

Use 50/50 green and brown waste and cut woody pruning into small pieces.  The bottom of the heap can be started with 75 mm  of prunings, sunflower or sweet corn stalks.  Other things to include are kitchen peelings, fruit skins, old bedding, weeds, grass cuttings, paper, cardboard, hedge clippings, wool and cotton. Do not use infected matter.

Add activator every 25cm and turn the heap.  This can be a bought product, comfrey or nettles, grass cuttings and horse manure.

Good compost should be dark brown, fine and crumbly with a sweet smell.



Ideas include reusing plastic seed trays and modules

Plastic meat trays and bottles

Jam jars as cloches

Net curtains as fleece

Bubble wrap to insulate greenhouse and insulate containers

Sheets of plastic to cover dug soil in winter

Margarine tubs to grow seedlings and mustard and cress


Lots of ideas then to use in our gardens and also help the environment.