Compost Week Review

Compost Week Review

Wild Gazania

So International Compost Awareness Week draws to a close for 2019. I hope in the last week you have learned something new and have been inspired to change up the way you manage your food waste in your household.

What have we done at Eco Patch HQ in the last week?

I guess the biggest change I have made is to give my home compost bin a bit of love which involved me moving the bin to make it more accessible and also to get to the decomposed material at the bottom which has now been dug into the garden in preparation for me to put the brassicas into the ground and finally get my Autumn veggies going. I was amazed at the difference of the soil where the compost bin had actually been sitting. It was much softer and had an obvious change in colour from the rest of our red soil- below the bin it was dark brown.

Just goes to prove that compost does lead to soil improvement!!

The other things we have done this week is continuing to review the disposable/ regularly replaced items and swap to biodegradable options. I feel lucky in this activity, as I do have access to lots of things to try. I do try everything before I stock it in the shop so I can give my honest review of the items to customers. I did notice as I was digging over my compost today that the RetroKitchen Cloth and Safix scrub pads I put in the bin at the start of the year were gone- or not able to be recognised in the compost mix.RetroKitchen Biodegradable Cloth I could pick out the odd thing like eggshells which had not broken down and I am going to put into our green bin. I think I was perhaps being optimistic that the summer heat would help them breakdown but not the case. Lesson learned. So the good news is that these items are what they say they are- compostable at end of life.



 

I have really enjoyed some of the conversations that I have had both on social media and in person with people about composting. I think that it has been a great learning opportunity for all of us, as I learn from others as much as they learn from me- if not more at times.

So where to next?

This week has made me very alert to what my community is doing with organics. I would really like to spread the message further and I am considering contacting my local council to see if I can have a chat with someone about organic waste management on a bigger scale. It would be terrific if we could have some events in the local area for the next International Compost Awareness Week in 2020, as well as make some changes to the way that the community can dispose of organic waste.

On a more personal level, I will continue to give the compost bin the TLC that it needs to thrive and I am going to make a concerted effort to get just what we cannot manage in our home organic waste systems (Chickens & Compost Bin) into the kerbside collection. Reasons for doing this is two-fold. First- why give that magic material (compost) to someone else when I can use it at home to give me amazing veggies and chicken food, and second there is still a carbon footprint attached to commercial compost due to trucks transporting the waste to the depot for processing.

Kerbside Green Bin

My final recommendations

Don't feel bad if you are not doing anything with your organic waste yet. As they say, "Today is a good day to start something new". Why don't you set yourself one thing to change? Things you might like to consider;

  • use your kerbside green waste collection if you have one. Try to get as much organic waste into that bin and out of the landfill bin as you can.
  • get a backyard compost bin happening. If $ are tight, look on gumtree or facebook market place to see if you can get one secondhand or maybe even free.
  • or consider building a compost if you are that way inclined. Below is an image of the compost that my kid's school has up and going. Large Composting System
  • If you have space and the inclination- look at getting some animal helps, such as worms or poultry to help process your organic waste into more useful things (ie eggs or worm casting).
  • If you have a pet invest in some BioBags to collect their waste so you can put it in a green bin for collection.

I hope these tips have helped you a bit. Please do feel free to leave a comment below or reach out to me by email if I can help you with any composting questions. Otherwise, ask the amazing folks at your local garden centre for some help or advice or check out some of the amazing resources available online.