Composting? Which bin do you choose?

For those considering purchasing a compost bin with their Christmas cash (or what’s left of it), or if composting is your New Year’s resolution, then here are a few tips on the different kinds on the market.

Composting has been around for eons but experienced a resurgence of interest in recent years as recycling came in and as councils promoted composting and even gave out free bins.

Nowadays you are likely to have to buy your own, but there are companies that work with councils to provide discounts, such as

Composting is a natural way of turning your kitchen and garden waste into nourishing food for your plants.  And not only is it free, but it’s organic and gives you that sense of righteousness that you get from being environmentally friendly.

So if you’re keen to do your bit for the environment whilst helping your garden grow, then composting is the way forward.

There are two main types of composting bin: the plastic and the wood.  Plastic bins come in different sizes and are self-contained moulded drums with a lid and a flap for releasing the developed compost.  Wooden types can look rather like beehives with roof-shaped lids or can come as slatted square containers with or without a lid, some with open layers and some fully contained.

You can also get wire containers, often used for leaf mould.  The leaves can take 1-3 years to rot down and improve with the greater exposure to rain and frost.

If you already have enough bins and want to keep leaf mould separate, a simple way of composting fallen leaves is to put them into a jute composting bag and just leave them.  They will naturally turn into organic, rich compost.

For those of you who want to experiment with your compost and put different matter into different receptacles, there are companies that sell single, twin, triple and quadruple bins with separate compartments.

You can also buy sprays and formulas to activate the bacteria in your compost bin, making the compost rot more quickly.

So have a think about composting – it’s part of the permaculture lifestyle and at Gabriel Ash we believe that is the way forward.

Read more about buying a compost bin at