Composting, we all know the word, but what does it mean, how does it help and why should we be doing it?
Quite simply, composting is the process of organic materials decomposing into a nutrient rich soil, called compost.
There are many added benefits that compost can have such as:
- Increasing soil nutrients
- Ridding your garden of pests and insects
- Saving money spent on fertilisers and insecticides
- Reducing the amount of water needed for your garden
- Most importantly preventing organic waste from being sent to landfill.
Organic waste, when left to decompose in landfill produces a highly noxious gas called methane (the highest impacting gas of all greenhouse gasses).
With these key points, we can begin to see the need for composting and its value to us. However, we understand that home composting is not for everyone, and that’s completely fine – as long as we are still using our kerbside organics bin.
What can go in?
It is often mistaken that only outdoors green waste such as, lawn clippings and branches, are fit for the kerbside organics bin, but in actual fact, there is a whole range of items that can be popped in.
Here is an easy to remember mantra! “If it grows, it goes! (in the kerbside green organics!)”
10 everyday items that may surprise you:
- Eggshells – crush your shells so that they break down even faster.
- Stale bread, biscuits, chips and crackers.
- Soiled cardboard – unwaxed cardboard boxes (like pizza boxes) when soiled and unable to be recycled can be torn up and placed in the organics bin.
- Coffee grid, teabags and loose leaf tea – ensure that the teabags are made of natural materials like cotton or hemp, if in doubt just tear it open and put the leaves in.
- Pet hair – empty your pet brush into your organics bin.
- Animal waste – if collected in a compostable bag or newspaper. If collected in a plastic bag, open the bag and throw the waste in loose.
- Tissues and paper towel.
- Meat/s – true for most metro councils and some outer council areas.
- Newspaper – Shred to ensure it breaks down quickly.
- Fruit and Veggie scraps.
REMEMBER: be careful, placing non-compostable materials into your kerbside organics bin can result in the whole load being contaminated, possibly meaning that nothing within the load will be composted. Read 50 non-compostable items here.
Please ensure that you check the regulations of your local council, this is an outline of general compostable items than can vary between councils. Use the recycle right website when in doubt.