What Should You Do With Garden Waste During Lockdown?

With the COVID-19 outbreak sending the country into lockdown and affecting waste collection services, many councils have asked residents to start home composting to relieve the strain on garden waste collections across the UK.

Local authorities such as Cardiff Council and Somerset Waste Partnership

Authorities such as Cardiff Council and Somerset Waste Partnership have been encouraging residents to home compost to deal with their excess grass cuttings and hedge trimmings following the suspension of normal garden waste collections.

Craig Stephens, Campaign Manager at Recycle Now, says: “Local authorities across the UK are working hard to provide the best possible service during the COVID-19 crisis. Every bit of rubbish, recycling, garden and food waste we can reduce will make a real difference to maintaining a good service for everyone.”

There is so much information online about composting, it can be intimidating when first getting started, so we have some ideas on how to begin.


Step 1: The compost bin

Composting doesn’t have to cost the world to get going, and it can be started for next to nothing. Setting up a compost bin is easy and can be done without any expenditure by simply creating a heap or building a bay with old pallets.

If you decide to purchase a compost bin, it should be frost-, rain-, and sun-proof. A wood or recycled plastic bin is ideal to maintain the heat insulation and breathing capacity, creating the best conditions for decomposition.

When the right conditions are cultivated microorganisms thrive leading to the decomposition of organic materials. Conditions for successful composting are not just down to the type of bin structure you use but also where the bin is placed.


Step 2: What to put in

Once you have a bin and found the ideal location, then what do you put inside it?

Around 40 per cent of the average dustbin contents are suitable for home composting. Simply filling the bin with grass clippings is not enough, and it’s important to balance out green materials with refuse such as toilet roll tubes, cereal boxes, and egg boxes. Don’t worry about tearing the dry materials up, throw them in as they are and they will keep air in the bin and soak up moisture.

Meat, fish, dairy products and cooked food must not be composted as they can attract vermin.


Step 3: Keep on turning

Producing quality compost is a lesson in patience, as it can take anything between 9-18 months to mature. But while that is going on, keep turning over your compost to speed up the composition, keep the heap aerated, and keeping the microbes working.


Step 4: Use it

When your patience has paid off, and you ave some dark brown earthy-smelling material that resembles soil, the process is complete, but it is best to leave it for a month or two to ‘mature’ before it is used in your garden.

If you need professional garden waste removal in London, contact our team today.

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