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Do any of you home compost???


Grappling with life
I am having trouble getting my waste to actually compost!

I got my big ol' compost bin late last spring/early summer. I don't have a lawn, my whole garden is pebbles and concrete and I have a few small flower beds and lots of pots for my plants. My compost bin is placed on concrete, but there is a layer of gravel on top of that to allow for drainage, I also threw some "bought compost in the bottom and have since been chucking all my compostable waste in there. Its about half way full. Its in sunlight and I have very occasionally turned the waste and sprinkled with water. In the summer I had little fruit fly things that would fly about if I took the lid off which I have been told is fine.

I was told I would start getting compost about 6-9 months down the line but to be honest it all just looks like the same old rotten kak I threw in there.

So I was thinking, should I move my compost bin to the edge of my flower bed so its actually on some "dirt" it would overlap the bed so it will still be partially on concrete, but in this position it would not get as much sun. Or is there something I can buy to throw in there to help it or chuck some worms or something in???? I must admit I don't relish the thought of moving it.

Any advice greatly appreciated.
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Gold Member
S: 33st5.5lb C: 19st11lb G: 16st9lb BMI: 33.7 Loss: 13st8.5lb(40.75%)
compost bins are supposed to sit on soil.. how else do the worms get into it?
failing that, go dig some up and put them in there..
do you mix in some "brown"? twigs and bark and the like.. or is it all kitchen waste?


Grappling with life
I understand they are best on soil, but was told it would work on concrete but would need drainage etc. Do you think I would be better moving it to at least part soil? There is no where in my garden it can be on complete soil, unless I dug a chunk of my concrete/pebbles up..... hmm that could work?

Yes should have mentioned I follow the green/brown mix, its not all just kitchen waste.

So do you think I should just move the whole thing or try digging up some worms and putting them in there first?

I am planning (weather permitting) to get out into my garden and start sorting it out tomorrow, I have just sort of neglected it over the winter.

I really want to get the knack of this composting lark as I do enjoy growing things. I have a little greenhouse that I grow veggies in too. I have only lived in a house for 2 years and prior to that I have never had a garden so its all still fairly new to me.

S: 18st6lb C: 15st7lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 35 Loss: 2st13lb(15.89%)
My compost bin stuff has not rotten down for ages as it is so blimmin cold! I put some Garotta compost maker in it to try to warm it up - it is some kind of accelorator, but everything is still frozen lol

I can't wait for the Spring to start sowing again!
S: 18st6lb C: 15st7lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 35 Loss: 2st13lb(15.89%)
This is a good site for info...

Recycle now - Home Composting

If it is possible to remove the paving below the compost bin, then this is the best solution for paved or courtyard gardens but, if not, there are a few things you need to bear in mind.

Some liquid might seep out of the bottom of the bin and stain paving both underneath the bin and sometimes around it. If this is likely to be a problem, then you should consider building a small raised bed filled with soil to put your compost bin on.

Liquid should be contained within the soil in the raised bed and you can always plant up around the bin to make it a feature. If you are putting your bin onto old paving and staining is not an issue, you will need to introduce the soil-dwelling organisms manually.

You can do this by adding a shovelful or two of soil to the bottom of the bin or, better still, get some home compost from a nice mature bin. It may take a little longer for your bin to get started but it will soon be full of life.


Grappling with life
Mine isn't frozen just ambient!!! I haven't tried adding anything "chemical" to it to speed it up but think I may have to consider it, that or moving it and I don't relish that task!

I really want to nail it as I really do enjoy my garden when the weather warms up.


Mad old Bat with Attitude
S: 14st5lb
I find that mine takes over a year to rot down in my dalek! It just doesn't get hot enough and I don't turn it often enough either. It does however produce beautiful stuff eventually! I now have 4 so I shall transfer from one to another (or OH will!) every month or so this year.


Grappling with life
4 daleks!!! 1 is quite enough for me. Am going to try other options I think before I resort to moving it. I am sure I don't turn it often enough but mine definitely gets hot enough in the summer.

There is a spot I could move it to where I think it will do really well but I have one of my beautiful lillies there and I don't want to risk digging it up and moving it until its really started sprouting which isn't til about May.
It's okay to have it on concrete, just chuck any wormies in that you find around the garden :)
It took over a year for mine to get going, now it produces lovely compost.
I always line my little kitchen tub with a sheet of newspaper and then I fill it with the kitchen waste (veg and fruit peelings, tea bags, egg shells, ripped up toilet roll tubes), then the whole thing goes in the bin.
I've found the extra newspaper makes a big difference to mine. I also add all the shredding out of the paper shredder.

I don't put leaves or twigs or bark in as it takes far too long to compost down.

It's a matter of finding a balancing act, it takes time though. I also get flies in mine in the summer, every year and I just leave the lid off.


Grappling with life
Thanks Jaylou. I will bung a bit more newspaper in I think, do you know I have never thought of putting paper shreddings in, dur! I do empty the hamster cage in there though. I have just started buying those little compostable bags to line my caddy with so it makes it a little more easier to collect the waste. I am on a worm finding mission next week, sure the dog will help me!


Gold Member
S: 33st5.5lb C: 19st11lb G: 16st9lb BMI: 33.7 Loss: 13st8.5lb(40.75%)
don't let your dog out if you're digging for worms.. aren't they poisonous to them or something?? ( or is that slugs? )...


Grappling with life
Hi Coljack, yes slugs = lungworm, very nasty.

I doubt my dog would eat a worm, she is a bit prissy, doesn't like walking on mud or through puddles, or going out when its too cold! But what she does like is being right under my feet or at the very least no more then 2ft away from me. If I am on my knees in the garden at the flower beds she will come and settle herself on my calves, not really comfy for me.
S: 18st6lb C: 15st7lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 35 Loss: 2st13lb(15.89%)
Did you know that lily pollen is fatal to cats? I am guessing that if you have a dog and hamsters, you might not have a cat, but worth a mention as you say you have some. Don't know if it affects dogs too.
I'm starting a little veggie plot this year for the first time and I did consider setting up a compost heap. Problem is we spotted a couple of cockroaches on our patio and I'm a bit paranoid about encouraging them with all the kitchen scraps. They were a little too close to the back door for comfort really, once you get them in your kitchen they're a nightmare to get rid of! *shudder*
S: 18st6lb C: 15st7lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 35 Loss: 2st13lb(15.89%)
If the compost bin is sited far away from the house, it might lure them away. I have a little caddy near the cooker for chucking in scraps and eggshells. Walking to the composter at the end of the garden helps with weightloss (probably lol)

If you are in the UK, you might get a heavily subsidised dalek from your local authority. Mine was about a tenner with free delivery and a free caddy.

Good luck with your plot. There is nothing better than harvesting your own dinners. Homegrown tastes a million times better than shop bought. Just wandering about picking what you fancy *sigh* I can't wait for Spring.


Gold Member
S: 33st5.5lb C: 19st11lb G: 16st9lb BMI: 33.7 Loss: 13st8.5lb(40.75%)
gotta get my leeks seeded and growing ready for transplant when the weather gets better..

do we have cocroaches in the UK?
do we have cocroaches in the UK?
That was my exact reaction, but apparently we do! I think they're attracted to the wood pile we have around the side of the house. We're saving it for Neil's dad who has a wood burning fireplace, they like dark places it seems. I worry they were venturing out to have a sniff around our wheelie bins. I don't mind all this recycling business but the bins get very smelly and grotty, which roaches must love.

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