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Posted
  • Location: NH7256
  • Weather Preferences: where's my vote?
  • Location: NH7256

    it's the time of year when most gardeners are furiously weeding, and i get really miffed when i see people putting the weeds in their bins. i guess they're afraid they'll just propogate them if they put them to compost but there's no need because....

    gather all the weeds up on the lawn and mow them up with the grass! it's that simple - depending a bit on what sort of mower you have, but i have an electric rotary job which turns the whole lot to a green mulch. if you put it all on the compost heap, within 2 or 3 days it should be hot enough to kill off any remaining viable plant material. turn it thereafter to prevent any really grassy lumps turning to slime. having said that, i don't put in roots/runners of creeping soft-grass because i have found bits of that still growing in the heap a month later. the best bit is that because it's shredded, it matures within a couple of months at most, so can be used in the same season for preparing beds for winter veg. it's also possible to dispose of newspaper and cardboard in the compost heap - rip it up first and it disappears into the mix.

    the other waste that i use on the garden is wood ash - we have a wood-burning stove. i mix it in with compost before digging it all in. do not use coal ash - it's far too acidic.

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    Posted
  • Location: Brixton, South London
  • Location: Brixton, South London
    it's the time of year when most gardeners are furiously weeding, and i get really miffed when i see people putting the weeds in their bins. i guess they're afraid they'll just propogate them if they put them to compost but there's no need because....

    gather all the weeds up on the lawn and mow them up with the grass! it's that simple - depending a bit on what sort of mower you have, but i have an electric rotary job which turns the whole lot to a green mulch. if you put it all on the compost heap, within 2 or 3 days it should be hot enough to kill off any remaining viable plant material. turn it thereafter to prevent any really grassy lumps turning to slime. having said that, i don't put in roots/runners of creeping soft-grass because i have found bits of that still growing in the heap a month later. the best bit is that because it's shredded, it matures within a couple of months at most, so can be used in the same season for preparing beds for winter veg. it's also possible to dispose of newspaper and cardboard in the compost heap - rip it up first and it disappears into the mix.

    the other waste that i use on the garden is wood ash - we have a wood-burning stove. i mix it in with compost before digging it all in. do not use coal ash - it's far too acidic.

    On the whole I think you are right but: I would beware of composting weeds that have set seed (especially where the compost heap is not kept at optimum conditions: i.e. turned and aerated to allow aerobic decomposition).

    Good idea to use cardboard and paper (e.g. shredded personal documents from a home shredder) as well as straw and wood shavings to increase the Carbon element.

    One thing to be aware of is the danger of composting cuttings from disease-prone plants/shrubs such as roses: a very effective way to spread diseases such as powdery mildew!

    Regards

    ACB

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    Posted
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL

    if you have a persistant problem with ants, a composting bin is an ideal new home for them.. they break things down rapidly and leave a compost that is ideal for seeds.. the downside is when you come to use the compost.. if possible spread out a plastic sheet next to the bin and spread the compost about 4 inch thick over it and leave for a few hours.. the ants will recover their eggs and head for home.. facinating to watch..

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