In 2012-2013 the recycling rate in England was around 43.9% compared to previous figures showing a recycling rate of 31% for 2006-2007. This positive trend implies that future results should be aligned with the 2020 European recycling target, stating that the UK needs to recycle at least 50% of the its produced waste. New figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS)’ May 2015 report indicates that from September 2013 to September 2014 the recycling rate was around 45%.
One of the elements influencing positively those results concerns the increase in production of household compost that reduces the amount of waste that is sent to landfill.
A definition of Composting
The action of Mother Nature to recycle decomposed organic materials into a rich soil creates what is called compost and can be used for various purposes such as being a fertilizer for your garden. To obtain compost you need to let your organic waste decompose, which brings nutrients back to the soil and continue the cycle of life. Finished compost looks dark brown and smells like forest floor.
Currently, several techniques are in use to obtain compost. However, the most widely used one concerns backyard composting that is producing compost in a certain container at the back of your house. To be able to do so, you need to balance brown materials such as fallen leaves or straws and green materials such as grass or food scraps.
How Can I Obtain Good Compost?
To get good quality compost, you need to follow several steps to ensure that the final result will be successful:
1. Make sure you possess the 4 ingredients that need to be balanced in order to get a good compost:
Be careful, browns or greens do not depend on the color of those materials but rather on the carbon/nitrogen rate.
For example, Greens have a carbon nitrogen ratio of 30:1 meaning that they possess a high nitrogen rate such as grass clippings, fruits and vegetables and weeds and plants
2. Remember to never compost animal products; it could interrupt the composting process.
3. Chop the ingredients to get faster compost. You can also add wooden cardboard pieces to ensure that diverse elements are included into your compost. However, be careful not to shred green pine trees, it does not compost well due to pine resin.
4. Use a ratio of 2 to 3 times more browns than greens to get optimal compost.
5. Regularly mix the ingredients to ease the air inside the mixture. It will make the decomposition process faster.
6. Water the mix to get moisture that will also accelerate the composting process.
7. Finally, ensure that your compost is located in a place that benefit from a good sun exposition in order to allow worms to finish the process and get your compost ready for use.
5 Reasons to Join the Composting Experience
• Recycle your organic waste such as yard and kitchen waste and thus reduce the waste you send to landfill!
• Diminish your use of pesticides: by doing so, your garden will go better because healthier. The taste of your fruits and vegetables will improve subsequently.
• Increase plants production of vegetables and fruits and their ability to fight diseases.
• Save money: you do not need pesticides or soil conditioners anymore!
• Get a better soil, benefiting from organisms that improve its productivity! No more santy soil!
– ONS https://www.gov.uk/government/
– Video about composting:
– Composting information: http://eartheasy.com/grow_
Alexia Izaute is a communication assistant at http://www.greenmatch.co.uk/