Compost bins and worm farms are a great way for you to avoid sending food scraps and garden waste to landfill, because you’ll be producing environmentally friendly, natural fertiliser that your garden will love.
$90 Bonus to Get you Started
Come to a 'Composting & Worm Farms' workshop at Kimbriki’s Eco House and Garden Education Centre or the Coastal Environment Centre, learn more about ecological gardening, and receive a $90 voucher to put towards purchasing a worm farm or compost bin.
Compost Bin or Worm Farm?
Choosing between a compost bin or worm farm might simply depend on the type of garden you have.
- The ideal location for a compost bin is somewhere with sun, good drainage and some shade in summer.
- A worm farm needs moisture, good shade, drainage and cover.
You can compost a mix of materials, including fruit and vegetable scraps, green garden waste, coffee grounds, egg shells, old potting mix, dead flowers, human and animal hair. Add dry leaves, woody twigs, paper, straw and some water. You can’t compost pet faeces, meat, fish, dairy products, oil or chemicals.
Tips to Build the Perfect Compost in 8 Weeks
Start with 15cm layer of twigs or coarse mulch for drainage. Add thin layer of kitchen and green organics. Cover with layer of brown garden organics, ensuring no food waste is exposed. Moisten well. Repeat. Sprinkle soil or finished compost on top of food scraps for richness and less odour. Turn with garden fork or compost aerator to add air.
What you can do with Compost
- Mulch around trees with compost to encourage healthy plant growth, but not too close to the trunk.
- Apply twice a year to native plants.
- Use sifted compost as a top dressing for lawns, for potting mix and seed raising mix.
- Use woody leftovers for mulch or compost them again.
Worms enjoy vegetable and fruit peel, juicer pulp, tea bags, crushed egg shells, bread, and small amounts of paper and cardboard like shredded egg cartons. Some worm farms will handle dog and cat faeces. Smaller scraps are easier and quicker to digest. Worms don’t like acidic foods like citrus peel or onions.
How to Set up your Worm Farm
You can use the valuable worm castings as natural fertiliser in your garden. The liquid that your worm farm produces is rich nutrients. It’s powerful stuff, so dilute it before you use it on your pot plants.