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I've finish my compost bin well nearly but what would you put in the bottom first inch or two I thought I would put my conifer chippings in first but they contain to much acid so I'm thinking off bark or horse muck

before I add the compost I've been collection in green bins


what do you think ??

here is a photo of my newly made compost bins



That's a lovely bin James. artjak can tell you what to put in it. She's been on the course


I tend to put things like the twiggy dried stems of perennials at the bottom of my compost heaps, to make sure there's a good airflow at the bottom of the heap.


I put twiggy bits that havn't rotted well the first time round in the bottom. It all get mixed up anyway, but I believe the received wisdom is twiggy stuff in the bottom. Is that on a soil base so that the worms can get in, or are you going to add a starter of some brandlings and a bit of finished compost?


Thank you Nut

one side is for compost the left is for brown and I'm going to use my green bins(2) for storing green waste (grass cuttings)





Ok so a bag of bark first Yes it's on a soil base

I located the bin near the drive so I can turn the compost from the green bins before adding them to my compost bin




They look really well built. Can you still read your gas meter though or is that not their final resting position?


yes you can still get to the meter and open them.  all you have to do is pull the bins out (ones with wheels on them)



Dear CluelessG, I have not really understood this bit about 'green here' and 'brown there'. From the Compost Master Course I learnt that compost heaps or bins should be 50% green (nitrogen) and 50% brown (carbon). Green stuff is obvious; brown encompasses; straw, paper (scrunched up to carry air into the heap) cardboard, eggboxes etc. Also dried stems/leaves of plants (not trees - that would be for making leaf mould)  Personally I like to start a new bin with a good shovel of horse manure. If you can't get this, don't worry; the red worms will arrive anyway, you don't need to get any. An addition of human pee from time to time will act as an acelerator, but being a ladee I use a compost acelerator from the Garden Centre. What is IMPORTANT is to keep the thing airobic; full of air/ light and fluffy by turning it frequently. Aim for once a week in the summer and once 2 weeks in the winter; if you achieve half of that it will be fine. If it becomes anairobic (smelly, slimey) turn it thoroughly and add more browns.

Good luck and keep us posted.


Posh looking bins Clueless.

I have four daleks that stand on soil and at the start of each I put a covering of compost / garden soil and build up from that. Works for me.  


I have a great mountain of mixed stuff that breaks down eventually. There's always something left behind and that goes back in another heap

Hi everyone

I'm a newbie to this forum. Really enjoyed reading the above comments on compost and can see what I need to do to create a fab compost! 

Bye the way Clueless- compost bin looks great.



Well thank you Weyplotter and welcome

I hope to start filling it Monday as I'm away this weekend 70 birthday party to go to and a nice walk in the forest with my dogs on Sunday.


Sunday afternoon is xmas tree and decks to put up

Sounds like fun Clueless-enjoy!


No expert

Very good Clueless. And very true.


That youtube clip is very interesting, I love the fact that he is so passionate about composting; I would only query the names that he has given to the composting processes. What he initially talks about: shredded tree leaves, is a great way to speed up making 'leaf mould', which would otherwise take about 2 years in the chicken wire enclosure which I think he mentions. But he calls it 'compost'. What is commonly known as compost can be made in 5 or 6 months easily. But it is, of course, not just chucking kitchen waste into a bin, it is a proper, frequently turned mix of brown material and green, whether this is from the kitchen, flower or veg bed is not an issue.

The planet needs to compost, not incinerate or landfill. Lets get on with it; not grandstand about different processes.



OK today I started my composting

layer of cardboard

layer of leafs

a finally a layer of horse muck.

tomorrow I will add some more leafs before I add my compost mix I've been collecting since July/August after I have the go-ahead for the forum I have two old used grow bags with some weeds in of which I shall remove I'm I on the right track ???????


do you think I should go to the fishing shop and buy some worms for my compost bin


O'yes and a bucket of wee wee





I'm no expert on this but I really don't think you should buy worms for your bin (which is really lovely btw).  The process of normal composting, as I understand it, creates a lot of heat in the initial stages and that would either drive off or kill worms. After the compost has cooled down and is in its latter stages of decomposition worms would be safe to be added to help the final process.  I have a wormery and also normal composting bins and there are definite advantages to having both but they are separate things with different processes going on inside.  I have been known, however, to move a handful of worms out of the wormery to 'finish-off' nearly ready 'cooked' compost - but that's more to do with the fact I always have a surplus of rapidly breeding worms and need somewhere to put them before the brother-in-law decides to take them fishing.  They aren't 'garden' worms, so can't be simply released into soil. I seem to recall it's because they don't burrow deeply like earthworms but I may be mistaken.


For my compost bin i do 75% green/nitrogen - 25 % brown/carbon, its just a guide line really i add other stuff like bananas for potassium - kitchen waste etc. If it stating to get smelly you got to much Green, it wants to be smell earthy . Keep it well aerated by turning it, or into one compost bin into the other easiest way. Dont let it get to wet it will slow the process down,  i use a carpet for the top 

I nearly fill one of my compost bins about 3/4 weeks ago with loads of bedding plants, i put them right at the bottom of the bin when i was turning it. i thought it would take ages to break down, turned the compost bin yesterday and it all broke down already which surprised me a bit. I spent £40-50 last year on compost so i can make a nice saving next season hopefully  unless i go mad and want to grow more plant 


No perennial weeds / weeds with seeds on. Annual weeds a fine as long they not seeding 

Might be best to put leaves in a separate pile its up to you. they can take a while to break down. Monty puts leaves in a bin bag - fills with water - makes holes in the bottom then put them to the side for a year. I suppose it depends on the quantity of leaves you are adding what will determine how fast they will compost. 

Be careful you don't put to much grass cutting in, it can get quite compact and stops air flow and can dominate a bin and smell.