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i am trying to decide whether its better to cover or not to cover my compost bin....i have two, the covered one dries out very quickly as it gets hot and i have to keep watering it...whereas, the other rots down slower but is cooler as it is not covered...any suggestions please
Is 2ft sq to small for a compost bin? I have a very small garden, but have too much kitchen waste for my wormery.
@sheilac: The two do not contradict, but complement each other. Once layered, some of the material is on the inside where it will get quite hot ... 170 F / 75 C for a long time. This will kill off both weed seeds and pathogens. But the outside edges will barely get warm. Turning the mix evens out this process. Oh, don't bother adding soil to the mix ... it only makes it heavy while adding no benefit at all. There is no need for any form of inoculation.
I cover my compost with an old carpet but I'm dismayed by the near immediate appearance of woodlice - and the large quantity that starts to thrive under the warm, dark and wet cover! How to avoid?
@jazcaz: make your piles 1 cubic meter (1x1x1) or slightly larger. At this size they are self-insulating. Adding water is a part of above ground composting and should be done every time the pile is turned or dry material is added. The faster method is the better one, as it is doing a better job of sterilizing the lot.


If the heap has to be layered as it is built, then surely mixing it is contradictory?
I shred all documents with address details on for identity theft and I use the shredded paper like straw as a source to layer - add air in between grass cuttings particularly and stops veg waste getting too wet and cold
@ nanatigtig Yes, 2ft sq IS too small for this type of composting ... it will not have sufficient mass to hold its own heat which, if done properly, should exceed 160 deg. F. (~70-76 C) for a prolonged period. If all you have is a small amount of extra scrap, dig a hole a foot or more deep in the garden, fill it with scraps. and then backfill it with dirt. The naturally occurring worms and beetles and so on will take things from there.
very interesting
I bought a 2nd compost bin because the compost in the 1st wasn't rotting. It was either unrotted or hard dark lumps with white areas. I continued to add my kitchen waste and ensured I had layers of cardboard but after several months the compost is no better. I put in grass cuttings, vegetable peelings, gone off fruit, tea bags, coffee grounds and egg shells as well as the cardboard. Any advice anyone?
Just started my compost bin; home-made from a big 'ol barrel too, talk about recycling!, and am now hoping all will go well and leave me lovely fertile compost for next spring.
If weeds go in your compost be sure you cut off roots, dispose in waste/burn.You will get away with annual weeds, but dandi,docks & nettles are really persistant. I find that works best for me.Making sure your composter is placed where you get sun most of the day aids heating up which will break down waste faster,& a good mix of waste helps, I even throw in my old hoover bags, hair from my brush, pet hair. A good tip if your man is queuing for the bathroom send him to your heap for a watering ;)
I have always put weeds in my compost but was wondering whether it would be best to leave them out in future. Any thoughts on this would be appreciated! Thanks.
I have just started a compost bin but have had to put it on concrete. Do I need to put worms in it?
I can help myself to a large amount of compost, it is nice and brown and crumbly as it has been rotting down for years, but the people who made the compost sprayed their veggie, is this compost safe for my plot. Would appreciate advice. thank you


is it O.K. to use old spent compost purchased from garden centres etc. Will mixing this with kitchen waste etc rejuvinate it?

Of course you could make worm compost with a wormery..... giving a much richer and finer end product

Of course you could make worm compost with a wormery.....

giving a much richer and finer end product

Anne Hulse
I have a Tortoise who's bedding is made from wood substrait chippings would this be ok to use his used bedding in the compost bin?
I bought a black plastic compost bin from my local council, but nothing much seems to happen. Any tips on how to get compost from it in the 6 months advised?