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HI Lily Pilly

I DO know what a tombola box looks like - guess that makes me 27 too... 

How long do you think it takes to get the compost mature enough to use in the summer? I was wondering if they are quicker than my compost bins which take several months. Is yours large enough to accomodate much garden waste?

Love, love, love your garden by the way - you have done a really great job there

Top bird. Thank you, it is a labour of love, most of the time!

i use my tumbler for kitchen waste only.  We have big bins for garden stuff

the kitchen waste is ready in about three weeks, you have to remember to turn it.

cant see why it wouldn't  be the same for garden. Might not do the twiggy bits

Your garden looks lovely, put some latest ones on gallery?



Thanks Lily Pilly. It certainly sounds as though a tumbler might be good for a combination of kitchen waste and small soft garden waste.

For the moment I'm not putting kitchen waste in my big garden bins because I am a bit on the phobic side when it comes to rats. I did use kitchen waste until a rat took up residence in my old wooden bin & now I'm very careful(a bit on the OCD side about it if I'm honest!)

But a tumbler is off the ground and as near to rat proof as it's possible to get and it would be good to start recycling the kitchen stuff again. Three weeks is really quick - so I think you might have convinced me to supplement the big garden bins.

Thanks for your nice comments about my garden. Unfortunately that's my old garden! We moved a couple of years ago & I'm working hard to make a garden here from nothing - unfortunately we also have a house to do so progress is slow but I'm starting to get there. Might post some before and after pics soon....

Found my ancient instructions. It is made by Joraform a Swedish company 

I dont remember it as being that expensive but as it can be used all year round it is really worth it. No problem with any rodents, just noticed sone wasps in this afternoon.

i keep it in full sun.  Good luck with the new garden, so exciting to have a blank canvas!  Would you like to borrow our rotavator? 


Thanks Lily P - that's very helpful - will have a look see.

I'd love to borrow your rotavator - I could do a lot of damage with that!! Fortunately for the cat and the neighbours I have a man who brings his own when I need that sort of work doing.

It is fun (if a bit daunting at times) making a new garden and I'm doing it bit by bit. Some things I know exactly how they should be - other bits are a little harder to visualise. My OH is quite impatient & doesn't 'get' gardening so he sometimes finds it hard to understand that it is often better to let a garden take it's own shape over time - he enjoys the results tho' - especially on a hot day with a cold beer in hand!

It is only about 1/3 of an acre (much smaller & less grand than yours appears to be) but is plenty big enough for me to play in.

Would love to come and see your garden if you ever decide to open it to the public.

Thanks again for your help.



Hi Topbird, I have 2 medium Daleks and 1 large one (only got it a few weeks ago). I don't have bases for them, but they are situated in a sunny position on DPC, covered with gravel. In 10 years or so have never had problems with rats. The best way to deter rats is to situate bins near a high traffic area in your garden, the rats don't like that. So, for example, all my bins are just next to where I park the car, and on the way to the wood and kindling store. Also I empty kitchen waste into the bin at least once a day also garden waste. There is just too much activity for them to feel safe.

You could always hit the side of your bin with a bamboo cane every time you pass by

The Henry Doubleday Assoc. is now Garden Organic.


Thanks Artjak - that's a useful tip - I shall have a bamboo cane at the ready whenever I go outside!

Seriously though,  finding a rat in the bin was a bad moment for me & which is why I  take A LOT of preventative measures to prevent it happening again.

Ryton Gardens (home of Garden Organic) is  a really good day out for anyone with the slightest interest in composting and organic gardening (or just gardening in general)  isn't it? So much to learn & really good gardens too if memory serves me right.

I put weed killer on weeds some weeks ago, now pretty dead.  I'm planning on strimming off first.  Am I right to put this stuff on the compost heap?

Hester - Artjak will almost certainly know the definitive answer to your question.
I think it prob depends on the weedkiller used

If a non-residual glyphosphate & the weeds are dead you are probably ok. If, however, you used a residual weedkiller then I think you should dispose of them elsewhere as there's a risk of weedkiller remaining in your compost which won't do plants any good when you come to use it.
Wait & see if Artjak picks this up before acting though.

I never compost anything I've sprayed with weedkiller .... but I agree with Topbird, wait an see what Artjak says - she is the Compost Master.


(I feel like Dr. Who now) A few years ago there was a piece on Gardener's Question Time about horse manure that was killing people's gardens. It was caused by residues of weed killer (presumably for killing ragwort) that had passed through the horse's digestive system.

I don't know much about weed killers, but would NEVER personally put plants treated with it on the compost heap, just to be on the safe side. When I use 'Weed and Feed' on the lawn, the packet says not to compost the first 2 or 3 cuts of grass. I know some weedkillers are neutralised on contact with soil, but I still would not feel happy about this.

Have just looked through my notes on what one can and cannot compost; there is no mention of weedkiller. So am going to email Garden Organic and ask them.


Have just sent them a message, hopefully they will get back to me after the Bank Holiday

weeds treated with glyphosphate can be composted. adding other treated materials can actually stop the compost process. lawn weed and feeds and systemic treatments seem to be the worst-they are meant to linger but other weed killers are very long lived so probably better not to use any in the compost.

That seems definitive.  Thank you Artjak and David.



Bumping this as Garden Organic have emailed me to say they will answer query asap

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