How to compost with or without a garden

It’s National Compost Week! How to compost with or without a garden is no doubt a popular question amongst the gardening community. Not only is it positive for the environment, but it can also be important for the garden as well helping to promote healthy growth and sustainability.

What is compost?

Compost is made up of food scraps and kitchen waste, such as eggshells, fruit and vegetable ends and corn cobs and stalks. The best thing about compost is that you are not throwing away anything essential, only the bits and pieces that would end up in the bin anyway. This makes creating compost an easy task and something that everyone can do. It is also great for the environment. A win-win!

Other elements that make up a good compost are from the garden itself. Leaves, shrub prunings, lawn or garden weeds, grass and flower clippings.  Even household items like cardboard and shredded paper make great compost! But remember to steer clear of any raw materials like bones (meat or fish), banana peels or diseased plants.

Each of these come together to add much needed nutrients to the garden, restoring vitality to the soil and promoting faster plant growth and health. Good compost comes from a healthy 50/50 mix of all the above to create nitrogen and carbon which makes the garden grow. Nitrogen comes from the green materials such as leaves and weeds, while carbon comes from brown materials such as cardboard and pinecones. But, enough chemistry lessons, you want to know how to compost!

Composting with a garden

There are several ways to make good use of all the space you have in your garden and create somewhere to cultivate your compost. The easiest way is with a compost trench!

Step 1:

Dig a deep trench about 60cm deep. Ensure you have a nice amount of space that can be filled with your compost mixture.

Step 2:

With each compost mixture cover with soil. Continue this step until the trench is full, coating one last time with soil. This will allow each layer to rot down and start creating the moisture and nutrients that your plants will love.

Step 3:

Sow or plant your seeds on top of the compost trench and their roots will grow down into the nutrient filled soil which, thanks to the compost, will start promoting a healthy growth and beautiful bloom. Remember to water regularly.

Composting without a garden

Even if you do not have the space to create a compost trench there are still easy ways to achieve the same growth as those who do!

Step 1:

If you already have a compost bin then great, if not then they can be easily purchased or made. Just ensure that it is deep enough to hold many layers of compost and soil.

Step 2:

Much like with the trench, start to create layers of scraps and then cover with soil. Remember to water regularly.

Step 3:

Sow or plant your seeds on top of the soil. This is where things differ a little, once your plants have started to sprout you can transfer them from the bin to your usual planting space. As the roots have started in the compost, they will be full of nutrients that will aid them as they continue to grow. Or they can remain in the bin until they have fully grown.

National Compost Week is a great time to start thinking about the other benefits to having a garden. Whether it be fresh produce or blooming flowers, there are many ways to continue making a positive impact on the environment and cultivate the garden of your dreams.

Check out some of our other blogs:

New Year’s Resolutions for the Garden

As we say goodbye to another lovely year, it’s time for us to welcome a fresh start and look towards a great year ahead. New Year’s Resolutions are a fantastic opportunity to try something new, and where better to make a positive change than in the garden? Below we have compiled some tips and ideas on how you can maximise your garden this year.

Start a compost heap

 

 

 

 

 

 

Generating your own compost is a fantastic (and free!) way to make an impact on your garden, as well as reducing your contribution to landfill. Spreading the finished compost into flowerbeds greatly improves soil quality by helping it it to retain moisture, suppress weeds, boost plant growth, and reduce the need to use chemical fertilisers and pesticides.

You can put so much into your compost. Waste such as fruit and veg peelings, eggshells, coffee grounds, teabags, garden waste, used paper napkins/towels, unwaxed cardboard and paper (ripped into small pieces), most food waste, toothpicks, even hair!

Start growing your own vegetables

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contrary to popular belief, a large garden with lots of space is not essential to successfully growing your own fruit and veg. Dependant on the variety, many fruits, vegetables and herbs can be grown in beds, borders, containers, or pots. Meaning that even the smallest of spaces has the potential to yield a bumper crop!

The benefits to growing your own fruit and vegetables are in abundance; home grown is fresher, it tastes better, it contains no chemicals, saves you money, and reduces single-use plastic packaging so is much better for the environment. Not to mention how rewarding the results are.

Check out our wonderfully wide selection of fruit and vegetable plants here.

Encourage wildlife into your garden

Encouraging wildlife into your garden is really rewarding and truly brings it to life. It positively impacts the livelihood of certain species and is incredibly beneficial to your garden; reducing the spread of weeds, pollinating your plants, and keeping garden pests such as slugs under control.

Grow Wildflowers

Bees and butterflies are drawn to wildflowers, and are a great way to attract wildlife into your garden. Our Buddleia weyeriana ‘Sungold’ is a particular favourite of butterflies.

Click here to view online.

 

Create a Water Feature or Pond

If you have space for a pond this will diversify your garden ecosystem and allow you to keep fish and frogs as well as attracting beautiful insects like dragonflies. If not, a small water feature will help to attract different creatures.

 

 Hang a Bird Feeder

A bird feeder filled with unsalted peanuts, fat balls, or seed mixes are ideal for attracting a range of bird species. Alongside this it’s a good idea to have a bird bath of some kind to provide your feathered visitors with a water source for drinking and washing.

fill your 2020 garden with hanging baskets

The easiest way to add something new to your garden this year is with one of our Premium Pre-Planted Hanging Baskets! We have various styles and colours to choose from, and there is something to suit every garden. Our premium 14 inch diameter Rattan baskets are pre-planted with the highest quality UK-grown summer plants and delivered nursery-fresh direct to your door. Simply hang them securely in their chosen location, water, and they’re ready to go.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! And if you only manage to have one resolution this year, make it to find a little more time to enjoy your garden!