Start making your own compost

A large percentage of our daily household waste is organic and this waste can easily be turned into compost that can be used to enrich the garden.


Making your own compost is not only a good way to recycle a lot of your household waste, it's also a great way to make your own compost for adding to your beds and borders. If you are thinking about investing in a composting bin, below are some tips to get you started.

To make your own compost you can buy or make your own compost bin. If you prefer to buy a composting bin, Builders offer the First Dutch brand of compost bin priced at around R800 and perfect for small or medium households.

Once your composting bin is set up you can start adding organic materials to get the process started. Composting not only saves you money by eliminating the need for expensive fertiliser products, it's also an excellent way to add essential nutrients to the soil to help plants to flower and for healthy growth. Organic compost contributes to soil regeneration and aids in the distribution of moisture through the soil to plant root systems.

Adding organic compost to your soil on a regular basis will increase plant growth, so it's a fantastic addition to vegetable and herb gardens. A layer of compost around plants will also discourage weeds and help the soil to retain moisture during the warmer months of the year.

Here are some of the main types of household waste that can be placed in the compost bin:

• Vegetable peelings, excluding potatoes.

• Leftover or scraps of fruit, excluding citrus peels

• Salad greens

• Eggshells

• Teabags and coffee grounds

• Cardboard and newspaper

• Cotton and wool textiles

Here are some garden waste products that can be added to the compost bin:

Faded or dead-headed flowers, excluding weeds

Grass cuttings


Small branches from pruning

Old plants, excluding diseased plants which should be avoided

There are some items that should never be placed in your compost bin and these include:

Feces of any type including pets

Leftover meat or fish or dairy products


Synthetic products

When setting up a compost bin for the first time, it's important to let children be involved. They can have fun and learn all about gardening and perhaps even set up their own wormery. Worms are brilliant at making compost and kids will love this interactive activity and discover why it's important to recycle.