Dealing with garden waste

Dealing with garden waste can be managed in several ways. Here are some common methods for handling garden waste:

Composting: This is by far out preferred method of dealing with waste. Organic garden waste, such as grass clippings, leaves, and plant trimmings, can be composted to create nutrient-rich soil for your garden. This eco-friendly method reduces waste and provides a natural fertilizer. Composting is a natural process that breaks down organic materials into nutrient-rich soil amendment known as compost. This process can be done in a compost bin, pile, or tumbler. In addition to grass clippings, leaves, and plant trimmings, other organic materials such as fruit and vegetable scraps, coffee grounds, eggshells, and yard waste like small branches and twigs can also be added to the compost pile. Composting requires a balance of “green” materials (nitrogen-rich, such as grass clippings and kitchen scraps) and “brown” materials (carbon-rich, such as leaves and wood chips). The pile should be turned regularly to aerate it and speed up the decomposition process. Over time, the materials will break down into dark, crumbly compost. Compost is a valuable soil amendment that improves soil structure, adds essential nutrients, and enhances moisture retention. It also encourages beneficial microorganisms and earthworms, which further improve soil health. To ensure successful composting, it’s important to maintain the right balance of green and brown materials, keep the compost pile moist but not waterlogged, and turn the pile regularly to aerate it. Avoid adding meat, dairy, or oily foods to the compost, as they can attract pests and slow down the decomposition process. By composting garden waste, you can reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills, enrich your garden soil, and promote a more sustainable and eco-friendly approach to gardening

Mulching: We prefer to use composted material as a garden mulch as it provides a much more aesthetically pleasing look and nourishes the border. However shredded garden waste can be used as mulch to cover soil, retain moisture, and suppress weed growth. Mulching also adds organic matter to the soil as it decomposes. Use aged or composted wood chips to avoid nitrogen depletion in the soil as they decompose. Apply a layer of wood chips 2-4 inches thick, being careful to leave a small gap around the base of plants to prevent moisture-related issues. Grass clippings can act as a natural mulch, providing several benefits such as moisture retention, weed suppression, and soil improvement. As the clippings decompose, they also release nutrients back into the soil, acting as a natural fertilizer. Apply a layer of grass clippings around garden borders, flower beds, or vegetable patches. The layer should be around 1 to 2 inches thick. It’s important to let the grass clippings dry out a bit before applying them as mulch to prevent them from matting and creating an anaerobic environment.

Green waste collection: Many local authorities offer green waste collection services, where garden waste is collected and processed into compost or mulch. Check with your local waste management authority for collection schedules and guidelines. We would always recommend using council bin services to help manage our waste, especially for larger woody waste that would be harder to us to use for compost at home without the use of a shredder.

Burning: In some areas, garden waste can be burned, but it’s important to check local regulations and obtain any necessary permits before burning garden waste. It would be very rare for us to carry out any burning on site due to the other and often better option we have available to us.

Recycling: Some garden waste, such as woody pruning’s and branches, can be recycled into wood chips or used for biomass energy production. We take our waste to one of these locations and this is where most of out waste goes that is not composted on site.

By using these methods, garden waste can be managed effectively, reducing environmental impact and providing benefits for your garden and local community.