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Composting related

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Thursday 12 August 2004 5.13pm

Would anyone know how, or have any ideas where, to get hold of any of the following *free* and locally:

- sawdust or smallish wood chippings (any joiners, timber merchants or otherwise apart from TP just off Union St?)

- grass cuttings and leaves (I know I'm setting myself up for some hum(or)ous replies with this! Really asking where the council dumps their garden/park-conservation waste - may as well make use of it!)

- hay/straw

- horse manure (!)

- chicken droppings (!!)

Yes, have taken up the council's cheap compost bin offer! Anyone else taken up composting? How's it going and have you found some free ways to add to your heap?

Thanks very mulch

Thursday 12 August 2004 5.33pm
Try city farms. Mudchute on the Isle of Dogs have horses. Surrey docks is our local one, 020-7231-1010 and they dont have horses but have all sorts of other interesting manure. They like a bit of a donation though - why should they give you all that wonderful nutritious stuff for nothing? There's also a stables in Rolls Rd or thereabouts, not sure exactly where.

On the subject of home composting, I believe there will be a stall on Saturday at Southwark Playhouse's Mint St event

where you can find out about wormeries from CRISP (Community recycling in Southwark Project). I have a wormery on my balcony and its a great success. I love feeding my worms and seeing how they're getting on (it has been said before on this forum that I should get out more...)
Thursday 12 August 2004 9.05pm
Golly if you're that desperate:

1. hedge trimmings - available for free in brown paper bags outside my front door. come & help yourself as I suspect I'll wait in vain for the council to take them away. PM me if you really want to pick mine up & I'll tell you where to come.

2. Try sweeping leaves up off the street. Council will be grateful.

3. Volunteer to cut the hedges in your nearest park. Actually, just do it, and I'm sure the Council will be grateful.

But be careful that you do not use up more energy than you save. If I were you, I'd go to B&Q and buy some nice compost.

Horse manure needs to rot for at least a couple of years, otherwise it's far too acidic & little will grow properly in it. Be warned.
Friday 13 August 2004 6.58am
Hang On, surely the whole point of composting is to dispose of one's own houshold waste in a 'green' manner i.e. reducing waste in to landfills. Therefore it provides an efficient method for breaking down organic matter to use on your own garden.

I don't believe that the purpose is to actually go and find other waste, not from your own house, with which to create compost.

Maybe I' m missing something here?
Friday 13 August 2004 8.40am
Kies, I'm glad you have brought the subject of composting to the forum. We started with the council compost bin over a year ago and followed the layering instructions to the t. The contents still look exactly as they did then - What's going wrong?

TUMJ - your wormery, does it have to be moved inside during the winter? I had some info through from Wriggly Wormers - their system requires indoor space during winter or the worms die and the thing has to be re-stocked. I am hoping that the production of worm compost is a damn sight easier than the garden waste variety
Friday 13 August 2004 9.23am
bmovie - are the contents dry & frazzled - it'll need some moisture in there to keep it wet enough to compost.
Friday 13 August 2004 9.36am
I'll get the hose - thanks Mapmaker
Friday 13 August 2004 10.01am
Don't over-wet it! I presume it is rather dry looking?

You can buy something called 'garotta' from B&Q which helps the rotting process.

What have you got in there?

imagine leaf mould - rotting leaves such as you see in piles in parks in the autumn. That's what your compost heap should look like. It's possible that you didn't have the bin full enough with sufficient moist material when you started - and if you started last summer (when it was very hot & dry) I'm not entirely surprised! Try a piece of old carpet on the top of the heap to keep it warm & moist.
Friday 13 August 2004 11.40am
There's a stables on St James's Rd (near South Bermondsey station), believe it or not, and they always have a sign up saying free horse manure - you just need to take your own bag to collect it.
Friday 13 August 2004 12.10pm
And you lot think cidermaking is odd?

...if you press it, they will come.
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