Each year Waipā residents throw thousands of tonnes of organic waste into the rubbish that could go into a compost bin instead. Organic waste are things like grass clippings, leaves and other greenery and food waste such as fruit and leftovers.
There are loads of benefits to having a compost bin. They’re a cheap and easy way to deal with your food and garden waste, they lighten up your rubbish bag or wheelie bin and they stop the production of methane gas by removing organic waste from landfill. They’re also a great way to save money and you get a natural fertiliser for free.
A healthy compost bin should be a mix of garden and food waste with sunlight, airflow and a little water. Browns such as fallen autumn leaves, paper and cardboard are particularly great as they are rich in carbon. Greens such as fresh cut grass, fruit and vegetable scraps, eggshells, tea leaves and coffee grounds meanwhile, are rich in nitrogen. An optimal compost bin should be 70 per cent brown and 30 per cent green. Things such as meat, bones, fat or seafood are a no no for your compost bin as are oil, takeaway coffee cups and noxious weeds.
If you are interested in making your own composting bin at home, Waipa District Council is holding its annual composting workshop in Cambridge. We'll have a local greenie teaching the how to's and what to put in your compost bin to make it thrive. Tickets are free but limited so get in quick and get yours. Head 200 meters past the Community Garden to find the Resthaven Community Center where we'll start our workshop. See you there!