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In the garden - BBC Radio Surrey DJ talks composting
Near his home in Farnham, John Negus is out in his garden whenever he can and regularly lectures at gardening clubs, W.I.s and many other societies.
We caught up with him to find out why he loves composting so much.
1. What types of kitchen and garden waste do you compost?
The great thing about composting is that you can use a lot of everyday household items. For example, tea bags and coffee grains; fruit and veg scraps and even cardboard from cereal packets. Pretty much anything organic, but not meat as this attracts vermin.
2. What do you use the compost for?
I use it for all types of planting needs – mix with soil to replenish pots, dig into flowerbeds and veggie patches and use it as a mulch to keep moisture in the soil and feed my lawn.
3. What do you enjoy about composting?
It is tremendously pleasing to watch raw materials break down into humus; to discover how warm the heap becomes. There is nothing more satisfying for a gardener than to recycle organic materials into plant foods that improve growth.
4. Have you saved any money from composting?
Yes, it saves me having to buy soil conditioner.
5. What is your top composting tip?
Keep materials moist or they won’t decompose. If ants appear, the waste is too dry. Warmth is key so remember to cover the compost surface.
6. What piece of advice would you give to someone who is thinking about composting?
Once you have your heap or bin, build the compost in layers, mixing ‘greens’ - tea bags, salad, grass cuttings and ‘browns’ - leaves, twigs, cardboard. Continue to build ‘sandwiches’ until the bin is full. Squashing the materials may help too - I place a slab on the waste to compact it.