Home composting

What are the benefits of home composting?

By making your own compost you can reduce Lancashire’s rubbish, help reduce global warming and produce a great product to add to your soil. Composting provides a soil improver for the garden, reduces landfill, and reduces the amount of rubbish you put into your wheelie bin for collection.  Other reasons are given on the following websites:

http://www.lancashire.gov.uk/corporate/faqbuilder/view.asp?siteid=3183 and http://www.lancashire.gov.uk/environment/waste/index.asp

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Where should I put my compost bin?

On bare soil or grass so that worms and other insects can get in and moisture can drain out.  Ideally it should be placed in partially sunny spot and not placed on concrete or paved areas.

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How do I know when my compost is ready for use?

It could take up to a year to produce some compost.  However, the process slows down when the weather is cooler.  A good indicator is that the compost will smell sweet and should be crumbly.

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Who do I contact for advice on composting?

You can contact the Composting Helpline on 0845 0500 110 or the Waste Helpline on 0845 0500 957 – both are staffed between 9am and 5pm.

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What information or fact sheets are available?

Various fact sheets are available on the following website:


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What should I do when my compost bin is full?

If the compost at the bottom of the bin is ready this can be removed and added to the garden providing more room within the bin.  Alternatively if the compost is not yet ready, you can try starting a second bin whilst waiting for the finished compost from the first bin.

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Will composting encourage more flies?

Securely fastening the lid to your compost bin and not adding meat or cooked food will discourage flies’ in the bin.  Very small fruit flies, are harmless but can be easily dealt with, when adding fresh material to the bin add a layer of paper/cardboard over the top to stop access to the new material. 

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What can I put in my compost bin?

Fruit and vegetable peelings and garden waste but avoid cooked food and meat.  For new composters, a booklet is delivered with the compost bin, which explains all you need to know.

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Do you supply Water butts?

Lancashire county Council do not provide free or subsidised water butts.  Water butts can be purchased from most hardware stores and gardening centres.


United Utilities also sell water butts, call 0845 6585588 or log on to www.evengreener.com.  This information should not be viewed as an endorsement of any product, company or service.

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I have ants in my compost bin?

This may be a sign that your compost bin is too dry, trying adding more green materials that are wet and slimy such as fruit and vegetable peelings, or just add water to your bin.  Remember that your bin should be as damp as a wrung sponge.

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I have slugs in my bin?

Slugs are harmless in your bin, and are part of the natural feeding process.  When adding finished compost to your garden, remove slugs to prevent them feeding on your plants.

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I have woodlice in my bin?

Woodlice are harmless and provide an essential role in breaking down woody and dry and fibrous materials.  Do not remove them from your compost bin.

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