The Home Composter

How to Compost

Compost safely

Your compost ingredients

Empty your compost bin

To turn or not to turn?

How long to compost?

Worms & Wormeries

Composting in a Bag

Compost kitchen waste

Prickly prunings

Weeds and weeds

Too much grass

Leaves for Leafmould

Leaflets to download
Unwelcome Guests


Composting demonstrated


How to use spent compost and raw kitchen waste to grow healthy plants Ė even if you donít have a garden.
We often grow plants in containers and, by the end of autumn, nutrients in the compost have all been used up. It is possible to spread the compost round the garden, using it as soil conditioner or as a mulch, but you often don't have enough space in the garden for this and you need to get rid of the compost somehow. And some gardeners only have a courtyard, basement or balcony and no soil at all.
Sometimes it is possible, with the addition of some slow release fertiliser, to grow a non hungry crop like cut and come again salad in the old compost, but this simply delays the problem of how to dispose of it.

Composting in a BagSo mix raw kitchen scraps with spent commercial compost.
1. Use an empty plastic bag, possibly the one you bought your compost in.
2. Add in a layer of raw kitchen scraps, whatever you have available.
3. Sprinkle a small handful of compost activator over the fruit and vegetables. This introduces the bacteria that break down the scraps.
4. Cover this with a thick layer of spent commercial compost. Don't worry about rootballs. Break them up as best you can and the roots will gradually rot down with everything else.
5. Keep adding alternate layers of scraps and activator and compost till the bag is full.
6. Tie the bag firmly and leave for a few months in an out of the way, frost free place like a shed or sheltered corner.
7. This process adds nutrients and structure to the spent compost, so lets you use it again.
8. Mix this with new commercial or home made compost, 50:50.

The dry spent compost should soak up some of the surplus liquid from the kitchen scraps, so don't make holes in the bag for drainage. Apart from anything else, a leaky bag would make a nasty and smelly mess. Each addition of spent compost will absorb any remaining wetness.
Composting in a bag makes good use of kitchen scraps and spent commercial compost and saves you money.

Other seasonal tips you might find useful:
Recycle your Christmas decorations and use them in the garden.
Composting in the snow
Warm up your compost in the spring
Using your compost - make the most of your composting efforts
Use your compost in spring
Making your own compost mixes
Dealing with the Autumn Clearing - shredding and more
Is your compost slimy and smelly? - solve the problem.
Restarting your home compost bin in the spring.
Making the most of your compost bin in summer.
Composting in autumn means dealing with heaps of leaves and piles of prunings
Winter Composting - What to do when your home compost bin is working too slowly
Solve the problem of a cold, stuck compost bin.
Make your own liquid feeds from comfrey and nettles
Composting lawn clippings that have been treated with herbicide

Composting problem?
 Contact us if you would like us to answer your query. We'll try to give a helpful answer!

This page is sponsored by Scottish Borders Councilsbc logo

More information about recycling can be found on :
 Scottish Borders Council Reduce Reuse Recyclewaste aware logo

IAlso try Zero Waste Scotland