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What to do with my compost now?

CraighBCraighB Posts: 752
Hi all, I've recently started a compost pile in a compost bin and I have to say it's cooking really nicely! It's hot in the middle so I assume it's working. My question is this... After the compost has finished (hopefully in a few months being as its hot compost) and I leave it to cure for a few weeks... What do I do then? Do I just leave it in the bin until next spring or do I apply it to the garden now and then start another batch? Cheers guys, Craigh


  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353

    Once it's ready - use it!  image

    and start again  of course ! image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • CraighBCraighB Posts: 752
    Ah ok I will do image I didn't know as people say apply compost in spring but that's good to know I can use it straight the way image
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353

    You can keep it till spring if you wish Craigh - but if you're producing plenty, there's no reason why you can't use it any time. Spring is the norm simply because it's great as a mulch to suppress emerging weeds  image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • I've been interested in the answers to craighs home-made compost just used as a mulch/soil conditioner or can it be used on its own in pots or does it have to be mixed with other stuff first?image

  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 4,501

    Like most things, it all depends! 

    Homemade compost will vary in its nutritional value, bu it will usually be higher than most bought composts. As some soil always gets in on the roots of weeds, the soil content will affect how light or otherwise it is. 

    I use my compost sometimes on its own for containers for shrubs or large plants, but usually mix in some multi- purpose to lighten it a little, as my soil is clay based loam (where it isn't just clay!). It wouldn't be suitable for seed trays, as some seedlings need low levels of nutrients. As a mulch it gradually improves all your garden soil, by adding organic matter and nutrients and within reason the quality is less important. Some small pieces of twig, or strawy bits matter much less if it isn't meant for seeds.

  • paulk2paulk2 Posts: 184

    As I only have a smallish garden, I only have room for one compost bin. What works well for me is when the compost has finished breaking down, I put all of the contents from the bin into a few used large poly bags to use at a later stage when I need it (usually incorporating some into planting holes or mulching) and then start the bin again, adding a couple of shovel fulls of the totally broken down material and anything else that hasn't broken down.

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,739

    the trouble is the word  "compost" !

    Garden compost ,to me , is a soil conditioner. Potting compost is a growing medium.

    Certainly well rotted and sieved garden compost can be incorporated into a growing medium in pots and containers, I use mine solely in the garden. 

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