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Brown items in compost

Ok another probably stupid question....

I have what seems to be a never-ending supply of 'green' items for the compost bin; grass clippings, food waste (peelings, apple cores, etc).  I struggle with the browns.  Ok, I almost fund Amazon single handedly and receive a mountain of cardboard that I know would be perfect, but I really don't have the time or inclination to hand shred (or cut with scissors) into tiny pieces to add to the pile.

I'm sure there's an easier way that having to buy an industrial shredder - what do you put in for browns if you don't have a shredder? Or a I just being lazy and do I need to set aside a few hours a day cutting these boxes into tiny pieces?



  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,632

    I don't tear boxes into little bits, just rip it up a bit and stuff it in the compost bin.
    It soon takes up moisture and breaks up in no time.
    I put a few bits of cardboard in each time I add some green.

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 27,606

    I just lay in on top in a single layer and find it rots down a treat.( I know MD says it doesn't rot down and should be sent to the council tip, but he's wrong) I managed all our house moving boxes in a single season.

    When you add it, just water it with a watering can. If you can do it just before you cut your grass, all the better.

    don't forget newspapers and junk mail.

    Last edited: 15 May 2016 09:52:18

  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Third rock from the sunPosts: 31,109

    Hi Andy. If you water the sheets of cardboard before putting them into tne compost bin they will soak it all up and then it is really easy to rip them up into smaller pieces.

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • NatbatNatbat Posts: 62

    Toilet rolls, tea bags, coffee filters, kitchen paper towel, egg boxes make up some of mine. I get a lot of sawdust from the hamsters too.

    Anything brown paper wise or cardboard gets ripped into A5 size and scrunched, soaked if possible and chucked in. It always breaks down.

  • Andy LeedsAndy Leeds Posts: 516

    Ah A5 size, nice.  Seems I've been thinking I needed to tear them into tiny pieces for some reason :-)

    Looks like I'll be adding a fair bit today then.

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  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 6,127

    Autumn leaves can be gathered and stored in dumpy bags or brown bin liners & kept moist so they start to rot down. About 6 months later (as grass cutting season comes into it's own) you can start mixing the leaves into the grass cuttings.

    I also add shredded paper from the office.

    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • Fishy65Fishy65 Posts: 2,253

    So old newspapers are ok then? Even the Daily Mail?

  • Stevo4Stevo4 Posts: 109

    Toilet rolls? image I always flush mineimage

  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Third rock from the sunPosts: 31,109

    I also add the contents of the Dyson after hoovering - can you mention two brands in one sentence????

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
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