Forum home Problem solving


I've recently moved in to a bungalow and I have 3 compost bins, they are full , I don't know what is in there.

please can you advise me what to do with them as I have never had these in my garden.

Many thanks

Diane Rowsell 


  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,967

    If it looks nice, feels nice and smells nice, put it on your garden

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • It's got lots of flies coming out of it and it stinks. 

    Do I have to do anything to the mixture that's in there?

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,967

    depends on what's in there - what do you reckon it is?
    if it's a wet stinking sludge then get shot of it somehow even on a part of the garden that;s not important and not close to you bungalow obviously
    if they are little flies then prob nothing to worry about, if there are swarms of bluebottles, that;s a different matter

    a pic might help

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • CloggieCloggie Posts: 1,457

    What kind of wrapper do they have on them?  Are they the black, plastic dalek type or bays?

    You need to turn them to introduce oxygen which activates bacteria and sets them off rotting.  If they are the dalek type then the easiest way to do this is to take the whole bin off and stand it next to the pile of stuff then fork the pile into the empty bin.  Shake it up as you do this.  If there are dry bits, wet them off.  If there are slimey, sticky bits, introduce some cardboard/shredded newspaper/shredded woody garden cuttings to help break it up and keep air in there.

    As you do this, if you're lucky, you'll find black, crumbly stuff at the bottom that smells earthy (like soil).  This is your usable stuff.

    The stinky, fly attracting stuff is not yet ready so leave it in the bin and pile more stuff on top of it.

    Do this, let us know how you get on and if you're still keen to continue being a composter then we'll tell you what to do next.

    Hope this helps and encourages you.  I'd have loved to have inherited 3 compost bins. I think you're lucky.

  • StevedaylillyStevedaylilly Posts: 1,087

    I would empty the content out of the bins and check the level of decomposition.Garden compost is mainly made up of green and brown waste is; green plant waste and brown woody waste. Obviously, kitchen waste is also incorporated but getting the right balance between green, brown and kitchen is important. 

    Once you have emptied the bins and sorted what levels of compost you have then remix the contents as this will speed up the compost process and add some water to the mix Ensure that your compost bins are situated in a place so they get at least 6 hours of sun so they get heated up. I would periodically remix the contents of the bins to ensue that the contents are evenly mixed 

  • Thanks, I will try that. I have brought some special compost mixer from the garden centre, so I'm hoping this will work.


Sign In or Register to comment.