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Talkback: Composting waste

Excellent idea, but i was composting this year, adding all and sundry. The problem i then had was RATS.
I now only compost my garden waste.
Does anyone know how to compost without our little ratty being involved?


  • If you are adding meat fish dairy products
    to your heap that is probably the problem for what you can add visit
    But fruit and vegetable waste should be fine. Try putting a lid if you have not already. Also try to use your heap regularly because according to recycle now rats are shy and don't like disturbance
  • Sit your compost bin, round or square on a sheet of chicken wire and wrap it rounnd the bottom of the bin, that should stop ratty moving in. Mind you, I had a rat in my plastic bin all last winter who obligingly turned my compost every day and once she had moved out in the spring I had the best crumbly compost ever!
  • If you have a problem with rats it could be that you are adding meat bones or dairy. This will attract rats so only add fruit or vegetable waste. Tea bags are also ok. You should not have any problem with rats if you place that in. Also try putting a lid on your heap or putting chicken wire under the base.
  • Try composting using Bokashi which is essentially "good bacteria" or EM`s. You can safely treat all kitchen and food scraps then add it to a traditional compost heap or dig it in. It dramatically improves productivity and soil health. Some councils are subsidising bins and EM`s to encourage use. I have drastically cut the amount in my dustbin each week.
  • Rats can easily chew through chicken wire. (Unfortunately I know from first hand experience in the days when I kept chickens. You could try using diamond pattern galvanised plasterers' mesh-it is thick enough to deter rats. It is also inexpensive and easy to get hold of from most builder's merchants.
    I agree with Tea Lady, using Bokashi is a great way to compost. Apart from the Em-powered compost being wonderful for the soil, apparently the "pickled" kitchen scraps are unattractive to vermin. Hope this helps.
  • I'm another advocate for bokashi - it's great stuff: you can use it to compost ALL of your kitchen waste, the smell deters rodents from the compost heap (though to be fair, it'd probably deter just about anything - it does reek when you tip it out, though oddly not when it's pickling in its bucket) and it accelerates the composting of everything else in your heap. As extra bonuses, the liquid that you can draw off is a great plant food, and if you're composting all of your food waste, you don't end up with a smelly dustbin. is a great site for bokashi and composting information and products (I don't work for them, but I am a trained home composting advisor!)
  • I have started asking for the coffee
    grounds from the coffee m/cs in my
    local supermarket, they are very pleased to give them to me all i do is crumble them up and spread them all
    over the compost .I have read that they are
    good for keeping slugs/snails at bay
  • I take the output from my paper shredder to the bins on my plot - no pongs or leaks!
  • Before xmas I noticed a trail of egg shells and peelings coming from my compost bins. After noticing some chuckles coming from the neighbouring allotments I found out it was our allotments infamous badger who over the years had moved from allotment to allotment carrying out midnight raids on the plots. Is there anyway to discourage this local celebrity from my plot?
  • If you're looking to start composting your waste, Creative Garden Ideas stock a range of composter bins ,ideal for residential gardens and yards. Take a look at the site to view the full range.
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