Composting and organic waste
Composting at home is important because:
- Approximately 50% of most people’s waste is organic and compostable.
- Composting is good for the environment because it prevents organic waste (food scraps and garden waste) to end up in landfill, where they would break down and releases methane, a strong greenhouse gas.
- Composting your organic waste in a compost bin will create a free rich fertiliser that you can use to nourish your garden.
Residents can purchase a compost bin for their home through Council.
Compost bins are available at wholesale prices in two sizes:
- 220L: $39
- 400L: $49
To order a bin, simply call the Customer Service team on 5220 7111 or download the form below.
Purchased bins can be organised to be collected from either of Council's Customer Service Centres: 2 Pope Street, Bannockburn or 19 Heales Street, Smythesdale.
If you need help setting up your new compost bin, watch the video below.
Further useful information can be found here.
However it is important to remember that the best food waste is the one that we don’t produce in the first place. For further information on reducing your food waste visit: www.lovefoodhatewaste.vic.gov.au
What can I add to my compost?
- Vegetable and food scraps
- Coffee grounds
- Fallen leaves
- Tea leaves and bags
- Vacuum cleaner dust
- Dead flowers
- Soft stemmed plants
- Torn newspaper
- Animal and human hair
- Egg shells
- Grass Cuttings
- Wood fire ash
Do not add the following to your compost
- Meat and dairy products
- Metals, plastics, glass
- Diseased plants
- Large branches
- Citrus fruit peels
- Animal fat, bones, droppings from meat eating animals (cats or dogs)
- Weeds that have seeds or underground stems
- Bread, cake or other grain products that may attract mice
Precautions when handling compost and soil
- Wash your hands after handling compost or soil materials
- Protect broken skin by wearing gloves
- Avoid confined spaces for handling compost or soil materials
- Keep compost moist to prevent the spores or bacteria in compost from becoming airborne
Vermiculture uses worms to break down food scraps. You can’t use ordinary earthworms as the conditions are too rich. Special earthworms, such as Red, Tiger, Indian Blues and Red Wrigglers thrive in rich and moist conditions of a worm farm.
See the Worm Farm fact sheet located at www.resourcesmart.vic.gov.au for more information
Chickens are a wonderful way of disposing of household scraps, they are easy and inexpensive to have at your home.
They also create fantastic fertiliser for your garden, and are used for chemical free bug and weed control.
They provide fresh eggs which are great tasting and highly nutritious!
Ballarat Permaculture Club provides assistance similar to “Back Yard Blitz” – help with composting, construction for chook sheds, garden beds and other various structure, etc.