05 Aug 2020
garden waste

When garden waste is taken away from your home it is recycled into a nutrient rich soil conditioner. This newly formed compound has a wide range of uses, such as for agriculture, land reclamation and as an ingredient in some multipurpose composts you can buy at a garden centre.

Nearly all garden waste can be recycled including bark, flowers, grass and hedge cuttings, leaves, plants, small branches, twigs and weeds. If you are unable to compost at home and you have filled your council recycling bin (if one is provided), we offer a skip bag service where we drop off and collect a bag for you to fill with garden waste. If your garden project is big, you may need to hire a skip or look at using a grab hire service.

 

Did you know

  • Garden waste makes up 14% of the average household bin.
  • Around 94% of local councils in the UK collect garden waste.
  • Adding compost to soil increases the nutrients and improves the soil’s structure to help plants grow.

 

What happens to garden waste when it is recycled?

When the garden waste arrives at the composting site any material that is not compostable is removed, the remaining waste is then shredded and laid out in a long pile to decompose, usually in the open air.

The process at a composting site is similar to that which takes place in a home compost bin, but is actively managed to speed up the process. However, due to the amount of material the temperature reached is a lot higher than in a normal household compost bin. Temperature can reach up to 60°C. This higher temperature means that the enzymes and bacteria are quickly put to work resulting in finished compost in just a few weeks.

The material is turned frequently to provide much needed oxygen to micro organisms that help decompose the material. High temperatures kill off any harmful microbes, weeds and plant diseases.

The final part of the process involves screening the compost to remove any remaining contaminants and to grade the material for various end uses. Any compost that is still oversized or hasn’t decomposed enough, can then be put back through the process until it has composted down sufficiently.

The whole process takes between 8 and 16 weeks, depending on the final use for the compost.

 

What is recycled garden waste used for?

  • Compost can be applied in a range of end uses, within full-scale agriculture, landscaping, gardens and brownfield sites.
  • It can be used as a soil improver, mulch, topsoil constituent, turf dressing, and growing medium constituent.