Southern Waste Collectors Need Your Help!
With the enforced closure of the Southern Recycling Centre and the Bring Banks, the Commissioners across the South are calling on residents to help.
With the garden starting to grow after the winter and people having more time than usual to spend in their gardens, bins are starting to fill up with garden waste as lawns and shrubs are trimmed and beds weeded ready for the summer. Unfortunately, this busy time in the garden combined with closures of all the recycling areas is leading to an increase in the volume of waste that needs to be collected.
Residents across the south are being asked to help minimise waste at this difficult time for everyone and in particular are being asked to compost their garden waste wherever possible. Clerk to Arbory and Rushen Parish Commissioners, and himself a keen gardener, Phil Gawne, explained “composting is relatively easy to do and if you follow some basic guidance you get a valuable source of nutrients for your garden later in the year.”
There’s lots of information about composting available on the Isle of Man Government website if you search composting, and GardenOrganic.org.uk has tips on making a simple compost bin. For those who don’t have internet access though, the following summary should help.
- Put the bin somewhere convenient to use, on bare earth, in the sun or shade.
- Start with the top of your previous heap, some animal manure, or a layer of BROWNS. (Woody prunings, plant stems, twigs, autumn leaves, crumpled cardboard, egg boxes, wood shavings);
- Add compost materials as they come, trying to get equal amounts of BROWNS and GREENS (Fruit and vegetable remains, dead flowers, weeds, young hedge clippings, vegetable plant remains, grass clippings (not too many), crushed eggshells, teabags, coffee grounds). This will make your compost the right texture – not compacted or full of large air pockets.
- Each time you use your compost bin, before adding more, check that it’s not too wet or too dry. If it’s dry, water it. If it’s soggy, mix in some more BROWNS.
- If most of what you compost is GREENS, and you haven’t got enough garden BROWNS, then add in crumpled egg boxes, cardboard tubes and boxes torn up.
DO NOT COMPOST Meat, fish, cooked food, dairy products, roots of perennial weeds (like dandelions, ground elder, bindweed, couch, docks), any diseased plants, cat or dog faeces, plastic, glass and metal.
There’s lots of guidance on how to make a compost bin, but if you don’t have the materials and can’t get a bin you could temporarily keep a small compost heap in your garden. This will not be as effective as a bin, but gardeners over many centuries have used compost heaps’ or middens, to dispose of compostable materials. This would be a helpful short-term solution while the current restrictions are in place but would need to be carefully monitored as it could attract vermin if not protected.
Clerk to Port Erin Commissioners and the Southern Recycling Centre Jason Roberts added, “If you don’t have a compost bin but would like to purchase one, you can do so via card payment over the phone to Port Erin Commissioners’ Office on 832298. The compost bin is available at a subsidised cost of £42 and comes with its own base allowing you to easily place it in the best position in your garden. Due to the current COVID-19 lockdown, any orders we receive we will deliver the compost bin to you. We are keen to help you help us by not adding to the burden of our waste collection services so please don’t put garden waste in your bin unless you absolutely have to.”
Phil Gawne 834501
Jason Roberts 832298