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Home composting and worm farming

Composting and worm farming are nature's way of recycling - they divert organic waste from going into landfill and help to reduce the amount of harmful gases that are released into the atmosphere.

As well as helping the environment, composting and worm farming can make your bin less smelly, and you can use composted materials on your garden to keep your soil healthy as the products produced make a great natural fertiliser.

Using compost in your garden is one of the best ways to put nutrients back into the soil. Rich soil increases yield, improves plant health and reduces the need for artificial fertilisers.

Choosing a system that works for you

It's important to choose a system that works for you and your household.

Compost bins

In compost bins, microscopic organisms turn kitchen and garden waste into decomposed organic matter known as compost. When used in the garden, compost provides soil with essential nutrients, breaks up heavy clay soils and helps sandy soils retain moisture.

Compost bins are a great option if you live in a house with a garden as they can take most food scraps, leaf-litter and garden prunings.

What to compost

You can compost:

  • coffee grounds and filters
  • leaves and flowers
  • fruit and vegetable scraps
  • bread crusts
  • pulp from juicers
  • crushed eggshells
  • grass trimmings
  • tea bags.

The most important thing to remember, is to ensure that you don't have too much of the one thing - the more variety of material you put in the compost, the better your end product will be.

Worm farms

Worm farms are a great way to turn your leftover kitchen scraps into a rich, natural fertiliser. Worms make structures called worm casts, and it is these casts that create the fertiliser. They can be placed straight onto your garden or mixed with water to make a liquid fertiliser for pot plants.

Worm farms are ideal if you live in an apartment with a balcony or small courtyard, as they are very compact and don't smell.

What do worms eat?

Worms will eat:

  • fruit and vegetable scraps
  • tea bags
  • cardboard (shredded and soaked)
  • paper
  • bread crusts
  • pulp from juicers
  • crushed eggshells
  • leaves.

However, worms don't like onion or citrus fruits and may actually escape the farm to get away from them.

Why compost?

Recycling organic materials has environmental and gardening benefits, such as:

  • reduced greenhouse gas emissions
  • improved soil quality
  • reduced waste going to landfill
  • improved water savings
  • saving money.

Learn how to become a composter or worm farmer at our free workshops

Council holds free home composting workshops twice a year, usually in March and November at the education workshop area of Moruya Transfer Station, to give you practical tips to start or improve your composting at home.

All participants receive a voucher for a free home composting kit that you can collect upon completion of the workshop. The kit includes a compost bin and kitchen bench top caddy to help you start your own composting at home.

In partnership with South Coast Colleges, Council also holds free worm farming workshops each year to give you helpful tips on how to start, or if you already have a worm farm at home, how to improve your existing farm. All participants will be eligible to pick up a free worm farm at the conclusion of the workshop for their household.

More information

Download your composting and worm farm guides, and read information about how to reduce food waste:

We can help you

Council staff are available to come and talk to your school or community group about how to start composting food waste on site - it's a great way to reduce waste and help look after the environment.

Contact us and speak to our Waste Minimisation Officer to arrange a visit, or for more information about composting: