Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live with my family in rural Herefordshire. We have nearly four acres of garden and woodland, all managed organically and to Permaculture principles, which we share with Chickens, Cats and assorted wildlife. We also grow a lot of our own food, run courses in all sorts of things and make a lot of compost!

I am a Master Composter and have spent more than a decade as a volunteer Community Compost adviser with Garden Organic and my local Council.
I'm a self employed Environmental Educator so I run workshops and events where I talk about compost, veg growing, chicken keeping, cooking, preserving and sustainable living. I also run crafts workshops and Forest School/outdoor play sessions in our wood.

We try to live a more self sufficient lifestyle here, as best we can, while still having a comfortable life and lots of fun.

To learn more about us click on the About Compostwoman tab and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!

Tuesday 27 February 2007

Organic gardening

I am a long term subscriber to Organic Gardening Magazine and on its website this month is a really good item about organic gardening.

So I am going to reproduce it here and if you want to know more go to


Why go organic/

10 reasons to go organic

1. It’s healthier for the soil
Your soil will become healthier. A rich, healthy soil is the answer to almost everything! Artificial fertilisers damage the soil, weaken your plants and pollute the water supply.

2. It’s magic!
You'll discover the magic of composting. Compost is a rich source of food and nutrients for the soil, and is created by recycling waste organic material (garden waste, food waste, paper and cardboard), so it is therefore a 'double positive'.

3. It’s safe
You'll never have to worry again about all those poisons lurking in the garden shed or under the kitchen sink, that your children and pets just might get hold of.

4. It’s healthier for you and your family
You can be absolutely confident that all the delicious food you grow and bring fresh from your garden to your kitchen doesn't contain any potentially damaging pesticide residues (and hasn't been transported halfway round the world!).

5. It’s satisfying
You'll begin to adopt a more holistic way of thinking and looking, discovering the ways in which everything is connected and interacts, and being part of this connectedness can become an enormous source of satisfaction.

6. It’s wildlife-friendly
Wildlife will regard your garden as a haven from the ravages of intensive farming. Birds, bees and butterflies, hedgehogs and worms will all become your friends and contribute to the health and well being of your garden.

7. It’s eco-friendly
You will realise that your garden is part of a much wider environment and that by your eco-friendly practices you can make a contribution to the sustainability of the planet. You'll find yourself looking for new ways to work with nature rather than constantly feeling you're fighting against it.

8. It’s good for biodiversity
Organic gardeners delight in the rich diversity of the natural world. Instead of just growing the same half a dozen varieties every year, you'll discover there are a thousand different types of tomato or lettuce or potato or tulip or whatever takes your fancy. You can save your own seed of rare or unusual plants and even, if the idea appeals, become a guardian of a particular variety, thus preserving it for future generations.

9. It's therapeutic
Organic gardening is about balance and harmony. Gardening can become an enormously therapeutic activity when you discover ways of relieving yourself of the struggle to 'keep everything down'. Plants want to grow! It's what they do. The organic gardener is simply looking for ways to co-operate with and support them.

10. It’s supportive
You'll find you belong to a worldwide family of friendly, like-minded, enthusiastic, knowledgeable people, who will be only too happy to share their experience of gardening and growing, and enrich yours.

If you're new to the idea of gardening organically, and in the past you've been used to using weedkiller and pesticides and artificial fertilisers, you may think there's a mountain to climb to become organic.

Although gardening organically is really an attitude of mind, you can go a step at a time; no body's going to send the organic police round!

The organic attitude is about 'live and let live' (except, perhaps, when it comes to slugs and weeds!). And there are simple, easy steps you can take to move towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly way of working.

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