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!

Thursday 1 July 2010

Energy from the Sun

A gratuitously self indulgent post, this one! Notice anything different about the woodstore roof, beyond the polytunnel? And can you see the solar thermal tubes on the house?
Thanks to these wonderful bits of kit, for the last week we have been generating around £7 worth of        electricity per day, (thank you, Feed in Tarrif) AND our bought in electricity usage has dropped to less      than 5 units per day. We have also had a seemingly endless supply of hot water! We have had to adjust our usage patterns but that's OK, I don't feel its a hardship to have to wait for the cooker to finish before running the washing machine. The electricity we sell back to the grid then goes off to be sold to other people , thus helping THEM to use truly renewable energy as well. 
Hurrah! *We* are generating clean, renewable energy, which gets sold to Good Energy! How cool is that idea!  Compost Mansions electrons!                                                                                                                                                   
Its wonderful, simply wonderful, to sit and use this computer now, using solar generated electricity, while     drinking a cup of tea made with solar generated electricity, while the washing machine is washing clothes using solar generated electricity and hot water heated by the sun, water which was pumped up from our borehole by, yep, you guessed it, solar generated electric. Between the PV's, the Solar Thermal tubes and   the  woodstore, I feel pretty damn  like the cat who got the cream, right  now !                                                                                            
Sorry, I'll take my grin somewhere else, shall I? ;-))


  1. I am green with envy. Now if we could only buy the house we want, I am hoping to invest in some myself!

    well done they look fab!

  2. That is quite awesome.

    I salute you, sadly under my own power as no solar here yet.

  3. Good for you! I wish that solar was a good option for me. The cost is prohibative and where I am at I cannot produce enough to meet my needs year round, and the three months I do, I won't produce enough to sell back. Still hoping that when I get out of debt I will be able to set money aside to put solar panels up anyways. Every little bit helps.

  4. I think your solar energy efforts are fantastic. Unfortunately, we live in a house that is shaded from late April until early September (in Sydney, Australia) and so can't employ solar. If we moved, however, we would want to have solar and a garden where we could grow veggies all year round.

    Good on you!


Hello! Thank you for reading my blog and for commenting. I try to reply as quickly as I can and I really appreciate your interest in my life and doings here in The Compost Bin.