Tool Box: Exercise your compost

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The Independent Online
COMPOST is good for the garden. It also makes ecological sense by using material that might otherwise be dumped in one of the landfill sites that currently cost the nation an estimated pounds 600m a year. But the problem faced by many gardeners, no matter how 'green' they may be, is that the traditional compost heap is inefficient. Raw materials accumulate faster than compost is produced. Another snag is that the typical compost heap is not a thing of beauty or joy.

All of which explains why I have just welcomed an aerobic compost tumbler from the Traditional Garden Supply Company. Made by Blackwall Products, and endorsed by local authorities from as far afield as Canada, it consists of a large drum (of recycled plastic) which stands about 4ft high when fixed to an easily assembled metal frame.

Listed at pounds 49.99, plus a pounds 2.75 delivery charge, the tumbler comes with a plastic bucket for kitchen waste, and clear, comprehensive instructions on how to make good compost. An organic activator is needed to start the process. The tumbler needs to be turned only once a day after the initial start-up.

The Traditional Garden Supply Company Ltd, Unit 12, Hewitts Industrial Estate, Elmbridge Road, Cranleigh, Surrey GU6 8LW (0483 273366).

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