Chestnuts Roasting - Composting at Christmas
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 | HOTBIN Composting
12 Days of HOTBIN Composting
If you don't get around to roasting your chestnuts on an open fire they can go in a HOTBIN. Like all nuts (conkers included), they are designed by nature to resist bacterial breakdown with the shell being the obvious barrier. To speed up the process of breakdown, break them up before they go into the HOTBIN and if using a hammer be careful and take sensible precautions. If roasting marshmallows instead, although we doubt there will be any left over these can also be composted.
If you have roasted them, the hot ash should not be added to the bin, however small cold quantities can be beneficial as charcoal is a natural form of carbon, too much however can turn compost strongly alkaline and could block airflow in the bin. Any leftover logs or wood that you don’t intend on burning can be added to a chipper and be made into your own bulking agent. Bulking agent is an essential part of hot composting that keeps waste aerated and bacteria happily breaking it down into delicious compost for your garden.
On the subject of temperature, if Jack Frost is nipping at your nose and you are feeling a little chilly (chillies can also go in) you could hug a HOTBIN for warmth with temperatures reaching 40-60°c. Whilst we are joking about the hugging if your HOTBIN does need a heat boost in the freezing winter use the kick start bottle for a boost.