Eggs shells for organic compostingPosted on: 28 May 2015 by Editor at Large
Don't throw away egg shells once you've cooked, they are ideal for composting and could be nourishing your plants.
Giving Easter eggs may be fun but with around 10,000 tonnes of packaging due to be discarded in Britain this Easter, the eco-aware may want to think twice about what they throw away.
A sustainable and creative solution for this year's inevitable Easter waste, the equivalent weight of 1,500 London buses, is to compost it. Garden Organic, the UK's leading organic growing charity, suggests that even small steps like throwing cardboard in the compost heap rather than the bin can make an enormous difference.
Jane Griffiths from Garden Organic says, "Many people don't realise that the foil, plastic and card that their Easter eggs come in can all be put to good use. We would urge people to consider recycling the foil and plastic packaging and putting the cardboard in the compost bin.
"People using the Easter break to mow their lawns might be interested to know that their Easter egg boxes can be added to grass cuttings and other garden waste to give their compost heap the correct mix."
Everyone can make great compost from mixing kitchen waste such as veg peelings with pieces of cardboard and you don't even have to be a keen gardener to put it to good use, home-made compost can be used to simply perk up houseplants and help flowers or salad crops grow in window boxes.
You can also add any eggshells left over from Easter egg painting to your garden, as long as you used non-toxic dyes. Eggshells are rich in calcium which helps plant growth, especially good for your soil if it's acidic and needs liming. They also contain small amounts of the nutrients nitrogen and phosphoric acid. Their nutrients are particularly good for helping prevent blossom end rot in tomatoes.
Rinse the shells first to get rid of any egg membrane inside, then leave to dry. Crush them into pieces before adding to your compost heap or soil.
You can also place eggshells around plants such as tomatoes, peppers, broccoli or cabbage to keep slugs, snails and cutworms at bay, and across newly planted seeds to deter birds.
Incredibly 90% of waste sent to landfill is recoverable, meaning it could be recycled, composted or used to generate energy. "Landfill sites are rapidly filling up unnecessarily and it is really important that people start thinking now of other ways to deal with their waste," says Jane.
Garden Organic Ryton, the Warwickshire home of the charity, offers a composting demonstration area, which provides valuable tips on alternative ways to dispose of waste. The charity also runs a Master Composter scheme to help take the home composting message out into the community.
More information on composting and Garden Organic: www.gardenorganic.org.uk
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