What kinds of material should I compost?

  • You need a proper mix of “greens” (nitrogen rich material) and “browns “(carbon rich material). There is no perfect blend, but you want a moist material that is the consistency of a damp sponge.
  • Compared to brown materials, green compost materials are much higher in nitrogen. Nitrogen is an important element in amino acids and proteins and is a vital protein source for the compost microbes, helping to speed up the process of decomposition. Best “greens” include:
  • Vegetable peelings
  • Grass clippings
  • Fresh manure (poultry, cows, sheep, horses)
  • Coffee grounds
  • Seaweed
  • Plants and plant cuttings
  • It is also important to have a good mix of brown materials. Brown materials such as leaves, straw, hay and sawdust are high in carbon and are a source of energy for the compost microbes. Best “browns” include:


  • Leaves
  • Hay
  • Straw
  • Paper and cardboard
  • Egg shells
  • Tea bags
  • Sawdust
  • Wood ashes

What kinds of material should I NOT compost?

You should NOT try to compost the following materials:

  • Chemically treated wood products
  • Diseased plants
  • Human waste
  • Meat, bones, fatty foods waste
  • Pernicious weeds
  • Pet waste