Composting shredded paper at Barnmead Allotments

Did you know shredded paper is a valuable material for composting?

Paper is a great source of carbon and helps soil retain water, as well as decomposing into organic composition for the soil and keeping the weeds out. It’s particularly popular among Vermicomposters due to the worms searching it out above other materials in the compost bin.

Knowing the benefits of adding paper to compost bins (in moderation), members of our team enjoyed a walk to Barnmead Allotments to distribute three large bags of shredded paper, accumulated from our project archiving and office clear out. Nothing quite like getting stuck in, quite literally, with our local community.

Signage at Barnmead Allotments showing the do's and dont's of composting

If you’re unsure, here’s a quick list of what you can put in your compost:

  • Grass cuttings and dead leaves,
  • Fruit and vegetable scraps and peel,
  • Plain cardboard (not glossy cereal boxes),
  • Old cut flowers and bedding plants,
  • Prunings and dead plants,
  • Coffee grounds,
  • Tea bags (check they don’t contain plastic first!),
  • Pet droppings from any healthy veg-eating pets, including gerbils, rabbits, hamsters and birds, along with any bedding made from natural material or newspaper,
  • Eggshells (help to keep the heap from smelling),
  • Newspapers.

And just as a reminder, do not compost cooked food, coal and coke ash, meat and fish, bones, cat litter, dog or human waste, disposable nappies, glossy paper, weeds, woody stems, or diseased plants.

Visit the London Wildlife Trust to learn more about how to compost your waste.