A homemade compost aerator is a simple, sustainable and very green trick to help speed up your composting using old toilet rolls. The old trusty toilet roll, there are so many things one can do with them in addition to finding their way into the recycling bin!
We have previously used them as bio-degradable planters for our seedlings or brown mulch for our wormery to name a couple of great uses. Though our dog has really found a love for left over toilet rolls, she fetches them from the bathroom and brings them to us and sits down, asking for permission before chewing it to pieces. Ever so cute!
UPDATE (04/07/13): Picture of the toilet roll terror added to the bottom of this post.
Scrimpers choice! Don’t have to spend a penny.
We came across a post a few months back about creating toilet roll aerators; now for the life of me I cannot find the site to be referenced here. If anyone else can provide the link, I will add it to this post.
The post highlighted the issues with getting plenty of air into the compost mix to aid the bacteria, to increase the speed in which the matter breaks down. Normally we would do our best to turn it over, but it can be quite difficult to do at times, unless you have a rotating composter tumbler or a Dolmen Compost Mixer and Aerator. But as we are trying to be frugal scrimpers, keeping costs low and making the most of what you have, we thought this is worth a try.
The author pointed out the benefits of creating small air pockets within your compost and that they could be created by folding in the ends of your old toilet rolls and chucking them onto the heap and covering.
Easy peasy homemade compost aerators
Without trying to waffle too much, in a couple of simple quick and easy steps we created our first compost aerator tool:
- Fold in the top inch of both sides of one end of the toilet roll
- Then fold in the two flaps to partially close the end of the tube to create a little structure.
- Do the same to the other end
- Voila, done!
- Throw them into your compost bin and gently mix a little compost on top.
They will eventually get crushed (obviously), but they should continue to act as small air pockets until they rot away. I believe the idea is to continually keep adding them as you add more matter to break down.
Have you any results to share with your compost aerator?
Despite our compost looking good on our last bin raid, we have only been doing this for a couple of months, so we have nothing conclusive to add yet. Though each time we have a spare toilet roll, we have been adding them into our compost bin and on occasion yes we have been giving one to our dog to chew lol.
Has anyone any experience with this trick?
We are interested to find out how effective this trick is for anyone else’s compost breakdown or if they are any other great composting ideas.
UPDATE: Toilet Roll Terror – Asking for permission to chew
A couple of days after I posted this, we were sat outside in the sunshine and she came up, sat infront of Sherrie carefully holding her precious find. Then she will lift her paw ever so gently to ask if she can have it. I could not resist adding this cute little pic.