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Households are trying to be more ecologically conscious and recycle more than ever before. With a growing concern of mankind's effects on the planet we all want to minimise our impact.
Collectively we realise what an important part our green spaces and gardens have to play in this equation. The way we manage and maintain outside spaces have a huge impact on our environmental footprint.
Intensive maintenance regimes not only consume a lot of energy they pollute the environment. Not only that, highly maintained lawns, borders and hedges are negative for wildlife and biodiversity.
Consequently we are starting to see a whole movement with a horticultural focus on longer lawns and wilder gardens. This is a very positive trend but one which will require more sustainable management and recycling into the future.
In a natural ecosystem organic waste degrades in situ enriching the soil and providing multiple habitats for soil life. Therefore we have listed the top tools and equipment for recycling organic garden waste at home.
From garden clearance equipment to fertiliser formation to even food production we have it all here.
Below we have listed the top 18 tools and equipment for recycling organic garden waste at home!
Pitch forks are a long handled fork with long, curved prongs at the end. Unlike traditional garden forks which are meant for digging pitch forks are better for shifting lighter, less dense material.
A typical use for these historically is pilling and loading hay. What makes them perfect for garden recycling is their ability to move about awkward material easily.
Pitch forks help shift stringy and twiggy, organic matter like foliage with ease oxygenating it at the same time. This makes them perfect for compost making and garden clearance operations.
Landscaping rakes are much more robust than traditional rakes used in gardening. This makes them perfect for raking through rough and course materials gathering them for further processing.
Landscaping rakes are constructed with a timber shaft and metal head perfect for collecting heavy loads. These strong rakes are built to last for many years making them a sustainable option.
Leaf grabbers are an easy way to collect and move about leaves and other organic material. These are particularly useful during the fall when there are large amounts of leaves on the ground.
Their long handles and scissor grips mean these are perfect for loading bags or compost bins without the continuous need for bending.
Leaf vacuum shredder and blower
When attempting to clear and gather as much organic waste as possible this power tool is a must. Not only does this efficient garden vacuum and blower collect debris with ease it also shreds.
This means you can process a large quantity of material quickly and place it straight on the compost or lay it as mulch.
The main threat with collecting large amounts of garden waste is sharp thorns and spiky foliage. Also working with landscaping tools can lead to multiple cuts and scrapes.
Therefore it is always recommended to have the best hand protection possible. These chainmail gloves are not only comfortable but extremely resistant to thorns and cuts.
Some of the best tools for recycling organic garden waste are also very versatile. Garden shears are useful for a whole range of varying gardening activities.
These compact tools can be used to clear away surface vegetation as well as keeping hedges trim. They can also be used to trim down twiggy material into a more compostable size.
The great thing about loppers is they can cut woody material with a surprisingly large diameter. This makes them perfect for pruning small trees, coppicing and pollarding.
Loppers can be used to gradually cut down cumbersome branches into sticks to be processed further. Alternatively they can cut branches up into small pieces to be used as mulch.
Heavy duty chipper
If you find yourself in the position of needing to process larger grade garden waste look no further. This high power garden shredder can turn branches into wood chip quickly and efficiently. Wood chip has numerous uses as well as mulching plants, smoking food and even growing mushrooms.
Electric garden shredder
You may want the benefits of a garden shredder but require a more modest machine. In that case this electric shredder and chipper can handle more general garden waste.
It still has the ability to chip down thick sticks into mulch but with a finer texture. The chippings produced by this shredder are perfect for composting!
It is surprising just how much green waste can be generated from even a small green space. Even simply mowing a lawn can produce a large amount of clippings.
Consequently wheelbarrows are essential commodities for carting organic material where you need it. Wheelbarrows can also be used to mix green waste together for easier composting.
Wheelie bins are not the first item you may think of when recycling garden waste. However these robust, portable bins can be the perfect way to store and transport organic material. They can be particularly useful for depositing organic kitchen waste before it is transferred into the compost.
Green waste bags
Green waste bags are a very useful way to collect large amounts of springy, green material. Once collected and bagged they are easy to drag them to wherever you need them. These bags can be used again and again and become invaluable in green recycling projects.
If you ever end up with extensive overgrown areas brush cutters are the perfect clearance tool. These are pretty much the same as strimmer's but with robust, metal, cutting blades instead of a strimming cord.
These are capable of cutting through thick stems and clumps of vegetation. Brush cutters can also be used to process down green thickets into more compostable material.
Compost tumblers are probably the easiest and quickest way of recycling garden waste. These rotating composters allow you to turn the green waste without any physical lifting.
This helps to mix the up the particles keeping them evenly moist and oxygenated. The compostable material is easy to load and unload as your needs require.
Wire compost bins
Wire composters are not as sophisticated as compost tumblers but still make perfectly good compost. The good thing about wire bins is they are affordable and simple to set up.
This composter is more suited to composting over longer static periods. In the autumn these can be filled to the top with leaves and will provide the perfect mulch a year later.
Compost aerators are simple devices but remarkably effective at adding oxygen to the heap. Simply you push the blades deep down into the compost heap, and then apply force pulling backwards. The small blades hook into the green material pulling it up and aerating well in the process.
Mushroom grow kits
Believe it or not you can actually grow mushrooms of green waste such as straw, chips and composting material. Edible mushrooms like Chestnuts and Oysters can actually help to break down organic, green waste.
A strategy you can use is to buy a mushroom grow kit and spread the mycelium onto your waste. As long as the materials and conditions are ideal you will soon be enjoying your own edible delights.
Wormeries and worm farms are sometimes thought of as very specialist pursuits. However these ingenious systems can be the perfect way to recycle organic waste into rich fertiliser.
All you need is a wormery, some worms and some green waste to recycle. Everything you need can be found and purchased online including the worms themselves.
Why not check out the wormery starter kit below featured below.
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Paul Nicolaides has over 30 years of recreational gardening and 20 years of professional landscaping experience. He has worked for landscape contractors including design and build practices across London and the South East. In 2006 he qualified with a BA Hons degree and post graduate diploma in Landscape Architecture. In 2009 he founded Ecospaces an ecological landscaping practice which aims to improve social cohesion and reduce climate change through landscaping. In 2016 he founded Buckinghamshire Landscape Gardeners which designs and builds gardens across Buckinghamshire and the South East. This blog aims to provide easy problem solving information to its audience and encourage others to take up the joy of landscaping and gardening.