DO’s and DON’Ts for your compost bin

Anneka Ehrenberg

You have a vegetable garden or are planning to have one? If there is one thing gardens love, it is compost!

Follow our list of DO’s and DON’Ts to create a happy, odour free compost bin!


  • Maintain an equal percentage of green waste and brown waste within your bin – green waste is made up of food scraps, brown waste relates to paper, straw and cardboard.
  • Ensure to load your compost bin with fruit and
    vegetable scraps, vegetable oil, leaves and pruning from your garden, tea bags, toilet rolls, coffee grounds, crushed eggshells, pet hair, flowers, your hair, cardboard and paper.
  • Keep your compost aerated, if you have a standard bin ensure you stir it with a stick once a week and if you have a tumbling bin, give it a whirl at least once a week.
  • Bury food scraps within the brown layers as this will avoid attracting rodents.
  • Place your bin in a shaded and well-drained area – away from too much sunlight.
  • Keep all green material covered with a brown material layer, this will mask any smells and cut down on fly exposure.
  • Soak straw and cardboard before adding it to your compost bin (don’t saturate it), this will keep your bin moist and speed up the breakdown process.
  • You will know when you’re able to use your compost on your vegetable patch as it will begin to look like soil and emit earthy smells.



  • Avoid filling your bin with animal waste, fish, bones, coated cardboard, glossy magazines, weeds that have seeds, fat, metal, diseased plants, or treated timber.
  • Avoid composting excessive amounts of dairy and meat waste as this could attract pests.
  • Do not place garlic, onion or citrus scraps into your bin as this can repel the necessary earthworms.
  • Avoid chemicals at all costs.


Sources composting/ composting-4858630

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The Griffith University Social Impact Projects address five significant social justice issues faced by vulnerable communities. Expanding on the work done by Project Safe Space, and Project Open Doors, the Griffith University Social Impact Projects bring Community Partners, students and the University together to work collaboratively in the innovative solution design sprints. Initially designed to address Mental Health and Wellbeing of Griffith students, we soon realised this was a much larger issue intersecting across a number of social justice issues for students and the wider community. The Social Impact Projects aim to contribute in some small way to improving these social issues.