Sunday, June 1, 2014

Recycle: its nature`s course

I learnt about recycling after coming to Europe. I was doing it while we were living in Gemany. Here they recycle almost everything, from paper to carton to glass and the kitchen waste. I was so happy to see what kind of system they have managed to establish here and how important it is for us to do it as well for our kids, grand kids, great grand kids and so on because this is the only earth we know we have.

If we talk about back home, then we also recycle almost everything except the kitchen waste, although being the largest Vegetarian country in the world we should be doing it the most. But anyways, we still do a lot, like we sell paper to the Paperwala पेपर वाला (Paper vendor) and even get some money from him, we sell glass and iron to the Ironwala लोहा लक्क्ड़ वाला (Iron and glass vendor) and the old clothes I remember were used to be exchanged for new Steel utensils. I remember my Grandma was very fierce in dealing with those dealers. They always used to come in the afternoons when it was siesta time and the Men of the house used to be away. It was always so much fun for me to see that. So those people use to take old clothes in exchange for utensils etc. and then the old sarees were/are re sold again on the streets for car cleaning and are still bought by the less privileged people for personal use.

Here is a cute little and very simple diagram I found on a website called as

Only the kitchen waste is the thing which is not entirely taken care of. Actually some of it is also given by the people to the cows on the street, I thing that's pretty neat too. But not everyone is doing it. After seeing how these Swiss people are recycling there kitchen waste I along with a friend of mine (Monika) decided to show that simple way of recycling to the people back home. But until now we were not successful in doing that. Here if you live in a house with a Garden then you can have your very own Compost space but if you live in an Apartment like I do, then the system is that every Friday morning the truck comes and picks up the biodegradable waste which is then taken to the compost plant to be made in Compost. So now I write a post on the blog, it is the simplest thing to do and very rewarding as well.

If you have a small garden then its really easy-peasy for you to turn your biodegradable waste into compost. The biodegradable waste (kitchen waste, peels of fruits and vegetables, wasted food, garden leaves, dried leaves, straw, wood chips, egg shells, cardboard pieces, tea bags, tee leaves) decomposes itself with the help of tiny microbes and worms. The microbes work best on green and brown food so we should have a good combination of those two. 

You can get a big container or even a small water tank (like sintex), or some people even make spaces with wood or mesh wire too. If you are taking a big plastic container then chop off the bottom of the tank and cut a door too. It should be in contact with the ground. On the top there is anyway a lid, which can be left open most of the times other then while raining. 

Here is the information along with the diagram on how to compost. This shows how to compost in smaller spaces, like if you live in an apartment but the process is the same be it a small space or a big space(taken from the Städtgartenrei Basel Kompostberatung)

Compost on the balcony in case of shortage of space.

The method is always the same :

Breaking – Mixing – Keep humid – Cover.

1. Preparation of the jar/bin

At the bottom of the Bucket or Bin you drill 20 holes and on the sides 2 rows of them.
Now you take a drip mat, put 2 latches on it and the jar/bin thereon.

2. Set up of the compost

Concept of compost is always the same, in this description it’s adapted to the size. First of all you make a level with little branches (size of a small pencil). Thereon you put a level with leaves. If you don’t have leaves, you may also use cardboard ripped into little pieces (conduced to circulation of air). Last level is straw, shredded material from trees and bushes.

Now you can start. You put the well crushed kitchen waste and material from the garden into the bin and mix it well. As needed you may sprinkle the content with water from a watering can (according to the moisture content of the material, melons and tomatoes e.g. are very aqueous).



Caution! If the content of the bin is too wet it will rot and stink, if it is too dry the microorganisms could not work and you get no compost.

The moisture of a squeezed sponge is the correct one.

Put every week a handful of microbes into your compost. After every filling with kitchen waste you add the same amount of dried waste and mix it well (Tear coffee filter and teabags and crash eggshells.

So, that is about it. Give it a try. Your Compost should be ready in the period of 6-8 weeks. You can use it for your garden, indoor and outdoor plants. You will reduce your garbage by more then 75% and doing a great deed as well.