Composting is nature’s way of recycling. It’s the magical transformation of your garden and kitchen waste into nutritious food for your plants. By feeding your soil with compost, you’ll feed your whole garden.

Wastebusters delivers the Dr Compost home-composting programme in Queenstown and Wanaka under contract to Queenstown Lakes District Council. We normally run the workshops during spring and autumn.

Check the Dr Compost Facebook page to see if there are any veggie growing our composting workshops scheduled soon.

Dr Compost can also solve any composting dilemmas for Queenstown Lakes residents, and give them personalised advice to get their composting system humming. Email him your questions to:

There’s a composting system to suit everyone, it’s just a matter of finding the right one to suit your household and knowing how to keep it happy. Here’s a rundown of the different systems to get you started.

  • Bokashi buckets – easy, indoor, painless and odourless. Suits bach owners, busy people, and those who don’t like trekking to the compost heap every day with their food scraps. You’ll need a garden to dig it into or a friendly neighbour who is keen to dig it into their garden. The system adds masses of fertility to your garden and attracts worms once the fermented food waste is dug in.
  • Worm farms – worms need more looking after than your average composting system (but less than your average pet). Their population can grow to deal with all your kitchen waste, but you need to be prepared to look after them a bit. A fun and educational system to enjoy with kids. The best bonus is that worms create fabulous side-products to boost your garden (vermicast and worm tea).
  • Hot composting – the classic composting system. You’ll need a copious supply of greens/nitrogen (food waste, plants) and browns/cardboard (straw, leaves, cardboard) to layer up at the same time. Hot composting works best for a bigger garden and for those with a ready supply of both green and brown materials. The end product is an amazing soil conditioner and natural fertiliser, which also adds to the moisture-holding capacity of the soil.
  • Cold composting – works on the same principle as hot composting, but without the pressure of needing enough ingredients to build a large heap on the same day. Just layer up your greens and browns as they come to hand, and wait. The process takes longer than hot composting but works well if you’re not in a hurry.
  • Chickens – a commitment, but a lot of joy too. Give them food scraps and they’ll give you eggs.