During the colder months of the year the composting process will start to slow down or stop as the optimum temperature for composting to take place is between 32-60 degrees Celsius (90-140 degrees Fahrenheit) – that’s the temperature you’d measure in the centre of your composting pile.
You can easily check the temperature of your compost bin using a simple compost thermometer.
You can see that this bi-metal dial thermometer indicates the temperature as being warm, active and hot. Its long, stainless steel probe makes it easy to insert into a composting pile to measure the temperature close to the centre of the pile.
In order to continue to actively compost your garden and kitchen waste during the cooler months there are a few options, which we outline below.
The Green Johanna Hot Composter
The Green Johanna was developed in Sweden to provide a simple, easy to use compost system which you could use to safely compost all degradable kitchen waste all year round!
The well thought out, patented design of the Green Johanna makes it easy to site in your garden or at your allotment – its lovely green casing makes it blend nicely into its surroundings. It has been designed to make composting simple for everyone – no thought required! You can add both kitchen and garden waste to the bin – ideally it should be two parts food waste and one part garden waste. However, unusual for the Green Johanna, and unlike many compost bins, you can actually add meat, fish and bones to the bin to be turned into useable compost!
You can read all about the Green Johanna Hot Composter by reading the PDF attached below:
The round, cone shaped design of the Green Johanna means there are no cold corners and that as you add the waste it shouldn’t stick to the sides but rather will sink towards the centre helping to circulate air, oxygenating the compost. For effective composting, every time you add waste to the bin you should use the included mixing stick to blend the new waste into the old.
Using a Green Johanna Hot Composter should result in useable, nutrient rich compost in 4-6 months – which is easily removed using the two sliding doors near the base of the composter.
Aerobin Hot Composters
A newer design than the Green Johanna, these Aerobin Hot Composters were developed by an Australian company around 2006.
Available in three different sizes, 200, 400 and 600 litre, these Aerobins are ideal for any size household. Really easy to use simply drop in your kitchen or garden waste in through the wide top lid and then forget about it. Then simply keep adding waste in the top and once the composting process has taken place you’ll be able to harvest nutrient rich compost via the lower access doors – this typically takes between 3 to 6 months.
Unique to the Aerobin is its patented aeration lung which fits into the lower section of the aerobin. It is this self-aerating lung that means you don’t need to turn the waste as it decomposes (usually done in traditional compost bins to break up the waste, add air and speed up the composting process).
Another useful feature of these Aerobin Hot Composters is that they have a reservoir in their base where the liquid nutrients produced during the composting process will gather and can be easily removed via the built in tap at the base of the composter. This nutrient rich liquid is ideal for your garden – just ensure its diluted with water before you use it as it will be a very concentrated solution!