Composting Tips: what you can and can’t feed the worms

February 5, 2020
by HelloFresh Tips and Tricks

    In our quest to reduce as much waste in our lives as we can, we’re starting a worm farm. Check out our composting tips to keep your worms happy. 

    composting tips

    Why bother?

    Composting is a wonderful way of creating a self-sustaining cycle of food production. Even if you don’t grow a lot of your own food, you can reduce the waste from the stuff you do buy by making your own organic fertilizer from veggie and other kitchen scraps. This cuts down on your rubbish, and is great for your herb garden or other veggies!

    How to do it

    Composting is basically encouraging the decomposition of natural materials (Ooh! Glamorous!). What’s amazing about is that besides a garden fork and a tarp or compost bin, you don’t need to buy anything else.

    Start by layering your compost materials on a patch of earth – this will encourage natural organisms like worms to make the compost their home. Once you have worms and other creepy crawlies in the compost, the process of turning waste into beautiful, nutrient rich soil will be sped up.

    Add new materials as it becomes available (we like to keep a small bin in the kitchen and empty it in periodically). It’s a good idea to layer ‘green’ and ‘brown’ waste. Greens are veggie and fruit scraps, tea, coffee and egg shells. Small twigs, paper and wood chips are considered brown.

    Make sure to keep your compost heap covered, either in a bin or under a tarpaulin. The compost should be kept moist.

    composting tips


    Do Compost

    • Vegetable and fruit scraps (try to avoid seeds)
    • Egg shells
    • Coffee grounds and used paper filters
    • Tea leaves and tea bags
    • Fresh grass clippings
    • Nut shells
    • Hair
    • Old newspapers, paper towel and cardboard tubes

    Don’t Compost

    • Meat
    • Fish
    • Eggs (the shells only are OK)
    • Dairy products
    • Bones
    • Cat or dog waste (fur is OK)
    • Oily foods or grease

    Let us know your composting tips in the comments!

    Previous post
    What’s the deal with our family meals? What’s the deal with our family meals?
    Next post
    Pickled Pink: learn how to pickle anything! Pickled Pink: learn how to pickle anything!

    Related posts

    1 comment

    Dorothy Healy says:

    I left some of the wool liner on our verandah. The birds are now coming every day to take it to make nests for the spring. How cool is that?!

    Greer says:

    This made our day Dorothy! Very cool indeed.

    Diane says:

    I have left some out for a magpie pair because I saw them pulling out the coconut coir from my hanging baskets. Hope they make use of it.

    Juliette Russell says:

    Hi I have been using my wool liner as a garden weed mat it seems to work well and degrades at the same rate as the bark I put on top.

    Also want to comment that i am generally not happy about the recycling of Hello fresh packaging. Previously we were able to recycle the boxes and freezer packs. Happy to use the wool in the garden but there is only a limited amount you can use. I think you need to relook at your packaging.

    Diane Coghlan says:

    The wool insulation makes a great top layer on my worm farm. It retains plenty of moisture so keeps the worms damp and insulated from temperature extremes. I will be interested to see if, when it rots down, the worms use it.

    Lynne says:

    Another use for the wool insulation is to line wire hanging baskets.Works a treat.

    Stewart says:

    Love the comments about the wool liners.
    My experience with a kitchen compost bin is to ensure it is enamelled. This seems to prevent odours for some reason. We use a repurposed kitchen fat collector.

    Sonja says:

    I haven’t done it yet but I’m going to use the wool liner to put strawberry plants in – sure beats the black plastic I see commercial growers using!

    Deborah says:

    Did you know that other natural fibres can be composted? Cotton, wool, silk, bamboo etc. I always put my old cotton undies and hubby’s work shorts in the worm farm. All that is left behind are the synthetic parts i.e. elastic, stitching (fully intact), zips, buttons etc. I put them in whole, but if composting in a compost heap they should be cut into small pieces.

    Dale Chapple says:

    Worm farm is easy and saves a lot of rubbish. Creates good soil and liquid natural fertiliser.

    Very information post about composting! Yes I agree that “composting is great for the herb garden or other veggies”

    Kim says:

    I’m curious to know how long you expect it to take for the insulation to break down?

    Michael says:

    Hi Your Cool Pouch with corn icon You say these pouches are made from plant based and renewable materials. Can I place them in my worm farm, if so why aren’t they in the list above