July 5, 2008

New Treat for Peat

For peat's sake - a Mumbles- based conservation group is planning to spread the word about composting this summer.

Coeden Fach, which means little tree in English, has won pounds1,600 of B&Q products to set up a peat-free compost scheme, after beating off stiff competition.

Peat is a traditional part of Wales's natural habitat, and is very effective at storing carbon. But thousands of tonnes of the stuff are dug up and used as a compost base.

Carolyn Sharpe, aka Witchhazel Wildwood, of Coeden Fach, says people can make decent compost from kitchen waste, leaf mulch, and a bit of straw, paper and lawnmower clippings.

"You mix it together in a container, or compost bin, and leave it for a couple of months," she said. "Peat is put in compost mixes mainly to retain moisture."

Her group will set up a community composting scheme at a temporary site in Lower Norton Allotments, and plans to run workshops at local events over the summer.

Coeden Fach sprang to life in February to establish a community tree nursery. Members hope to find a permanent one-acre base.

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