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Community Project Module

JCP-students became compost experts

By Dr Martina Jordaan

Posted on 16 May 2010

JCP-students learned to make compost heaps for their project at Phyllis Robertson Home

The students reported:

"While the thought of driving to Mamelodi can be daunting, we grabbed the opportunity to expand our knowledge. Since we are building a compost heap for the Phyllis Robertson Home, we visited the Jewish National Fund Walter Sisulu Environmental Centre to attend a compost workshop. We received a warm welcome from very friendly staff members and the workshop started immediately. Tina, who presented the workshop, showed us around there impressive garden and taught us about all the different plants that can be used in a compost heap. We learned that a compost heap has three layers. Firstly a yellow layer is placed, which consists of dry grass, straw and tree branches etc, which serves as a base. This layer provides carbon in the compost heap. The yellow layer is followed by a green layer of plants such as comfrey, tansy and any kitchen waste, which provides nitrogen to the compost heap. Next a red layer of manure is added. These layers are then repeated and each layer should be saturated with water. The compost heap should be kept in a square shape. After all the layers have been piled up, the heap must be covered in straw to keep the heat inside."

The students are now ready to start their project at Phyllis Robertson Home.

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