Due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, as a Council we had to take the tough decision to suspend brown bin collections. You can find out more about bin collections on our website.

Although changes to waste collections are frustrating, a Darley Abbey resident has shared some tips to help you reuse garden waste without needing to put it in the brown bin or have a compost bin!

Jo got in touch to let us know what they did with some cuttings from a large shrub in their garden and how you can do it too!

“If you are doing a spring prune and normally put it in the brown bin, this time cut the trimmings to short lengths of around nine inches and put them back under the shrubs / hedges you cut them from. It takes a little extra time but can be therapeutic. It also benefits both plants, insects and small mammals by providing cover. Plus, you get a mulch to stop the earth drying out in the months to come.”

Jo’s other tips include:

  • Avoid over-pruning shrubs that are about to flower as the bees need these for early food source.
  • Don’t use prunings from diseased plants for mulch – such as roses with black spot or other signs of fungal disease.
  • Don’t be too quick to cut lawns. Raise the blades to 2-3 inches (50-75mm) and cut once every couple of weeks. Lawns will be healthier and cope with dry spells better as a result.
  • For access across the lawn to a shed for example, a shorter cut ‘pathway’ that’s just a mower-width. It can look very attractive!

Have you got any other top gardening tips? Let us know!

Geoff from Allestree got in touch and said:

“When cutting your lawn, do not use the grass box, meaning the goodness in the cutting stay in the lawn, plus no grass waste to remove.”

Guaire in Osmaston added:

“You can do the similar with privet hedge. Cut your hedge, spread the cuttings out and go over them with the mower no collection box.”

And Lisa in Darley Abbey said:

“My neighbour has a large birch tree that OVERHANGS my lawn. Every year, i have to prune this back quite hard. I’ve often re-used some of the longer sturdier, but thin branches to create frames for growing peas and beans. The thinner, bendy branches can be woven to make great hides for hedgehogs, or get the kids making bug homes by stuffing twigs and branches into any open ended box, pipe or tubing that can be hung with string. Our ladybirds love birch branches.”

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