This essentially maintenance-free composter recycles any food waste (inc. meat, fish, bones, fruit, dairy) as well as pet waste, into nutrients that enrich the surrounding soil. Utilising an in-ground chamber and innovative twin cone system to circulate warm air between the two cones, it creates the perfect environment for worms and micro-organisms to work their magic at speed.
Just bury the basket in a sunny patch of grass or soil about 40cm deep, drop in your organic waste, and the Green Cone (and nature!) does the rest.
I would like to place my Green Cone in a raised bed. How big does the bed need to be?
If you have poorly-draining soil, installing the Green Cone in a raised bed will provide improved aeration and aid drainage. To create the raised bed, dig a hole around 30cm deep and fill the hole with small stones. Stand the cone on top of the stones at ground level and build a rockery around the basket leaving about 15cm gap around the cone to backfill with soil. The bed needs to be approximately 1m x 1m, and at least 50cm high off the ground (see below).
I have clay or poorly-draining soil. Can I still purchase the Green Cone?
Yes - you will just need to make some adjustments during installation. Clay soil can cause problems with drainage and if the water produced by the cone cannot drain off into the surrounding soil, it may stop the Green Cone from working and result in a smelly situation.
There are two options:
Dig the hole deeper and wider, and mix in gravel with the soil when you backfill the hole.
Install the Green Cone in a raised bed: Dig a hole around 30cm deep and fill the hole with small stones. Stand the cone on top of the stones at ground level and build a rockery around the basket leaving about 15cm gap around the cone to backfill with soil. The bed needs to be approximately 1m x 1m, and at least 50cm high off the ground (see below).
How quickly should the contents of the Green Cone be degrading?
The Green Cone is designed to handle around 4.5 litres of food waste every 1-2 days. Food scraps should degrade in one to two months. This process is commonly faster in summer and slower in winter. If set-up correctly, the Green Cone shouldn’t fill up like a normal composter and will only need to be cleaned out every 2-3 years. If you notice your green cone becoming full and the contents not degrading quickly enough, particularly in winter, you can try adding some accelerant.
Can I add garden waste to my Green Cone?
No - you can’t add garden waste to your Green Cone.
Does the Green Cone produce compost for my garden?
The Green Cone breaks down food waste into a compost tea that goes straight into the surrounding soil, flowers, and trees. It doesn't produce harvestable compost for your garden.
My Green Cone slows down over winter - what can I do to prevent this?
Firstly, it is good to look at the location of your green cone. Is it in full sun or in only partial sun? It is important to place your green cone in a position where it can soak up as much sun as possible!
Secondly, you might also like to try using a compost accelerator (see here). This can often help in keeping things moving in colder weather.
Can I really add pet poo to the Green Cone?
Yes! Because it reaches higher temperatures, you can add small amounts of pet waste to the Green Cone (e.g. poo from one pet). The pet waste should however be balanced with food scraps to ensure that the composting process works effectively.
If you would like to compost greater amounts of pet poo, take a look at the EnsoPet Poo Composter here.
My Green Cone smells and/or the contents are wet and gluggy! What is going wrong?
If your Green Cone smells and/or the contents are wet and gluggy, the scraps are likely rotting/fermenting. This often attracts flies who LOVE the smell and wetness.
Commonly, this is caused by poorly draining soil or the addition of excess water.
If you have poorly draining soil, see "I have clay or poorly-draining soil. Can I still purchase the Green Cone?" above. If the soil is not causing this issue, there are some things that you can do to help shift the environment in the Green Cone:
Turning, mixing or poking holes in the compost scraps with a shovel or stick, with the aim of getting some air through the contents at the bottom. It also helps you see if there are any wet pockets of food that aren't breaking down and draining into the soil below, and helping it do so.
If it's very wet or very stinky, mixing in some dolomite lime (alkaline) or some shredded newspaper (say, a third to a half of a newspaper) in would balance the pH or help dry the contents, respectively. This is a suggestion to be taken in moderation - a bit at a time and observe the effect.
Can I install my Green Cone in a shady position?
If the area is mostly shaded, the Green Cone may not be suitable for your household. Generally, the Green Cone may still work at a slower rate in a location that still has direct sun for more than 1/2 - 3/4 of the day. With less than this, the system may not run efficiently.
Can I plant edible plants near my Green Cone?
If you only plan to add food waste to your Green Cone, you can grow edible food around it. If you plan to add pet poo, we don't recommend growing edible food nearby. This is because pet poo can carry human pathogens. While these shouldn't survive the temperatures produced in the Green Cone, we like to stay on the safe side.