One of the most common questions we are asked here at HOTBIN is how do I know my compost is ready? In this video, we’ll show you what you can expect as we empty the contents of our HOTBIN we’ve affectionately named Hagrid. Generally you will find there are three types of material you are likely to remove from your HOTBIN. The best way to use this material can be determined by its decomposition, colour and texture. To start with, let’s take a look at the top layer of the heap. Less than a month old, this waste will still be decomposing so you’ll be able to see identifiable pieces of waste, especially the odd teabag or two. The material will be warm, actively decaying and may show signs of white composting mould. If you remove any material like this, it can be reprocessed by adding it back into the HOTBIN with fresh waste. 30 days of hot composting will produce a nicely broken-down mulch that has no easily identifiable pieces. This compost will appear dark in colour and have a slightly sticky texture to it. Mulch can be used to nourish your vegetable and flower beds or left for a further month or two to fully compost. For lovely nutrient rich compost that’s ready for your garden, you will need to wait a minimum of 90 days. By this point, all of your waste should have broken down and your compost will look a dark brown or black. If everything has gone to plan, you should also be rewarded with a satisfying earthy aroma. HOTBIN compost feels crumbly when dry but is sticky and moist when first removed. The stickiness is due to the presence of humus which is an excellent ingredient for your soil. Humus acts like a sponge for nutrients and moisture and will drip feed your plant roots like an organic fertilizer. Your HOTBIN compost can now be used for container planting or you can dig it into your vegetable and flower beds for soil improvement or top dressing. If you remove any material you feel has not fully composted, it can always be added back into the top of the HOTBIN and reprocessed with new waste. Make sure you subscribe to the HOTBIN YouTube channel today to avoid missing out on any hot composting advice.