• Recycling circa 2004
  • A good selection of veggie waste
  • The worms do the work
  • Harvest time
  • The finished product
  • Egg boxes ready for reuse
  • Shredded paper awaiting collection
  • Bath recycled as Cattle trough
Reclaimed Waste

Bedknobs Recycling and Reuse rate for 2014-2015

Waste Disposal 2014-15
  • Generated - 1270kg25.0cwt
  • Reused - 54kg1.1cwt
  • Recycled - 772kg15.2cwt
  • Landfill - 444kg8.7cwt

See the Waste Disposal page for more details.

Paper & Card Waste 2014-2015
  • Paper - 130kg2.6cwt - Recycled
  • Cardboard - 59kg1.2cwt - Recycled
  • Cardboard Boxes - 14kg31lb - Reused
  • Egg Boxes - 7kg15lb - Reused
  • Shredded Paper - 15kg33lb - Recycled as Bunny or Chicken bedding

See the Waste Disposal page for more details.

Minimising Waste

Along with the three R's - Reduce Reuse Recycle - there is a fourth that we try beforehand and that is Repair. Over the years this has become a factor we seriously consider whenever we purchase something.

However there's always an end product that needs to be disposed of and here's how we do it.

Veggie Waste

Gets composted along with waste from friends and neighbours without bins – or gardens! See pics of worms in compost heap.

Old bread, left-over toast and end of cereal packets all go to our friends who have bird tables locally. Any fresh cabbage or cauliflower leaves together with fresh grass clipping go to Teresa who has some wonderful hens who supply some of our free-range eggs.

Based on our Waste Disposal figures for 2014-2015 we actually composted 161kg3.2cwt of vegetable waste.

Garden Waste

Deciduous leaves rot down in leaf-pens and return to the garden as mulch. Woody clippings and non-compostable leaves are burnt and the ash returned to the garden. Felled trees are logged and go to friends and neighbours with wood-burning stoves - some are left in piles to encourage wildlife.

Over the years, we have been forced to fell several large trees. Every bit of every tree has been recycled. The foliage and small branches get chipped and returned to the garden as mulch. The larger branches get logged and go to friends and neighbours with wood burners.

An elderly Cyprus tree was a case in point and you can find out more on our Macrocarpa page.

Plastic pots from nurseries are reused where possible or donated to neighbours with allotments. Suffice to say that we don't measure the garden waste due to sheer impracticality.


Packaging - the 'unsustainable' variety is definitely at the top of our 'hit list'. We will go to extreme lengths to avoid non-degradable packaging such as plastic bags, vinyl and polystyrene. Over the last 5 years, suppliers have got better and are tending to use more cardboard and less plastic.

Ecos Organic Paints are one of our Packaging Heroes. The paint cans - recyclable steel - are delivered in boxes packed with cardboard egg trays for protection. We freecycle the boxes and compost the egg trays, but not before Mischief discovers another comfy bed.Bath recycled as Cattle trough

So too the Supplier of natural, organic skincare and cosmetics, There Must be a Better Way. A recent delivery of water based nail polish and remover, came packed in a small cardboard box with cornstarch padding/protection – now composted!


E-mail is used whenever possible. When printing is necessary, will print double-sided. Paper including junk mail printed only on one side, gets used for drafting paper before recycling. Secure documents get shredded and go for bunny bedding via friends or Freecycle - Bodmin and hopefully then onto a compost heap.

Less Paper...We reckon to have saved around 10kg22lb each year in paper weight by cancelling trade catalogues, no longer necessary since all our suppliers now have websites.

and ... even less since signing up for paperless bills where available.

Getting Rid of Stuff

Networking groups are great for this, so too are ads in local papers, cards in shop windows, Charity shops, and local recycling facilities that will repair goods then sell them on at an affordable prices. And probably our best discovery is Freecycle whose sole mission is to keep stuff out of landfill. You can offer things - and you can ask for something that you want. The only criteria is that you are giving it away FREE – and so is everybody else. It enables 're-use' which is a great way of avoiding recycling or landfill and just a really good way to declutter your life!

Waste Disposal

So where does it all go? In 2014 we started to categorise and record every bit of waste leaving the house. Sounds geeky, but it's really simple as we use luggage scales on a hook by our back door and make a note on a scrap of paper. It's surprising how it all adds up. Check out our Waste Disposal page to find out more.