Be kind to your Shredder

Kingcups by the pond.
Kingcups by the pond.

knot of hawthorn twigI’m realising that, tough as it is, I’ve got to start being considerate to my garden shredder. In addition to the usual hedge clippings, I’ve also got grasses, docks and chicory that I’ve cut from my meadow area. I’m tempted to overload it by pushing as much in as I can but this just jams it. The best way, I’ve discovered, is to put the material through loosely in small quantities rather than in compacted wodges. As I don’t now get any jamming, this is actually quicker than cramming it in.

knot of woodThe one thing that will stop it with hedge trimmings is a knot of wood. This fragment of hawthorn twig had probably been bouncing around for a while inside the shredder but after I’d stopped it to empty the trug, it got firmly jammed between the blade and the housing when I turned on the machine on again.

The freshly shredded green hawthorn hedge trimmings make perfect composting material. After a day or two, when I felt just below the surface, the heap was throwing off heat and there were white ashy flakes on the edges of the leaf fragments.

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