In our monthly gardening column, Ready, Set, Grow!, we share instructions from social enterprise Eats, Shoots & Roots on how to make your own compost in pots.


Pots: minimum 20cm diameter, with holes at the bottom for drainage.

Black soil: store-bought or dug up from your garden.

“Greens” (nitrogen-rich materials): fruit and vegetable peel, eggshells, coffee grounds, tea leaves.

“Browns: (carbon-rich materials): crushed dried leaves, shredded cardboard.


1. Line the bottom of your pot with soil.

2. Add a layer of “greens” into the pot; then add a layer of “browns” or soil over the greens; continue alternating these layers until the pot is full. (If you don’t have enough waste, then just leave it covered with browns until you have more greens another day.)

3. The last layer should always be a brown or soil layer. (If it smells bad, add more browns or soil until it stops smelling.)

4. Once your pot is full, start another pot. You can have as many pots as you like, but seven is usually a good number.



Your pots should be outdoors or in your porch or balcony area.

compost3Uses (after about two months)

Top up your soil: Use the compost material to top up the soil in your existing plant pots.

Plant in it: Use it as a potting mix and plant your seeds, seedlings, cuttings or any other planting material directly into it.


Occasionally, stir the contents of the pot to mix it up and add water to help it break down faster.

Star2’s monthly gardening column, Ready, Set, Grow! is brought to you by Eats, Shoots & Roots, the social enterprise that champions urban edible gardening.