Clear away with a bonfire

And use the ash it creates in the garden


If you’ve a plot on an allotment site or you have a sizeable garden with a bit of room, one way of quickly and efficiently clearing away old plant material that’s old, dead and possibly full of pest and disease is to have a safely controlled bonfire.

It’s not illegal to have a bonfire, but you must be mindful of neighbours as to the smoke output and the size of the heap. Keep an eye on it at all times and don’t let it get unmanageable.

It’s really beneficial to have a bonfire – it used to be a more common practice, but gardeners now tend to go to the skip if they have too much waste.

All garden waste, such as cleared crops, particularly heavy, thick prunings and old logs, work well as well as thick leaves and thorny material. And one of the most satisfying components of your heap will be horrid gluts of perennial weeds that could otherwise simply spread around in the compost heap.

Once your fiery clear-up has finished, a fantastic, free resource is the result. A nice pile of ash is perfect for use in the garden to raise alkalinity levels or to put on the compost heap to help it break down a bit quicker. Use it around fruit bushes, to inhibit club root in the soil around brassicas, and as a snail and slug deterrent – they don’t like its dryness and get stuck in it.