A composting bin

Can I put ivy in my compost bin?

NO ✋🏼

You can't put ivy into your composting bin!

Key info
No category📂
6 months - 2 years

Get the right balance of brown and green composting materials in your bin with our expert guide.


When it comes to composting, one of the common questions that arise is whether or not ivy can be added to the compost bin. As avid gardeners and environmentally conscious individuals, we all strive to make the most out of our organic waste and contribute to a greener environment. However, when it comes to ivy, it is best to refrain from adding it to your composting bin. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind this recommendation and provide alternative methods for disposing of ivy.

The Challenge of Ivy's Fast Regrowth

One of the critical factors to consider when composting is the decomposition process. In the case of ivy, its ability to regrow rapidly poses a significant challenge. Unlike other organic materials that break down over time, ivy has the remarkable ability to regrow quickly. This means that if you were to add ivy to your compost bin, instead of decomposing, it would continue to grow. This not only hinders the composting process but can also lead to unwanted ivy growth in your compost pile.

The Importance of C:N Ratio in Composting

To ensure the success of your composting efforts, one must maintain the right balance of brown and green composting materials. When it comes to ivy, its carbon-to-nitrogen (C:N) ratio plays a crucial role. Ivy has a C:N ratio of 60:1, which leans more towards the brown side. The C:N ratio refers to the proportion of carbon-rich materials (brown) to nitrogen-rich materials (green). Achieving the optimal C:N ratio is vital for the proper decomposition and transformation of organic matter into nutrient-rich compost.

Why Ivy Should be Avoided in the Compost Bin

While ivy may seem like a suitable addition to your compost bin due to its plant nature, its ability to thrive and regrow even in the composting environment raises concerns. The last thing you want is for your compost to become a ground for unwanted ivy growth instead of effectively breaking down your organic waste. Therefore, it is best to avoid adding ivy to your compost bin altogether.

Alternative Methods for Disposing of Ivy

So, what can you do with ivy instead? If you have a considerable amount of ivy to dispose of, there are alternative methods that you can consider:

  1. Mulching: Rather than composting ivy, you can use it as mulch in your garden. Mulching ivy can add an attractive layer of groundcover while preventing its regrowth. It can help suppress weed growth and retain moisture in the soil, benefiting your garden ecosystem.

  2. Direct Disposal: Another option is to send your ivy to a green waste collection facility. This ensures that the ivy is properly managed and doesn't pose a threat to the environment. Green waste collection facilities have the necessary resources and processes in place to handle ivy in an environmentally friendly manner.


In conclusion, while composting is a fantastic way to reduce waste and create nutrient-rich compost, ivy is not a suitable addition to your compost bin. Its rapid regrowth and imbalanced C:N ratio make it challenging to decompose effectively. Instead, consider alternative methods such as mulching or utilizing green waste collection facilities to properly manage and dispose of ivy. Remember to maintain the right balance of brown and green materials for successful composting and a thriving garden ecosystem. By making informed choices, we can contribute to a more sustainable environment.

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