The Q&A Archives: Shredder for Small Garden

Question: I have a small yard with many, many herbaceous plants which I would like to shred before they go into the compost pile, so it takes up less space. I have no need for a chipper, and am currently scissoring spent plants to reduce their size which is difficult at best. Any idea where I can get a small electric or hand cranked shredder for such material? I have used a lawn mower at times in the past, but generally I can't get access to one. Honestly, any help or direction would be greatly, greatly appreciated.

Answer: Soft green material tends to jam in chipper/shredders because most are designed to handle woody debris. Instead, try placing your garden leftovers in a metal trash can and then shredding it with a weed wacker. Weed whackers are available in electric and gas powered models. Another method for reducing the bulk of fresh trimmings from a perennial garden is to allow them to wilt in the sun for a few days before composting them, thought this tends to reduce some of the qualities that make for good compost.

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