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Discover Subsurface Composting

Low maintenance, efficient, and mess free composting that feeds the soil. Available Early 2019.


Why Subpod?

  • It allows you to compost directly into your food garden

  • Because you’re composting in the soil, your compost is insulated → this means you can compost in temperate or subtropical climates

  • Because it is encased predominantly in the ground, it’s a deterrent to pests and predators

  • The worms are able to move freely between the Subpod module and the surrounding garden in order to distribute nutrients

  • The Subpod is a unique interconnecting design that allows multiple modules to be added to cater to larger volumes of waste. The modular design, along with the bench seating aspect, makes it perfect for cafes and restaurants.


Where can it be used?

Within any garden in an outdoor location, and in most climates or environments globally. We've designed the system to withstand hot and humid environments, as well as cold and snowy environments. Being below-ground works as a natural insulator to the elements, allowing you to compost year round.

Because of it's modular design, it can easily be upscaled and adapted to suit larger volumes of food waste in large settings, such as schools, eco-resorts or community gardens.


What will Subpod actually look like?

You've seen photos of the early prototypes in action, and 3d renders of the proposed production model. Well, it'll be better than both. We're using the renders as the core reference for production, but we will be refining the design even further before we head to manufacturing. It will be flat-packed, durable and high quality - and made from 100% uncoloured recycled plastic.


But why plastic?

We've chosen to use 100% recycled plastic, as opposed to new virgin plastics, which would typically end up buried in the ground anyway. We're just repurposing it for a highly practical use, as a vessel to help rebuild soil and garden health, rather than the out-of-sight out-of-mind approach. The unit is buried in microbe-dense soil in a wide range of conditions, including damp and high humidity areas - and it also doubles as bench seating - so it needs to be durable and long-lasting.


Will Subpod work in any climate or environment?

  • Yes, it will work in most climatic conditions, as long as your garden bed soil is healthy and attended to

  • Big benefit of this system and its subsurface nature


Is Subpod easy to install and put together?

  • The Subpod will be sent to your door in a flat pack

  • There will be a how-to video available to customers that guides them in the set-up process


Can Compost Central install it for us?

  • Yes, depending on your location, we can arrange for a team member to come and install your system and provide an info session to show you how to get the most out of your Subpod.

What can be composted?

Food scraps, including citrus, onions, fish, and even meat on the bone (in small quantities, after 4 months of use); paper and cardboard items; lawn and garden clippings; and a whole lot more. You can view a list of 101 items on our website.


What can’t be composted

  • Chili’s - they’re too hot and burn the gut of the worms, stopping them from reproducing

  • There are a few items you can only introduce into your compost bin after 5 months of installation e.g. meat on the bone and citrus


Does it smell?

Due to it's below-ground design, Subpod is naturally insulated which eliminates the typical nasty smells you'd experience with an above-ground system.


How much do I need to maintain the system?

Very little. Once or twice a week is great. The worms and microbes do most of the work for you - you just need to feed them and turn the compost with an aerator each time.


What should I add to my compost?

  • 2 handfuls of shredded/torn up newsprint (e.g. carbon) per week

  • For added beneficial bonus to the soil, add biochar - add a coffee cup worth each week → purchase biochar from Andrew or another local supplier


How do I know when the compost is ready?

  • When the Subpod is full, leave it for 2 weeks so that the worms and microbes can finish processing all of the waste, then take out 75% of the compost material which is then ready to be put in your garden

  • After the 2 weeks the soil will be jet black, moist and contain very little other material other than the soil, with a sweet earthy aroma - that’s when you know it’s ready to use

  • For the die-hards, it’s easy to separate the worms from the soil and if you’re able to do that then put the surplus worms back into the remaining 15%

  • Reference Andrew’s video regarding how to separate the worms from the castings

  • Please be patient with the dear worms! Don’t try to use the compost before it’s ready


Is it possible to overfeed my compost?

  • Yes!

  • Do not feed the worms for the first week

  • In the 2nd week add 2-5L of food waste per week for 5 weeks

  • After 6 weeks you can compost up to 10L of waste per week

  • After 12 weeks you can compost up to 20L of waste per week


What happens when I go away and can’t maintain my Subpod?

  • Don’t stress, the worms can survive for up to 2 months due to the moistness of the soil surrounding the module

  • There is ample food and nutrients below ground for them to survive and so that they can continue their breeding cycle

Overview How It Works Design Features Prototypes FAQs