Friday, June 23, 2017

Our New Compost Bin

Several years ago the city switched us over from standard trash cans to using wheeled totes.  Once that happened we were left three trash cans in need of a new purpose.  We drilled one full of holes and used it as our compost bin and it worked fairly well for quite a while.  When it fell apart we emptied it into another can and continued on.  It worked and I thought it was a nice way to reuse the cans rather than put them into the landfill.  But now it's time for a real compost bin.

If it looks like I'm always wearing the same outfit for projects
you're right!  I only have one set of grungy duds just for these occasions

Unlike the Chicken Coop Expansion project this one I actually spent some money on.  I planned it after watching numerous Youtube videos on composting, compost bins and building your own.  After all was said and done I built one that will serve our needs quite nicely.

I bought two pressure treated 4 X 4s and fifteen 6 foot cedar fence boards and got to work.  I  saved the cost of a third 4 X 4 by reusing some wood I already had for the inside center vertical supports.

I won't go into details on how I built it because there are plenty of videos on Youtube to help you if you decide to build one yourself.  They go together pretty quickly too.  We spent about two hours putting this one up.

I put a layer of cardboard down in the bottom of one of the bays because apparently worms love cardboard and this will help us really get things started.  We added a little bit of soil, some chicken manure and emptied the collection container I keep under the kitchen sink into it.  A couple days later we mowed and raked the lawn and added the pile of clippings.

If it looks like I always seem to have a beer going when I'm working
on projects that's probably because I do

We'll keep adding to it and when the one bay if full we'll start on the other one and allow nature to do its thing.  By next spring we should have some pretty nice compost to spread around and add nutrients to the lawn and flowerbeds.


  1. How will you get at the piles to turn them? I don't see an access panel...?

    1. From the top. Not too different from how we did it with our trash cans.

  2. Awesome!! I've been wanting a compost bin for awhile. I'll show this to my husband.

    1. It is super easy construction and not all that expensive. I spent $56 on it, way less than buying one. I like that it is lower in front so easy to load stuff in and turn. Hope he makes you one. :)

  3. We rotate 2 old rubbermaid totes. My husband drilled some holes in the bottom for drainage - just like your old trash cans! They work great.

    - Molly

    1. They really do work well, don't they? I'm wanting to compost more yard debris so I thought I'd better go with a bigger bin this time.


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