Homemade Food Compost Bin

I wanted to compost last year but didn’t have the proper equipment. Or so I thought. I’m learning by the seat of my pants here.

I recently read a magazine article which explained food composting and leaf+grass composting.  I thought I could throw the food on top of the grass/leaves but I was worried about stinking up the neighborhood and attracting animals.

The solution that’s going to work for me: build a compost pile for grass+leaves in the back, and have a separate food composter. When the food compost is broken down we can add it to that grass pile, or just put it into the garden directly.

In the spirit of saving money, I wanted to work with something I had already. I first started saving the compost (banana peels, coffee grounds, tea bags, egg shells, vegetable scraps) in an old plastic bowl in the kitchen. It quicky filled. I saw a bin-type composter in a magazine that had holes in the side for aeration.  Why couldn’t I take my rubbermaid bin and  drill some holes for air? And that’s what I did. Dumped in the food compost, add some dirt with it. Done. As it fills more I’ll add worms as I find them when it rains 🙂 or dig up some garden soil soon. Mix regularly! Not sure how long it will take the food to break down but as worms are added it goes much faster.

Our grass+leaves composter is going to be made from wooden pallets (my husband picks up free from the warehouse) and I’ll post back about that when it’s built.

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5 thoughts on “Homemade Food Compost Bin

  1. That’s a very nice bin! While ‘worms are worms’, it’s not a good idea to put just any old garden worm into a compost bin.

    ‘Red wigglers’ are the compost worms you want to get: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eisenia_fetida

    Red wigglers are fast eaters and live near the surface, where the compost bin mimics. Garden worms prefer depth and are very slow eaters; they might take a whole season to eat what a red wiggler could eat in a month.

    That said, buying worms online is tricky. Some companies overcharge so it’s best to check locally first for any garden groups.

    Good luck!

  2. Pingback: An equation for compost | an earthian

  3. Why did I not think of this lol. We don’t have to worry about neighbors but this would sure help with keeping out the critters. Thanks for ideas 🙂

    • Mine’s breaking down fairly quickly. It’s about half full and the underneath part is black, but I keep adding to it every couple of days. At some point I will have to let it sit and finish breaking down, and start another in a separate bin so that first one can get nice and done. I’m surprised how fast it goes, and I don’t have worms or anything. It only smells bad when stuff’s been in there a couple of days and has gotten moldy (mostly citrus rinds and wet teabags, which I should probably let dry out first.) You could do it too! It’s so easy.

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