[This is a post that I started last August (2007), but for some reason didn’t finish and publish. I just ran across it recently and thought I’d wrap it up with a pretty bow for you.]
DIY Compost Bin Construction
It’s pretty easy (and free!) to build a compost bin for your yard or garden. I built this one all with stuff I found in my garage. Inspiration for the design goes to Mike McGrath’s Book of Compost (I think–not 100% positive where the idea came from).
You will need:
- One used 32 gallon plastic garbage can, with lid. Mine has broken handles and a couple cracks in the lid. I’ve had it for years in my garage.
- At least four feet of plastic drainage tile/tubing. I had dozens of feet of this black, ribbed stuff from when we built our house and I tried (tirelessly) to keep the rain spouts from washing away by grass seed.
- A utility knife
- A hand-held drill and auger bit. No precise size–I used a bit that drills a hole a little larger than the circumference of a pencil.
- Organic garbage to dump inside (see my recipe below).
Now the instructions are pretty simple.
- First, cut the drainage tube to a length that will fit level with the top of the garbage can when stood up vertically on the inside bottom of the can (see the pictures below if that doesn’t make any sense).
- Now drill holes all over the can, lid and tube. Space them about every couple inches; even closer on the tube. Just dot that sucker with holes.
- Now, stand the tube in the inside center of the can, so the top of the tube is even with the top of the can. Check to be sure the lid fits nicely, with at least a few inches between the top of the tube and the lid.
- Fill ‘er up and let it rot!
The tube allows air to circulate into the center of the can. This is great news, because it means you don’t have to turn or mix up your compost so often (I still mix mine once in a while).
Here’s what I threw in the can:
- I filled the can a little over half full with brown leaves I collected at the ballpark. I also collected poison ivy during that expedition, so BE CAREFUL WHERE YOU GET YOUR LEAVES!!! While it’s fun to scare children with an elephant man face, it is Read the rest of this entry »