7 Easy DIY Composter Plans to Build Your Own Compost Bin

Build your own DIY compost bin

There are many different brands of compost bins available for purchase on the market. Each of these are designed to help dispose of organic materials, keeping it out of landfills while helping you pack your garden’s soil with nutrient-rich plant food each growing season. The compost bins gardeners can purchase range in price from $20 (for a small kitchen compost container) to $1,400 and up (for large outdoor composting setups).

Though many of the composting systems available on the market are fully loaded and designed to get the most out of your kitchen and garden scraps, most of them are simply containers with added holes for aeration and drainage. Why spend that much money on something you can make yourself out of materials you could find in a junkyard? Continue reading “7 Easy DIY Composter Plans to Build Your Own Compost Bin”

Compost Drums: 5 Models, Compared

There are a lot of different types of composters out there!

Compost drums are typically bins that tumble or rotate in some fashion, which helps keep your compost mixed up. Keeping your compost well mixed can be a big plus, if you want to compost faster.

The disadvantage of compost drums is that they don’t hold as much material as other types of composters. They usually hold somewhere around the 50 gallon range, because anything much bigger than that gets too hard to tumble.

Here are 5 different compost drums that you might consider if you’re looking for one.

The Envirocycle Compost Drum sits on a base with rollers built into the bottom. You spin it in place on top of the base to keep your compost mixed. The coolest feature is that the bottom part also holds 5 gallons of compost tea that drains out of the drum. You can either add it to your watering can to use it, or pour it out on your flower beds or garden directly if you want to add a big microbial boost. Usually costs around $149.

The Compost Wizard Jr Drum holds about 53 gallons, and also sits on a base. The base on this one doesn’t collect compost tea, though. It’s not quite as easy to open and close the lid as the Envirocycle, but it’s still a dependable unit. Around $149.

This 55 gallon compost drum is actually made from a recycled food drum! So you’re reusing something that might otherwise go into the landfill to create compost with kitchen and garden scraps that might otherwise go into the landfill. How’s that for a double win? This one flips end over end, on a stand. It’s extremely durable, because you know how tough those food barrels have to be to make it all around the world, or across the country. Costs around $199.

The Tumbleweed compost drum also sits on a stand and flips vertically, instead of horizontally. The coolest feature about this compost drum is that it has lids on both sides, so it’s always easy to add more materials! The legs are made out of galvanized steel, so they are very sturdy and will stay out in the weather without rusting. It costs around $189.

This Joraform compost drum holds more than the rest of these models — 70 gallons. It has a bunch of handle grips around the middle portion so that you can grab and turn it. It’s kind of hard to see in the picture. This is a metal compost bin, with metal legs. Unlike the other drums, this bin has two different compartments so that you can fill one up, then let it break down as you are filling the other compartment, and then start all over. It also has this weird insulation material inside that works very well in cold weather months. It’s usually around $399. They also make a smaller version.

Do you have any questions about these units? If so, leave me a comment and I’ll see if I know the answer, or can look it up for you!

Alternatively, if you’re using one of these, please share your experience.

Wooden Compost Bins: Buy or Build Your Own?

Some people prefer the natural look of a wooden compost bin. Although most of the commercial compost bins you see these days are plastic, you do see some wooden compost bins now that are already made.

Here are two wooden composters that I like that you can buy.

This cedar bin has two large sections so that you can keep two compost piles going at once and compost large amounts of materials. It’s a great choice if you like to compost leaves, which take up a lot of space. Cedar is very durable, and it’s also a readily available wood that is eco friendly.

This spruce composter is made from FSC certified sustainable wood. It has a really nice look, and the wood has been heat treated for extra durability. The lid is nice, and the extra large spaces between slats allow good aeration.

But what if you want to build a wooden compost bin yourself? You still have a lot of options.

I really like this booklet that has a bunch of different plans for compost bins that you can build yourself. There are a lot of ideas for different styles of bins, and the instructions are clear.

You can also find plans online to build a wooden composter yourself, if you’re the handy type.

The University of Missouri Extension has free plans for several types of compost bins, including a cedar wooden compost bin.

Any other good sources for wooden composter plans out there that I might have missed?