18 Cool DIY Compost Bin Designs

This woodworkers list of woodworking plans features a collection of construction projects for building various compost bins for your garden that any moderately skilled do-it-yourselfer can build. Also choose a bin that isn’t too big for you to reach into and stir the contents to increase air flow. Our soil is pretty similar to yours, your basic industrial backfill, so I’m hoping that regular mulch and compost will make a big difference over the coming years. You can leave the bin as is, or cover it in washable wallpaper or contact paper to match your decor.

Eventually, you get all your compost into one bin at the end, and material in the top part of this bin cures while you harvest finished compost from the bottom of the bin. It looks like we could be adding toes to the compost bin when the divider is dropped into place. Choose a trash can with wheels to make your compost bin easier to move when full. The bin should be big enough to allow you to ‘turn’ the compost with a shovel or pitchfork, as this promotes aeration and speeds composting.

If someone can provide a recycled wine-barrel to tumble their compost and contain it’s smell, I don’t see what’s wrong with using it. Be one with nature, and ecological, but there’s nothing wrong with finding ways to cut your workload, and be cleaner to mother nature. The thing that matters most, is to just start composting, regardless of how large your compost bin may be! BUILDING and maintaining a compost pile is the surest, easiest way to become a better gardener.

One bin contains active compost material; another bin contains processed (or processing) compost materials; the final bin contains soil you’ll use to cover the active compost bin. The choice again is a matter of the volume of kitchen and yard waste that you plan to compost and the space you have available for your bins. Make three more exactly like it, and you have become the proud owner of your very own… Best Homemade Compost Bin Ever!

If you love to garden, nothing feeds your plants better than compost from your very own backyard, and its price (free!) is impossible to beat. I have had a rotating for over 20 years, which allowed me to compost on the second floor of an apartment building, as well as in a backyard. Although totally unnecessary, I liked the idea of having a cover over the bin that would hold my finished compost. As the compost begins to form, the product can be moved to the second section, where it can heat up and decompose without the addition of any new materials. Once bin 2 compartment has reduced in volume even further, place in the last bin compartment.

A compost bin is a great way to keep waste material out of landfills while at the same time creating wonderfully nutritious soil for your garden and houseplants. Pile turning is easily achieved by lifting the bin, placing it to the side and forking the compost into a new location. If you don’t want to cover it, keep food scraps to the center of the bin and things like grass clippings against the walls. The wood and wire 3-bin unit is a really nice setup that helps to keep composting nice and orderly in the urban or suburban backyard.

The California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery provides detailed instructions for building a portable wood and wire composting bin, single compartment wooden bin, wire mesh composter, and rotating barrel composter. I am a big fan of in situ composting (basically creating a composting system right next to gardens, trees, shrubs etc that will directly benefit from the compost being produced), so I’ll be including instructions on creating those sorts of systems as well. Complete the bin by placing the final boards perpendicularly across the front side.

This is definitely a system I would recommend converting into a vermicomposting bed, since the worms would likely speed up the breakdown process considerably, leaving you with some fantastic worm compost (aka ‘castings’). Compost bins are best when covered, since too much rain will cool the compost and slow the composting process. These are floppy circles of black recycled plastic available from some area governments free or for a small fee. Lightly file each wire along the cut edge to ensure safe handling when opening and closing the bin.

Keeping compost moist is important, which is why it will do well under a deciduous tree that can help keep it from drying out in the hot summer sun. Adequate air circulation enters the bin through large slots on the sides, which make turning the pile unnecessary. I have come across some interesting resources for DIY compost tumblers and will be sure to include them here. The microorganisms in the compost will also help your plants absorb nutrients from fertilizers more efficiently.

The problem with the heap is that there was no way to access finished compost without disturbing the rest of the pile, so all of that goodness never got used. These towers allow the worms to move upward as materials are added and makes harvesting of the finished compost in the tray below much easier than a traditional bin. Contains advice for starting and maintaining a composting system, building bins, and using compost.

But the real brilliance of this design is that when you go to turn the compost, you simply lift off the top tier and set it on the ground next to the bin and start forking the compost over into it. As the pile in the original bin gets lower, you move over the next tier, and fork some more compost over, and then move the next tier, etc. As I added a load of fresh compost from my folks’ bin to the garden a few weeks ago, I couldn’t help but wonder (yet again) why we weren’t making our own. Pallets wouldn’t generally be treated with wood preservatives, but they can be treated with insecticides to kill off wood boring insects.

Robin97 writes: I have never heard where pressure treated lumber is Factually dangerous when used in a compost bin or even as a Raised Bed. Be sure to use redwood or cedar, which are naturally weather resistant, if you want a long-lasting bin. If you choose to purchase a compost bin, many models are available, ranging in price from $65 to more than$300. Maybe you’re looking for an all in one kit, or a compost bin that comes ready to assemble. With three bins, by the time the second one is full, the first one will be delivering compost and the third one will be ready to fill.

Adding compost moderates pH and fertility problems, so you can concentrate on the pleasures of gardening, not the science of your soil’s chemical composition. Discarded wooden pallets from factories or stores can be stood upright to form a bin. The classic compost bin is a wood-framed box, homemade and typically three feet cubed, though some compost gurus prefer a four-foot cube, which will handle exponentially more material. An Ohio firm developed the concept where a community contracts with a bin manufacturer to operate the entire program.

Practical Projects for Self-Sufficiency (Cold Springs Press, 2014), by Chris Peterson and Philip Schmidt, shows you exactly how to build dozens of projects for a self-sufficient lifestyle, with beautiful photos and complete plans for each. The temperature of your compost pile does not in itself affect the speed or efficiency of the decomposition process. Make sure you subscribe to free weekly emails so you don’t miss a single tutorial!

A wood and wire three-bin turning unit can be used to quickly compost large amounts of yard, garden and kitchen wastes. When I get ready to build a permanent compost bin, it will probably have a concrete paver floor…but this bin is the most awesome I’ve seen so far! At the community garden we needed a cheaper option, so we built the same 3-bin unit using free pallets.