Ideas For A Free
Or Cheap Compost Bin
The only thing a compost bin is needed for is to keep your compost heap contained in one place. It helps to keep your pile from being wind-blown over to the neighbors yard.
A good bin will allow air to pass through. Air is one of the requirements for making good compost. A good size for a bin is 3'x 3'x 3' deep. This works out quite well for my free bin which is made up of shipping pallets. (See picture at right) Pallets can be found free almost anywhere. You can look at construction sites, shipping departments of stores or factories and many other places. Make sure they are clean and don't have toxic substances on them.
All I do is wire mine together at the corners to form three sides and I'm done. You can wire them, tie them together with rope, or even nail them together. It's up to you.
Another method for building a bin is to stack up old hay or straw bales to form three sides to contain the pile.
You could also use 36" high wire fencing pulled around to form a 3' diameter circle to hold everything together.
You can stack concrete blocks with the holes on the sides to make a three sided bin.
I'm sure if you look around and use your imagination you'll find other free or cheap material to use for your compost bin.
I'll leave you with some pictures of other styles of bins to get those creative juices flowing. You might need to spend some cash to build these. Some people like to look good no matter what they do or how much it cost. Me, I prefer free.
|This is made by nailing alternating layers of lumber to form the sides. You might want to keep this style lower in height for easy access from the top. You are not limited in size with this construction method like you are with pallets. It might be easier for you to find scrap wood for this than to find other material. |
|This bin is bolted together at the corners with a slot in the front so boards can be added or removed for easy access to the compost.|
|This is getting little too fancy for me. It's just a compost bin for goodness sake. Some people just have to the be Joneses no matter what. I don't try to keep up with them. You just can't win. I'm just kidding.|
You don't have to have your compost pile look like a compost pile if you don't want to. If you're in the suburbs an ugly heap might not go over well with your neighbors. This is a nice looking option.
I'm hoping the above text and pictures get your imagination going on what materials to use to build your compost bin. I'm sure you'll think of things not shown here.
The Compost Heap
Bountiful Vegetable Gardening Homepage