Directions for Bin Composting

Overview

Composting is an easy way to recycle your kitchen and garden waste while simultaneously providing nutritious organic food for your plants. One of the most important considerations when considering bin composting is size. Consider the amount of material you will have to compost when choosing the size of your compost bin. To work efficiently, your compost bin must be about halfway full or more at all times. Small piles in large bins will be too shallow, take too long to compost and smell unholy as the material inside it begins to rot.

Step 1

Cut all compost material into small pieces. Small compost material breaks down more quickly.

Step 2

Fill your compost bin with a variety of wet (food scraps, tea bags, coffee grounds) and dry (paper, plant waste) material. Compost piles with the widest variety of material and closest balance between wet and dry material work the most efficiently.

Step 3

Add a thin layer of garden soil to your compost pile once monthly. This soil contains a fresh supply of the microorganisms that break down the organic material in your bin.

Step 4

Turn the contents of your compost bin frequently--once every two weeks or whenever you add new material to the pile. Use a stick or other disposable implement to mix and turn the material thoroughly. If your compost bin is a tumbler model, simply turn the handle a few rotations to mix up the contents.

Step 5

Check your compost pile's moisture level periodically. It should be just about as moist as a wrung-out sponge at all times. If it is too moist, add more dry material and turn it more frequently to air it out (empty your bin of soggy material and spread it out to let it dry then put it back in the compost bin). If it is too dry, add a little bit of water and then turn the pile.

Things You'll Need

  • Compost bin
  • Knife
  • Food and plant scraps
  • Garden soil
  • Water
  • Stick

References

  • Compost Council of Canada: About Composting
  • London Canada: How to Compost at Home

Who Can Help

  • What to Compost
Keywords: compost bin, how compost, garden compost

About this Author

Emma Gin is a freelance writer who specializes in green, healthy and smart living. She is currently working on developing a weight-loss website that focuses on community and re-education. Gin is also working on a collection of short stories, because she knows what they say about idle hands.