Steps in Making a Compost Pit

Creating your own compost pit provides many benefits for not only your garden, but also your household. It gets rid of trash in a eco-friendly way, saves you money and enhances your plant's growth and health. Even though there are several types of composters available that you can purchase, create a small one on your own at home using twigs and simple tools. All you need is an available location, a little time and manpower.

Choosing a Location

Choose a spot for your compost pit. It needs to be in full sun and far enough from your household that you won't smell any bad odors that might occur. Also make it so it isn't upwind of your household and is out of view of neighbors if you don't want it to be the focal point of your landscape. You will also need a big enough area for the pit after you decide on the size. An average size is a square about the size of a large box, like a four by four foot area.

Build The Foundation

Gather four to eight large branches or garden stakes that are the same height (you can cut them with a pruning saw if needed), and around 12 thinner branches or stakes that are cut to the same height. You will also want a collection of smaller twigs for fillers in between the larger branches. Use the hammer to pound the largest garden stakes or branches into the ground, about four inches deep or more, in the shape you want the compost pit to be, most commonly a square. The larger branches will create the main support, like the four corners. Now use the hammer to pound the 12 additional slightly thinner branches/twigs in between the ones already in the ground. These act as smaller supports to fill in the spaces.

Completing the Compost Pit

Go back to a bottom corner of the compost pit. Now you will work on filling in all the spaces with the smaller twigs. You are essentially creating a square made of wooden branches or stakes to hold the compost in so it won't fall out, and these smaller twigs will be the binding. Starting with one twig, weave it in and out of the branches and stakes until you reach the end, then start with a new twig. Continue to weave all of the smaller twigs around the branches, one after the other, until all the spaces are filled in. Use pruning scissors to trim off any twigs that are protruding out from the composter structure. Tie them together with pieces of twine for added support, if necessary.

Keywords: creating compost, building a composter, compost pit building

About this Author

Lauren Wise has more than eight years' experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food, wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in various magazines, including "Runway," "A2Z," "Scottsdale Luxury Living" and "True West." Wise holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Arizona State University.