How to Build Your Own Compost Bin

Overview

Homemade compost bins provide a low-cost method of creating organic fertilizer out of waste matter for flower and vegetable gardens. Carbon- and nitrogen-based organic matter, layered inside the bin work together to naturally break down into a usable fertilizer. Place a compost bucket in the kitchen to collect coffee grounds, fruit waste, vegetable waste, egg shells and paper products to add them to the compost bin. Increase the amount of matter in the compost bin by adding disease-free garden waste, grass clippings and dry leaves from outdoor garden spaces.

Step 1

Make a compost bin out of 3-foot-high wire mesh fencing by cutting it to a length of 10 feet.

Step 2

Form the bin by overlapping the short edges 3 inches to make a hoop. Secure the hoop by twisting five pieces of heavy-duty wire along the overlapped edges.

Step 3

Place the wire hoop in a full sun area to make a compost bin. Set one open end on a flat, porous surface such as grass, gravel or dirt.

Step 4

Secure the bin in place by spacing four metal fence posts evenly around the inside of the bin. Set the posts tight against the wire bin and pound them into the ground to a depth of 6 inches to hold in place.

Step 5

Fill the bottom of the bin with 3 inches of dry sawdust to help regulate compost moisture. Add brown and green organic matter to the bin in even layers to speed the rate of decomposition.

Step 6

Stir the organic matter in the compost bin every one to two weeks to speed the rate of decomposition. Add water to moisten the contents each time the matter is stirred.

Things You'll Need

  • Wire mesh fencing
  • Heavy-duty wire
  • Wire clipper
  • Pliers
  • 4 fence poles
  • Sawdust
  • Organic matter
  • Water
  • Plywood

References

  • University of Missouri Extension: How to Build a Compost Bin
  • University of Arkansas: Wire Mesh Compost Bins
  • Alameda County Waste Management: Build Your Own Bin
Keywords: build compost bin, homemade compost bin, wire compost bin

About this Author

Jennifer Loucks has over 10 years of experience as a former technical writer for a software development company in Wisconsin. Her writing experience includes creating software documentation and help documents for clients and staff along with training curriculum. Loucks holds a Bachelor of Science major from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls specializing in animal science and business.