How to Build Residential Compost Bins


Composting at home is an environmentally friendly way of turning your kitchen garbage, yard clippings and left-overs into a rich fertilizer for your plants and garden. Composting is simple to do once you have a place that is not down-wind of the neighbors and is far enough away from your home so that you will not notice the smell. The main advantage of composting is it keeps unnecessary items from ending up in the landfill.

Step 1

Decide on the materials with which to build your compost bin. You can use various materials, such as wire, scrap wood, old doors and windows or plastic storage containers. Bins made from wire are the most common and easiest constructions.

Step 2

Cut a piece of heavy galvanized wire to a length of approximately 11 feet long and 3 feet wide. You also need twist ties or other heavy-duty wire to secure the ends of the hoop together. Hold the ends of the wire together and use the twist ties every six inches to hold the piece together. When you get to the end you will have a formed circle with the wire.

Step 3

Choose a location for the compost bin that will be out of the wind and is away from your home and your neighbors. Compost piles can get smelly, especially in hot weather, so place your bin away from any residences.

Step 4

Use a rake and a shovel to clear a space big enough to set the circle in. Try to get the space level so that the bin will not tip over when the wind blows or when you begin filling the bin.

Step 5

Place the bin in the spot that you have cleared away. Shovel some of the soil that you dug up to make the ground level along the outsides of the bin to secure it.

Step 6

Cut another piece of wire to fit on top of the bin and secure it with ties. You can also use a piece of scrap wood, such as plywood.

Step 7

Start your compost pile by places leaves or grass clippings into the bottom of the bin. You are now ready to add kitchen your left-overs.

Things You'll Need

  • Heavy duty wire
  • Twist ties
  • Shovel
  • Rake
  • Plywood


  • Recycle Now: Home Composting - Bins
  • Earth Easy: Composting
Keywords: compost, home composting, compost bins

About this Author

Melanie Hammontree has a master's in business and is working on a master's in journalism from the University of Tennessee. She is a member of the Society for Porfessional Journalists and has been writing for five years. Works include publications with Hall County Crime Examiner, Player's Press and The Gainesville Times.