If you want to give composting a try before committing to a full-sized compost bin, you could try using a small plastic storage container as a compost bin. This easy and simple project will yield you composed in absolutely no time. Read on to find out how to make a plastic storage bin composter.
- You will need an 18-gallon plastic storage bin, a drill, drill bits, wire mesh, kitchen scraps, shredded newspapers, or yard waste.
- Get a plastic storage bin. You probably already have a plastic storage bin in your garage or basement but in case you don't, they're easily available everywhere. The bigger the storage bin, the better. The plastic bin you want to use for this project should hold about 18 gallons, and it must have a lid. If you can also get a second lid, you can use this to catch the liquids that will leach out of the bin. This will prove to be useful later on.
- Prepare the bin. To help your compost decompose faster, you need air to circulate around in the bin. To do this, you will need to drill small holes. Using a drill - it doesn't matter what size - drill plenty of holes on the sides, bottom, and lid, spacing them an inch or two apart from each other. Line the bin's interior with hardware cloth or wire mesh to keep rats and other pests out.
- Put your bin in a convenient spot. The beauty of the plastic storage bin composter is that it's so small; it can fit anywhere, even if you don't have a yard. The balcony, patio, garage, or porch will do just fine. If there is plenty of space in your house, put the bin outside the kitchen door so it's easy for you to compost kitchen scraps.
- Fill up the bin. Put in anything that you would normally throw into a compost pile: vegetable peels, weeds, leaves, coffee grounds, egg shells, grass clippings, and tea bags all work great. Chop them up into small pieces so it will break down faster. You can chop fruit and vegetable peels with a knife or run them in a food processor or blender.
- Aerate and maintain your bin. You can do this by giving it a quick shake every day. If the contents of the bin are damp or if there is an unpleasant odor coming out o fit, add some shredded leaves, newspaper, or sawdust. This will balance out the ratio of greens to browns. If the contents are too dry, add more moisture-rich items like overripe fruits or vegetables.
- Harvest your compost. The easiest way to do this is run it through a simple compost sifter. This will separate large pieces from the finished product. Anything that needs to decompose further can be left in the bin. As for the finish composed, you can use them immediately in the garden or store them in the bin for future use.