At Last New Homemade Compost Bins

Aah, we love our garden compost here at Casa Dirty Boots.  But, the one thing we don’t – well didn’t love was our compost bins.  Oh they were fine and dandy when first created.  In fact we were rather smug that we’d used scraps of wood from the house that were good for little else to make them.

Five years on though and what once was merely wood-wormed was starting to dissolve a little.  The whole bin arrangement needed reinforcements to keep it all dog proof (essential when you are composting humanure).    I shuffled some spare blocks that had been hanging around to dog-proof the fronts as the original wood had rotted too badly, but the end result was exceeding ugly.  Then another year on and the sides had started to fall apart too, making the whole thing virtually impossible to keep dog-proof.

Project “new compost bins” was planned and talked about, and avoided for ever such a long time.  But now I can reveal two beautiful (well look at the old ones and these new ones are real beauties in comparison) bays for recycling all our organic waste.  I am pretty proud of my block laying and not at all proud of my rendering.  But some day in 2011 Mr DB will show off his awesome wood working skills 😉 and sort out hinged lids (imagine the luxury!) and slatted fronts.  It all looks rather snazzy* compared to the old bins, and though not quite as Eco friendly it is all recycled material salvaged from our stock pile of excess building materials left over from nearly finishing the house.  As garden composters go it is sturdy, made from recycled materials and should outlive us both.

For now though they are way better than the old bins, and try as our dogs might they cannot get into them to steal food or chicken bedding so all is well on the veg plot, and the sawdust toilet has been reinstated as the throne of choice.  Now though I cannot wait for the old compost bins to digest their last piles of waste so we can spread it on the veg beds and pull them apart once and for all.

I guess their old place will make some new plant very happy indeed so think we might treat ourselves to something pretty to take its place.  Failing that next years butter nut squash plants would probably be pretty content there.

*snazzy in the way that all compost bin arrangements collect peripheral junk!

7 Responses to “At Last New Homemade Compost Bins”

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  1. Jan says:

    They’re looking very good Lec, and much smarter than the old ones.

  2. goo says:

    We salute you!

  3. d.a. says:

    Looks great!

  4. Rhi says:

    Have you guys had any major issues with critters getting into your piles? We’ve been considering starting a compost pile for such a long time but have been apprehensive to set up a buffet for the wildlife that wander through our property.
    Any tips or suggestions?

    • Hi Rhi,

      We used to have wild-cats that liked to hang out around the old compost bins (till our even wilder moggy sent them away), and we have had foxes. Neither of these I particularly mind, but with the dogs at home anyway we always aim for a compost heap that is animal proof (well bigger animal proof at least) – it is crucial with adding the compost toilet waste to the heaps.

      I never really worry about mice and the small things but the heaps are well away from the house.

      We now have solid walls and tightly slatted fronts along with a hinged lid that is mostly chicken wire on a frame, so small things can get in, but the big boys cannot.

      I guess you have to think about what critters are local and which you really don’t want to encourage.