Monday, April 19, 2010

City Composting - part 1

Our city does a fantastic job recycling most of our trash. We usually have mostly food scraps in our can. To create even less waste we wanted to try composting our fruit and veggie scraps. Because we live in a city and don't have much room for large compost piles, we needed a small bin. We also wanted to make sure we could keep animals out of the container. There are a lot of great composing containers that we could buy, but didn't want to spend a lot of money buying something that we thought we could make ourselves. So last summer Rebecca decided to make a compost bin out of a plastic tub.. She envisioned lots of beautiful compost for her garden. Let's just say it did not turn out well. Apparently not having enough ventilation can create a very stinky and slimy situation. So we are going to try this again this summer.

After bravely opening last summers bin, we washed it out (so gross!!!). Then we drilled a lot more holes all around the bin.









We used a 1/4 inch drill bit. We kept the holes near the top of the bin.

Then we added the goodies: grass clippings, leaves, coffee grounds, fruit and veggie scraps and dirt from old flower pots. (NO MEAT!)




To keep animals out of the bin we keep a few bricks on top.


We have been shaking the bin every few days and adding water when it seems dry.

Keep your fingers crossed for us! We'll let you know how this season's compost bin works out.
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26 comments:

  1. Excelent idea but i really thing that your plastic tub need more holes because the plastic works like a sauna so you need more air!

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  2. We did something similar a few weeks ago and I think we're about 10 days from fully cooked dirt. I used a rubbermaid trash bin, drilled a ton of holes, filled and 1-2x a week I tip on its side and roll it.

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  3. I had the same problem with slime mold growing in my homemade compost bin - beyond gross! I contacted a garden center and they suggested I drill more holes in the very bottom of the bin so it will say moist but water won't collect in the bottom of the bin.

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  4. You need to add some red wriggler worms and they will eat everything and turn it into the most delicious soil! (google the book title Worms Eat My Garbage or Worm Composting) Just add the worms, some shredded paper once in awhile to absorb the excess moisture and you'll be amazed!

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  5. Just had to tell you I posted about making vinyl bowls today - giving you all the credit for the idea, of course! It is so much fun and I can't wait to try the cuffs! Here's the link:
    http://sceneofthegrime.blogspot.com/2010/04/bowled-over-by-vinyl.html

    Come see me talk about you!

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  6. Thanks for all the great tips. We'll try adding more holes to our bin. We had heard about using the red wiggler worms. After our last failed attempt at composting, we were a little worried about what might happen to those poor little guys if left in our hands.

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  7. We have been wanting to do a compost too, but are hoping to move soon and we are waiting to do that (so we don't have to move a stinky compost bin, tee hee ;) I found one for $300 that looks really nice...but 300 dollars, sheeesh!! I like your idea, I hope it works.

    Jamie :)

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  8. Nice! If you haven't already, put some holes in the bottom so worms can make their way to it and speed along the composting.

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  9. Great job. It looks just like my vermipost bin!

    http://easyfrugalliving.blogspot.com/2010/04/make-your-own-vermipost-bin.html

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  10. I love it! I have been really wanting to do this...maybe I will start now :) I have a link party on saturdays that I would love for you to join
    www.iamonly1woman.blogspot.com

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  11. I'll be interested to know how it works for you.

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  12. Do you know that the city of Chicago subsidizes the purchase of the big $300 compost bins, so they will only cost you $35. Anyone can get one as long as they have a Chicago address, just have a friend come with you to be your "beard." I think the next site location is actually May 9, just google Chicago and Compost Bin and it should take you right to it. They also sell the rain barrels for super cheap too!

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  13. Good luck, I hope it turns out - keep us posted. :)

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  14. i started doing compost on my balcony last year and, like you, the first time didn't go well but for the opposite reason: i let it air too much (i used one of those little plastic trash cans with all the little openings all along the sides and bottom) and everything inside just dried up. this year i'm doing what a friend did with success: a big plastic bags with lots of holes poked in it inside a plastic trash can with a lid. but at the bottom you have to put a lot of little twigs to let air get through. it seems to be working so far! good luck with yours!

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  15. great idea! I'll have to try that!

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  16. this is a awesome idea. i have been thinking about composting at our house for a while....this could be great

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  17. Hi -- This is my first time visiting your blog and I really am enjoying it. This compost idea has caught my eye. I've tried several different methods and always end up throwing in the towel. I found you by way of Laurie @ Scene of the Grime. I'm going to follow you, and I invite you to do the same with my blog. I would also love for you to link up this post at the Boardwalk Bragfest today, if you have time to do so. You look like a pretty busy lady!

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  18. I've been looking for an easy affordable way to do this! It would be perfect for our Bring Spring Linky party over at Scraps N' Strings.

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  19. What a great idea!

    I'm hosting "Saturday is Crafty Day" on April 24th and I'd love it if you stopped by!

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  20. Aaah, hope you get "gold" from it--what a great idea!

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  21. I will be anxious to see how this turns out for you. I have been wanting to get started composting here, too!

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  22. You have my fingers. I hope to do the same, so I'm waiting to see your success.

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  23. Hi,
    I followed you over from the Life As Lori link party. I am now a follower of yours. I would really love it if you stopped by and visited me too. Be sure to enter the drawing if you do. Keep up the good work. Rory http://toolsareforwomentoo.blogspot.com/

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  24. I agree that you need more holes, esp. in the bottom for drainage. I used 1/2 inch drill bit last spring and my compost is cooking wonderfully.

    http://funmajors.blogspot.com/2009/03/compost.html

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  25. That is such a great idea. So helpful too! Thanks for sharing at 'Look at me, I'm SO Crafty!' at Fun to Craft.

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  26. Hi, did you have any success with composting?

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