DIY Compost Bin

DIY Compost Bin

Illustrations by Reed DeWinter

Find plans to build your own compost bin online. This three compartment version has removable wood slats on each chamber that keep your bin looking tidy. Slide the slates out when it’s time to turn or remove your compost.

Here is a great resource from Cornell University with plans for several variations of bins – including the version you see below.

If you build your own, buy lumber that is resistant to rot but not treated with chemicals – cedar is a good option. Find wire mesh fencing at most hardware or feed supply stores and use galvanized metal to keep from rusting.

 A two or three compartment composting bin is ideal if you’re serious about producing quality compost. A recipe of household scraps and yard waste will transform into high-quality top soil to use in flower beds and vegetable gardens.

A two or three compartment composting bin is ideal if you’re serious about producing quality compost. A recipe of household scraps and yard waste will transform into high-quality top soil to use in flower beds and vegetable gardens.


Everyday Compostables

  • Fruits and vegetables — peels, stems, rinds (avoid seeds to prevent sprouts in your garden)
  • Eggshells
  • Coffee grounds and filters
  • Tea leaves/bags
  • Nut shells
  • Shredded newspaper
  • Cardboard
  • Paper
  • Yard trimmings
  • Grass clippings (Herbicide & Pesticide free)
  • Houseplants
  • Hay and straw
  • Leaves
  • Sawdust (from untreated wood)
  • Wood chips
  • Cotton and wool rags
  • Dryer and vacuum cleaner lint
  • Hair and fur
  • Fireplace ashes
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Plans!

Compost ideas that fit any space from Cornell

Ever since his grandfather put him to work squashing potato bugs and shoveling compost in a vast organic garden north of Philadelphia, Cedric has loved the outdoors. These days, he squashes bugs for his green-thumbed partner, Jen. His writing has appeared in Saveur, Cincinnati, This Old House, and Belt magazines. He is the Collector at the Mercantile Library Downtown.