Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Building a Compost Bin

While we have a large, free-standing compost pile on our Littleton, Colorado, farm, our Missouri property is only half an acre (at most) and my wife insists on a more organized approach to our recycling activities.  We have been faithful about hauling our "yard waste" to Columbia's composting site but have been more negligent when it comes to kitchen leftovers.  In a moment of inspiration, my wife thus "suggested" that I construct a compost bin.

After scouring the internet for ideas, I decided to go with the "wooden crate" style and loaded my pickup with the projected supplies (as usual, a second trip to the hardware store was necessary).  Within 24 hours, we had a first class, wooden compost bin, complete with a hinged lid and screen-covered ventilation ports.  Today, we'll start to load the vegetation but won't have good compost for at least five months or so; when building a compost pile, it is recommended to initially using a layered approach until decomposition is underway (dried vegetation, fresh green clippings, rich topsoil and chicken manure are the suggested starting layers).

I doubt we'll be terribly rigid with our composting activity but the timing of our new project is surely fortunate.  Wild onions already speckle the lawn, dandelions are beginning to appear and grass clippings will soon be abundant; we have plenty of dried leaves and twigs in the flower gardens and, as luck would have it, our neighbors raise chickens.  Now, if we can just remember to take out those orange rinds and veggie leftovers!