Compost: Because a Rind is a Terrible Thing to Waste

I have decided that this is going to be the year that I take our family garden to the next level.  Last year, we had a wonderful garden and have decided to double its size this year because we all enjoyed it so much.  One of the things that I have been learning about is composting. Now let me start by saying that this is something that I have never attempted at all. To be honest, I have always had this vision of my compost pile being a big stinky heap of trash in my backyard.  I also have a pretty small yard, so I don’t have a far away place to stash this bin if it becomes stinky.  I have decided to put my worries aside and take on this task once and for all.  I have had many gardeners tell me that what sets a spectacular garden apart from a regular garden is good compost.

I have been doing my research and it seems that I can compost on a rather small scale.  This has been one of my other main deterrents before now. I had always heard that the bigger the compost bin the better the compost.  After hours of reading internet articles about this, it seems as if that is not true.  I recently read an article about people who compost in small trashcans on the rooftops of city apartments.  If they can do it then so can I…right? My goal for this weekend is to make a small compost bin.  Here is a link for how to make your own compost bin out of a plastic container.  I have to admit I have not been this excited about one of my project in a while.  The article I linked makes it sound like this is going to be a pretty easy process.

One of the reason that I decided to post this before I have even created the bin is I am hoping to get some advice from all my fellow gardeners.  I did read a bit about how to keep the bin from getting stinky by not letting it get too wet, but I am still concerned about bugs and rodents taking over the bin. I mean, it seems only natural that these things would want to take over my bin.  I would love a couple of guest posts from all of you out there that have created compost bins, so that I can hopefully let go of my concern of being the “lady with the stinky, rodent and insect infested garbage pile in her yard”.  I guess even if I never get good compost, I will surely get a laugh from this one.  Ok so here is the plan. I am going to wake up tomorrow (bright and early because my girls get up with the birds) and make my very first compost bin.  So please, help a mommy out and send me some advice and tips so that I will have the best garden on the block.  I will continue to post as I get this up and running and will add all the things I am learning as I go along through this project.

I am going to add a few links here to catch people up on what I have been reading in case anyone wants to jump in on the fun and learn how to compost along with me. Come on and give it a try…you know you want to!

Composting 101 

small scale composting -this one is a little larger scale than I had in mind but had some good tips

The scientific explanation of composting 

163 things you can compost– this is awesome! Thanks Heather for adding it.

Composting in the city, with little money

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6 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Heather said,

    Love this! We started a compost a little over a year ago out of a small garbage can with a cover – we used bungee cords to keep the cover on (rodents out!!!!) – and use the kids to roll it around outside to keep the smell down and give it some oxygen!!! I wanted to share with u a website with a list of things u can use for ur compost ——- some of them are pretty obvious, but there are some that i would have never thought of!! Check it out —- http://www.plantea.com/compost-materials.htm

    Dylan loves it when he can add the last one to the pile!!!! Happy Composting Kel!!!

    • 2

      kellycy said,

      Thank you so much for this awesome info Heather. I really appreciate it. I added the site you sent me to the article on composting. What a great resource. I was totally surprised by some of the things that you can compost. Thanks again!

  2. 3

    Mandy Miller said,

    I have always had a compost pile, mainly a big pile of everything compostable without thinking about it too often but to turn occasionally. Last year, we tried a tumbler that turned into a very stinky experience since we never felt like putting that much work into the science of it. Mostly, I suggest starting small and simple. a 3×3 bin where you throw all scraps and leaves/twigs in will do fine. Even neglected compost does reap a wonderful product in the long run. Enjoy!

  3. 4

    Keren C. said,

    Kelly, thanks so much for posting this. I’ve been thinking of doing this for years, just never knew where to start. New Haven even gives out free compost “bins” (its actually just a hard plastic cylinder type thing, I haven’t used it yet, but I think I will now. My small garden also was a hit last year, I want to expand it too. I’ll let you know if I discover anything to share too.

  4. 5

    If you keep leaves from last fall on top of your pile, it helps keep the smell down. If you need some of last years leaves, I have some extra. We have a compost tub that fits in our freezer. We put all our kitchen scraps in it so we only have to dump every few days. We started keeping it in the freezer after noticing the fruit flies.

  5. 6

    Claudia Caldwell said,

    Can’t wait to eat the yummy veggies from your garden.
    CeCi


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