FOR YEARS WE'VE WANTED TO DO THIS. Our very own Compost Bin.
We finally found a solution.
Most of our time is spent in a townhome here in Austin, Texas. Needless to say, we don't have access to a huge greenspace here and we aren't able (due to our community rules) to start our own compost on our small piece of land.
Austin is a pretty progressive city, but for some reason, our neighborhood doesn't have compost pickup. Weird, I know. Literally everyone else does. ANYWAY.
We've been flirting with the idea of a compost to reduce food waste and grow our balcony garden, but we felt pretty weird with having a worm compost and didn't want a box of decomposing veggies hanging out in our kitchen either.
After hitting the internet a few times and admittedly several hours of YouTube search. We found a solution that is REALLY simple. Not stinky, no worms and basically bug-free AND will fit on our balcony. Yay.
So how does it work?
By layering Carbon (paper, woods, dust, etc.) and Nitrogen producing items like leafy greens and veggies, somehow by the grace of God both the carbon and veggie, coffee grounds, eggshells, and paper will break down to dirt in about 2-3 months giving you a nice soil for your plants!
Let's Get Started.
All you need is:
- A 5-gallon bucket with top
- A drill (or hammer and nail)
- Paint straining cloth (optional)
- Some sticks and leaves
- A little bit of dirt
- Spray paint and masking tape if you want to make a cool design on yours :)
How we did it:
Drill holes in the top and sides of the bucket. (wear protective eyewear btw, you don't want any plastic shards in there)
*Don't put holes in the bottom and make the holes a few inches near the bottom on the side for ventilation. Don't make these holes too big, figure about the size of a drill bit.
I chose to put some paint straining cloth over some of the holes and the large ones I made to keep out critters.
I cut little squares and Krazy glued them to the inside of the container, along with some masking tape.
After that, I started to make my base with some sticks, dried plants that I had killed, and some mulch and soil from my neighbor's yard. (They were okay with it)
AND THEN I tossed in some veggies and crinkled up some paper bags I had laying around in my recycling bin as a covering with a little bit of dirt.
Apparently the key is to not have too much moisture and make sure you layer appropriately? I guess we'll have to see!
AND NOW, cover it up, let it sit, add stuff weekly so that you aren't disturbing it too much, and give a roll on the ground once in a while.
It's been about 2.5 weeks and so far it seems like something is happening. Stay tuned for an update in a few weeks!
XX - V & Fly