Last year my dad helped me build some boxes for raised garden beds. He’s not in town anymore, but his influence lingers.
In April he wrote a blog post about how to build a garbage can composter. I filed that away, since Yoli had wanted to begin composting for a long time. She has always been very good about making the most use of food items.
Yesterday I finally got out the drill and a new green trashcan and got to work. The project was pretty easy, but boy was it hot outside.
The steps are simple. Here they are, adapted from my dad’s blog:
- Drill holes all over the can, including on bottom.
Dad drilled 1/2-inch holes. I didn’t have a bit that size, so I went with 3/8. The holes lets air circulate, and ensure the can won’t fill with water.
- Secure the lid with machine screws.
A composter like this one should be rolled around on the ground at least once a week, so it’s important to make sure the lid won’t come off by accident. My dad’s solution was to use 1/4-inch machine screws pointing up, secured with wing nuts. I drilled small 3/16 holes in the rim of the can, to help the machine screws stick in the plastic. Larger 5/16 holes in the lid make it easier to put the lid on.
- Make a base.
I have leftover cinder blocks from when our house was rebuilt after the tornado. I decided the composter would live behind our garage in a spot we don’t use for anything else. I took a square point shovel, cut through the weeds and ivy, and made two somewhat-level troughs in which to place the cinder blocks. Then I set the composter on top.
Yoli already had a bag of scraps to put into it. Hopefully the worms will be happy and after a while we’ll get some good compost for the garden.