Making your own compost is an excellent way to recycle what nature gives us. It allows you to make your own fertilizer at home for free and without harmful chemicals, contributing to organic gardening. If you have the cut grass, dead leaves, and kitchen scraps ready for composting, you will need a container to hold them. Here is one that you can build quickly with just a few tools and supplies.
You will need:
• Pressure treated or cedar 2x4s
• Hard wire mesh
• 1 ¼-inch deck screws
• Tape measure
• Construction adhesive
• Speed square
• 4 stainless steel hook and eye latches
• Galvanized L brackets
• Galvanized wire staple fasteners
• Chisel (optional)
Step 1: The size of your compost container determines the length of the 2x4s. Decide on a size and then cut the boards to the correct length with the saw.
Step 2: Draw a cut line, using a piece of scrap wood and the pencil. With the tape measure and pencil, draw another line halfway down one side of the board. Use the saw to cut the board to that point.
Step 3: On the end of the board, use the tape measure and pencil to mark another line halfway across the length.
Step 4: Cut off this piece with the saw or a hammer and chisel. This forms a lap joint. Perform steps two and three for each board, creating four sections for the container frame.
Step 5: Glue the lap joints together with the construction adhesive.
Step 6: At the corner of each lap joint, drill four screws to provide reinforcement.
Step 7: Lay the wire mesh across the wood frame and secure the border to the frame by hammering in galvanized staples.
Step 8: Use the snips to cut the wire to just beyond the wood frame.
Step 9: Bend back the wire ends and secure every six inches by hammering in a galvanized staple. Repeat this for each edge of the frame.
Step 10: Choose a shady spot in the yard for the compost container.
Step 11: Select a side for the hinged door. Join the container frames together on all but that side using the drill, screws, and L brackets. The mesh should be facing the interior of the container. Use the speed square to determine placement for the L brackets.
Step 12: To make the door, install a hook and eye latch at the top and bottom of the frame on both ends.
Step 13: Add the compost, using compost starter and water to get it going. On a regular basis, use a gardening fork to mix the compost.