Many of the compost bins are specifically made to hasten the process of decomposition for a lot of organic matter in the yard. The process involves moisture retention and proper aeration and the ideal conditions for aerobic organisms to thrive. In addition, the higher temperature will transform the leaves, bark, stems, dried flowers, and other organic materials into compost to be helpful for the gardens.
This is the same procedure for a “heap” or “pile” that does not have any containers or housing. However, the best indoor compost bins can speed up the decomposition process and help prevent rats in the backyard. The same goes with the tumbler types as well.
Some kinds of compost bins are homemade, while others are available in many online shops. There are possible materials that you can use when you want to create your very own standalone container, and these include the following:
Materials for Homemade Bins
- Branches from Wooden Trees Around You
- High-quality Lumber
- Wire Fence
If you are using lumber to build your compost, know that it is not ideal to use the pressure-treated variety because it is not safe. The EPA has warned about its elevated chromated copper arsenate levels, which can be dangerous if you put this near your vegetable patch. This is carcinogenic in nature and can be harmful.
Aerobic vs. Anaerobic Way of Composting
Aerobic means that an organism will need the oxygen present in the atmosphere to thrive. This is important in gardening and landscaping, where compost is commonly used. Inexperienced gardeners, you may often hear the words aerobic composting and know that this can be possible with well-designed bins. They promote an environment where specific microorganisms can thrive. Most garden owners prefer this, but a smaller group may want to try the opposite approach, anaerobic.
Certain organisms are considered aerobic, and they are also essential ingredients in the good results of the composting process. Read more about composting on this site here.
Without the aerobic microorganisms, the bin will not be able to “cook” adequately. Some people who have tried sticking their hands into the containers may find them hot, and this means that there are enough microorganisms present in the specific pile. Sometimes, combining aerobic designs with others works because it lets the materials “breathe.”
Aerobic processes need you to know the proper mixture of kitchen scraps, yard waste, and other organic materials that you should put inside the bins. Apply the right amount of water in them and turn the entire pile at intervals using pitchforks. When you know the right combinations, the microorganisms will work for you, and they will begin the breakdown process in no time.
In contrast, the anaerobic processes describe bacteria and other organisms that can live without oxygen. The term “anaerobic composting” often refers to the microorganisms’ activities inside the bin, and they have a considerable influence on the overall decomposition. These organisms thrive without oxygen, and they can live under extreme conditions.
The piles for aerobic processes are usually turned regularly to avoid them becoming more “compact.” Movements like turning will keep the oxygen in supply, and this will let the aerobic organisms thrive. The primary goal is to heat up the organic matter, but this is in contrast with the anaerobic way, where fermentation is often the primary goal.
Some gardeners find that they prefer anaerobic processes because they don’t require too much work, and there’s no offensive smell being produced. In addition, the anaerobic microorganisms are working their way into the pile, which can benefit many homeowners who live in an urban environment. Their neighbors do not have to bear with the smell, and the compost doesn’t stink.
More about the Processes of Composting at Home
Some homeowners usually use pure yard waste to do the job, but others add food scraps into the mix. The combination is ideal for those that have bins to prevent them from getting deposited into landfills. However, in some cases, the landfills will take up space in your backyard, and they can produce methane which is a potent greenhouse gas.
Basics to Know
The composting process will usually require three primary ingredients, and these are the following:
- Greens – The greens include vegetable wastes, grass clippings, coffee grounds, and fruit scraps.
- Browns – These include twigs, branches, and dead leaves.
- Water – With the right amount of greens and browns, you can add water to add to the development of the compost materials.
The pile should have an equal number of greens to brown. There should be alternate layers of organic materials, especially if their particle sizes are different. The greens are providers of nitrogen, the browns will act as carbon enhancers, and the water will break down the organic matter and provide moisture.
What to Include?
- Dried leaves from houseplants
- Straw and hay
- Veggies and fruits
- Coffee filters and grounds
- Shells of nuts
- Cardboard boxes
- Shredded newspapers
- Fireplace ash
- Fur and hair
- Wood chips
Things Not to Include
- Twigs and leaves of the black walnut tree.
*This is releasing substances that are dangerous to the plants around
- Charcoal ash or coal
*Harmful to nearby trees and plants
- Products from the dairy like eggs, yogurt, sour cream, milk, and butter
*They create odors, and they can attract flies and rodents.
- Plants that are insect-ridden
*The insects may survive and transfer back to your veggies.
- Lard, grease, fats, and oil
*Creates problems like rodent infestation and attracts flies.
- Fishbones and meat scraps
*Create issues with odors and can attract stray dogs or rats.
- Wastes from pets.
*Contain harmful pathogens, germs, bacteria, and parasites that are harmful to humans.
- Trimmings in the yard that has chemicals and other pesticides.
*Can possibly kill the aerobic and anaerobic microorganisms inside the bins.
You can check with your local composting coordination about what is allowed and not for more information. Some will guide you about the organic materials that are usually accepted in the community, or you can participate in a drop-off program about composting that is beneficial to everyone.