Friday, October 15, 2010


My very first compost!


I made it with this little bad boy, but not like the advertiser's claim:


I don't know if you've seen these advertised, but I found after 6 months of use, it's not the simple matter of neatly throwing stuff in the top then shoveling it out the handy little door in the bottom (while wearing cute white chinos and some Sunday mocs).

For one thing, the door is too small to really get a shovel into. You can get a few shovel loads out of the space near the door (which of course isn't well composted because it's on the outside), but trying to get to the good stuff in the middle is nearly impossible. And forget turning it or mixing it up. Extremely awkward.

BUT!!! I really love the bin, love the handy wide lid, love how neat it is--important since our California yard is measured in square feet not acres. So what I did was remove the bottom panel. The rest of the bin stays together just fine without it. Now, I throw all my stuff in the top, add some water, and on those occasions when I want to turn the pile to speed things up, I simply lift the container off the pile, set it down a couple feet away and refill.

I created a screen with stuff I had laying around:


With my concrete projects, I've got lots of reinforcement screen and mixing bins laying around. I shovel the compost over the top of the screen then dump it into my wheel barrow through the space. Not as ideal as a good wood-framed screen, but I can't nail 4 boards into a rectangle to save my life.

So I'm off! Told the hubby to pick up speed saving those coffee grounds and vegetable scraps. I've got my system down and I'm ready to make dirt!


  1. Hi Lori!

    Just popped over here from your 'what can i grow all year' Gardenweb post. You're a romance writer? How cool is that??

    I want to point you towards a California garden blog that i enjoy reading.

    The garden is located in zone 9 so maybe a little cooler than you but a great source of inspiration.

    I've always been drawn to those tidy composters with their promises of easy compost but suspected that they might not be able to deliver. Looks like you've found a way to make it work ; )

  2. Thanks, Julie! What a great blog, thanks for the link. And yes, I've had some romances published by Harlequin, though I earn a living as an insurance analyst--the eternal opposite of cool. LOL