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Building a composter with fencing...

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Building a composter with fencing...

Post  wicked on 4/12/2012, 7:02 pm

I am new at composting and would like to build my own. I get the idea of what to do when using fencing but should I build it off the ground on pallets or right on the ground.... thanks

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  jennifer37918 on 4/12/2012, 7:10 pm

I set mine right on the ground. Worms have crawled into it and that makes me happy. Very Happy

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  RoOsTeR on 4/12/2012, 7:14 pm

Right on the ground. I used some old snow fence I had laying around the place for one of my compost bins and it works great. Pallets work good for an enclosure as well if you have any.



My sister in law gave me the black compost bin about a month or so ago. I was a bit skeptical of it at first and one of my boys would love to paint it like R2-D2, but that thing is a compost machine! Been pretty impressed by it. It builds heat quickly and retains moisture so watering the contents inside is minimal. For free I sure can't complain. tongue

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  Too Tall Tomatoes on 4/12/2012, 7:41 pm

On the ground.


Fence-type Compost Bin <-------CLICK

If you want to look at another compost bin design, click on that link and scroll down about 2/3 of the way. There's directions to build a simple but effective compost bin. It might not be pretty but it's functional.
Not having the proper tools, my compost bin was a bit of a pain to build. Got blisters on my hands from using cheapo wire snips to cut the hardware cloth and also from hammering the fence posts into the ground.

Rooster's looks easier to build.









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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  floyd1440 on 4/12/2012, 8:22 pm

Althoug I built mine as TTT designed and they are working fine. However I like the look of Rooster's too.. It looks easy topick up, move and reload.

It is good to see many different ideas out there and one must decide which one works best for them.


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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  givvmistamps on 4/12/2012, 9:43 pm

@RoOsTeR wrote:Right on the ground. I used some old snow fence I had laying around the place for one of my compost bins and it works great. Pallets work good for an enclosure as well if you have any.




Why do they call it snow fence? Do you make that, or buy it? It looks just like a bunch of sticks wired together somehow. I'm looking for something to contain a compost heap. I haven't decided what yet...but whatever it is, it has to be cheap! My husband is getting frustrated with all the incidentals I've had to get since starting my garden...and I still need to find a way to support my cherry tomatoes. (I can't get any pallets because everyone around here re-uses theirs or recycles them and won't give them to me even when they're busted up a bit.)

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  RoOsTeR on 4/12/2012, 9:55 pm

Snow fence is used as a snow barrier for blowing snow. It's used along highways and interstates here in Colorado. Back in the day, I know it also used to be used on beaches for sand instead of snow. It's used less now around here as "living" snow fence seems to work and look better. I think it's fairly pricey, or I at least wouldn't call it cheap. This fencing is pretty old, but free to me as we pulled it out of a barn we tore down here on our property. Here's some:
http://www.google.com/products/catalog?rlz=1C1CHFX_enUS454US454&q=snow+fence&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=shop&cid=11474732226955298609&sa=X&ei=oYWHT8m9L4O58AGJwMGcCA&ved=0CI8BEPICMAE
As you can see, I also have a pile just sitting on the ground and it does just fine without anything. I keep meaning to put up pallets to contain it, but never seem to get around to it. If you want cheap, this pile method is free.
I will admit, I have the benefit of living on a farm and have no one to contend with when it comes to my compost piles and their appearance or where I place them.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  givvmistamps on 4/12/2012, 10:08 pm

I don't think he'd go for that price right now. We have one full-size pallet, and a half-size one, but I'd need at least one more to get a three-sided arrangement going, then I'd still need a gate of some kind. BTW: I'm not at all worried about neighbors complaining. This town doesn't even have leash laws (MUCH to my irritation!), so I doubt they have laws concerning "unsightly" compost heaps. I just have to keep my pile away from the road or the trash/recycling guys will pick it up on organic waste day thinking it's intended for them. Smile My REAL issue is making my boys understand it's not a place to play...the only way I can convince them to stay OUT of the pile is to put up a fence to keep them out.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  jennifer37918 on 4/12/2012, 10:10 pm

@givvmistamps wrote:

...I'm looking for something to contain a compost heap. I haven't decided what yet...but whatever it is, it has to be cheap!

My compost "container" is an idea from Mel (can't remember if it's in the book or online). 10 feet of 2' wide 1" hole chicken wire connected in a circle with zip ties to make a circle 3' in diameter. I pile everything in it and when it's time to turn it, I just pick it up and set it next to the pile. Then, I scoop everything back in, turning it naturally. Seems like he also suggested you could have multiples that are all at different stages of cooking.

Super easy, fairly cheap, no tools needed.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  givvmistamps on 4/12/2012, 10:21 pm

Wow, that's only $10 cheaper than the snow fence since I need it to be 4' high...so $40 instead of $50. I can get a pound of composting worms for $35, and make my own compost bin out of an old plastic storage tub. Guess I'll just keep piling the weeds & such in the corner of the yard until I can get down to Orlando for a day.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  RoOsTeR on 4/12/2012, 10:30 pm

Guess I'll just keep piling the weeds & such in the corner of the yard until I can get down to Orlando for a day.

It works and is free! Just like in my picture, the pile in the middle composts just fine without anything. As for the boys...I got twin boys that turn 10 tomorrow. I take them out with me to the compost and have them help me each time I turn the piles. I pull the rods out and let them feel how hot they are and explain to them in simple terms what's going on and why it's getting hot. One gets to help me turn, the other gets to control the hose. They both get to pee on the piles. Boys will be boys! They aren't gonna hurt the pile and boys hose off pretty easily Very Happy and they're learning something whether they know it or not.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  Too Tall Tomatoes on 4/12/2012, 10:39 pm

@jennifer37918 wrote:
@givvmistamps wrote:

...I'm looking for something to contain a compost heap. I haven't decided what yet...but whatever it is, it has to be cheap!

My compost "container" is an idea from Mel (can't remember if it's in the book or online). 10 feet of 2' wide 1" hole chicken wire connected in a circle with zip ties to make a circle 3' in diameter. I pile everything in it and when it's time to turn it, I just pick it up and set it next to the pile. Then, I scoop everything back in, turning it naturally. Seems like he also suggested you could have multiples that are all at different stages of cooking.

Super easy, fairly cheap, no tools needed.

This is making me rethink my compost bin this year. It would be so easy to have something like this or what Rooster has.
If I take down my current bin, I'll be able to use the hardware cloth to make a compost sifter.

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composter

Post  wicked on 4/13/2012, 5:40 am

Thanks everyone....all good info....


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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  givvmistamps on 4/13/2012, 8:36 am

Rooster, I just re-read what you wrote. If I let my boys pee on the compost I could get arrested; we're not out on a farm. Maybe if my 5y/o did it, we would get away with it, but my 10y/o, no. What a shame.

I thought of one acquaintance whose husband has recently cleaned out their barn. It occurs to me that they might have some things laying around that would work to contain our compost, so I'll try to catch her on the phone.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  Pepper on 4/13/2012, 2:36 pm

I built mine using 4 ft tall fence wire, 2 in wide by 4 in tall squares(app $50 for a 50 ft roll made 4 bins) cutting at 12 1/2 ft lengths. I bent the tag end to close the circle. Just open the circle, move the bin over, remake the circle , turn into the rebuilt bin.



When I made my cuts I left the 2 inch "end" to bend around to close the loop.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  tombuschy on 11/2/2012, 6:56 pm

There is one great advantage for building right on the ground - you increase exposure to microorganisms, millipedes and earthworms available in soil.
Building a compost pile above a wood pallet might limit this exposure, although it can improve aeration. Overall, I do think it's better to build the pile right on the ground.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

Post  TN_GARDENER on 11/2/2012, 7:23 pm

@tombuschy wrote:There is one great advantage for building right on the ground - you increase exposure to microorganisms, millipedes and earthworms available in soil.
Building a compost pile above a wood pallet might limit this exposure, although it can improve aeration. Overall, I do think it's better to build the pile right on the ground.

I also find that building em on the ground makes it easier to turn the pile

I'd hate to fight with anything down there that would make shoveling/raking any more difficult than it needs to be.

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Re: Building a composter with fencing...

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