How do you make a hot composter?
Hardiness Zone: 11
By Kieran from Scotland
Hi, I like the Instructables site, www.instructables.com, for things like this. The site has many designs for build-it-yourself composters.
I just made a place against a brick wall. Put stakes to make a small square and then put chicken wire around three sides to leave an opening. I just began putting my scraps (no meats or fats) and dirt from used pots, newspaper, etc. It began to compost almost immediately, in a week or two! With all the dry weather we have had you may have to "water" it once in a while, but sparingly. I just stirred it when I thought of it and shoveled what I needed. Just kept it going for about 8 years! Then moved and got one of those rotating black barrels, I hate the thing! The open pile was lots easier and seemed to be so much faster. Good composting!
Open composters are great, easy and effective, but in colder climates they can stagnate for much of the year. I purchased a plain black plastic trash barrel with lid, drilled a few dozen holes in the base and up the the first few inches of the side. Use a couple shovels of garden dirt as a starter, place in the sunniest spot you can, turn once and a while and watch its moisture level. It has become one of the best composters I have ever used.
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