Picture of 2 Bin Compost Corral
Use landscape timbers and rebar to create a sturdy 2 bin compost system. Use it to collect yard waste and save you valuable trips to the landfill. You can save time, gas and have great compost to use in the garden afterward.
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Step 1: Tools & Materials

Picture of Tools & Materials
Before beginning its best to make sure you have the necessary tools to get the job done. These are all the tools that I used to build and install the compost corral. Everything is pretty self-explanatory at this point.

As far as materials are concerned, I purchased 19 8-foot landscape timbers, 6 4-foot sections of rebar, and 6 concrete footers. The total price came to about $240. I know this is pricey and this corral is probably over built. Taking into account the time, gas and money saved having to take a truck down to landfill every time we bag our grass clippings or cut some branches, I think it is worth it.

Step 2: Site Preparation

Picture of Site Preparation
You will want to find or make level ground in an area of 8 foot by 4 foot. Remove any debris, gravel, etc until you have reached bare ground. Dig and rake the ground until it is level. Think about the placement of the compost corral so that it is convenient to use and out of sight. We installed ours close to the house but made sure to maintain at least 6 inches between the compost corral and the siding to allow for air flow and prevent mold. We'll see how well that works.
pfred22 years ago
That's not a mulch pile, now this is a mulch pile!
void_main2 years ago
I love this design with steel rods and use similar one for years now.
I like your 'footers' over regular concrete blocks better.
In my case, since the "composter corral" is much larger, I can disassemble it an move it to a new location every year.
Check this out:
primitive21 (author)  void_main2 years ago
The ability to disassemble and reassemble this system is certainly a major feature. I think that three people could actually pick this up and move it no problem.

The video you shared definitely helped me brainstorm ideas for this project.

Thanks for your comment. Happy composting.
Back when I used to use bins I came up with really nice movable ones. I made them out of EMT and chicken wire. Here are some pictures
They look a little nicer than using pallets, but they probably took 10x as long to make.

Also, those sticks probably aren't going to compost. Have you composted sticks that big in the past? I'd be surprised if they composted.
Sticks allow some air flow in the pile. You sift them out and keep on tossing them back and they break down eventually.
I compost sticks like this a lot! (though I usually use as kindling for our firepit) -- they take about a year, but they definitely go.

This is a great compost bin! I would totally do this if I didn't already have a fairly nice one built already (about the same dimentions though with planks).

My concern is how close to the house it is! For compost to work well, it needs moisture. For house foundations to last, it needs to keep moisture away. I also have no idea if a compost bin would attract termites/ants/other pests. I guess I would just be careful with that. I keep my big bin about 40 feet from the house. We also compost food, paper towels, our pet birds' waste, etc., so I don't always have enough yard greens to keep it pretty and covered :)

Would be great to update this if the house proximity becomes an issue.
primitive21 (author)  drewSaysGoVeg2 years ago
The build time on this was about 7 hours. I'm not sure how long it takes to build compost bins with pallets though it probably doesn't take that long. This design is definitely more robust and will last longer, which will save time in the end.

Any organic material will compost given enough time and the right conditions. Anything 2" in diameter and above I find another place for just so that everything composts at more or less the same rate. We will be experimenting with how we can accelerate the process.

Thanks for your comment.
zap19982 years ago
Nice work. That is a very robust design and looks to be an easy build.
This is great! This project is totally scalable too. Thanks for the share.