There’s something oddly satisfying about making your own compost. Recycling your plant matter and food waste not only rids you of unnecessary garbage, but it also helps you enhance your soil’s quality. It’s very expensive to buy commercialized compost, especially when you have wide areas to cover – which is why it’s a much better idea to recycle what perishables you already have. Your soil will need it much more than the dumping grounds.
By “feeding” your soil with compost, you can expect great results when you are growing veggies, fruits, and flowers. However, the process of turning said waste into compost can be fairly time-consuming, which is why you will need a good compost bin for storing the “soil food.”
There are various reasons why you may want to start making your own compost. Sure, you can buy it – but why not gain the following advantages?
- Creating compost reduces waste, which will furthermore diminish the carbon footprint.
- Making your own compost is an easy process that anyone can do, and you can do it pretty much anywhere.
- Composting offers you rich fertilizers that improve your garden’s quality.
- Feeding compost to your soil will improve its quality even in the years to come.
- Next time, you may want to think better about throwing away those leftovers, fruit peels, or any other perishables.
- Why Do You Need a Compost Bin for That?
Many people believe that since it’s basically “trash,” they can just throw the compost in a pile in the back of their garden where they can let Mother Nature do its course. However, in order to create high-quality compost, you will need a dark environment that combines the right amounts of moisture and oxygen. Plus, you need to be very careful of the temperature.
This is why you need a compost bin. Rather than letting the compost form at the mercy of the environment, you can allow it to properly form in a correct environment, without the risk of it being compromised.
Generally, the composting will happen naturally if you just throw the waste in the bin and let nature do its course.
However, if you keep the environment slightly moist and you turn it every few weeks, the compost will be ready to use much faster.
Factors to Consider When Buying a Compost Bin
There are several factors to consider when looking for a compost bin. Some of the most important ones include the following:
Size: Do you have a limited space when it comes to storing a compost bin? Plus, if you have a wider strip of soil, you may want to look for something more spacious to store compost in.
Waste generation: Do you tend to have a lot of material to create compost, or are you not able to come up with large amounts of compostable trash on a regular basis? The larger your waste generation, the larger your compost bin has to be.
Compost type: Do you want to compost the waste in a traditional, enclosed space, or do you want to use live insects such as worms in the process?
Depending on your answers to the questions above, you may need a certain type of compost bin. For instance, if you do not have a lot of space to move around, you probably won’t benefit much from a rolling compost bin.
Types of Compost Bins
If you thought that all compost bins were the same, you might want to guess again. Depending on your space and composting process, there are several types of compost bins that you may want to choose from.
Standard (Non Tumbling) Compost Bins
Standard compost bins are the ones you are most likely to find in a garden. It’s an affordable, low-maintenance option that allows you to store small or large amounts of compost.
They generally require manual aeration, and they do not generally have any special features other than composters – which is why they are cheaper and easier to use. The only downside is that they are much more difficult to mix and aerate than other composting bins, such as a tumbler.
Best – Garden Gourmet Composter
Made from recycled plastic, this has been rated by many as the best standard bin you could have around the house. Since it’s black, it can absorb heat much easier – therefore enhancing the decomposition process and offering you compost much faster.
You have the ability to adjust the air flow by simply controlling the vent size. Plus, the peaked lid will keep any insects away from the compost – so there’s no need to worry that your future plants will suffer.
With a capacity of 11 cubic feet, you can make a decent amount of compost. Plus, it’s very easy to install and access, which makes it the ideal compost bin for those who lack the time.
- Recycled black plastic makes the waste into compost much faster
- Well-designed and easy on the eyes
- Easy to install and use
- Door that slides open at the bottom for easy access to finished compost without emptying entire bin
- Fairly pricey
- A bit small
Toughest Compost Bin – Soil Saver Classic Compost Bin
If you’re looking for a compost bin that could withstand anything, this is definitely the toughest one you could go for. Made from recycled material, this bin has a sturdy construction and a thickness that will keep it going through generations.
The thickness doesn’t only improve its durability, but its performance as well. The construction acts as insulation, which means that the heat will be kept in – therefore allowing the micro-organisms to break down the compost much faster.
This compost bin also features a self-watering lid that can be locked to keep any critters out. Plus, the bin features openings that will allow for the air to flow – therefore improving the speed of the composting process.
Easy to use
Construction is very sturdy
It successfully seals all decomposing smells inside the bin
Multiple bottom sliding doors for easy access to finished compost
Price is a little high
It doesn’t have a bottom, so you can’t use it indoors
Spring Gardener Wire Composter
If you are looking for a wired, exposed compost bin rather than one that seals all the waste, then you may want to consider the Spring Gardener compost bin. It will offer you superior aeration, as well as a large capacity.
Considering that it doesn’t have any complicated extras, installing this unit is very simple. All you have to do is unfold the panels, attach the waterproof cover, and you’re good to go.
With this unit, you can make around 15 cubic feet of compost. Plus, the design is so versatile that you can even use it as animal housing (for rabbits, puppies, and so on).
Waterproof cover that prevents the compost from getting rained on
Anyone can see your compost
Doesn’t offer much insulation
Gardeners Deluxe Pyramid Composter
If you’re looking for a compost bin with an extra kick in capacity, you might want to give the Deluxe Pyramid a try. Holding 12 cubic feet of compost, it’s perfect if you have a lot of compost to handle.
Made from dark eco-friendly plastic, this bin has superior heat-retaining properties. Furthermore, it offers great aeration thanks to the multiple narrow side vents. The two sliding doors also make adding and removing compost an easy process.
The design is also attractive. It may be made from plastic, but from afar, it gives off a dark wood impression. It will be a great accessory for your garden.
Easy to use
Some users claim that the lid is difficult to close
Clean Air Gardening Big Round Compost Bin
Those who are tired of boxy designs might want to give this round bin a try. Not only does it have an intriguing design, but it is also spacious enough to hold 18 cubic feet worth of compost – making it one of the widest bins so far.
The slits found at the base will allow for the air to flow, aiding in the decomposition of the waste. Plus, the smart door position allows you to easily reach the compost at the base – which is actually the richest one. All you have to do is take off the nuts.
The compost bin comes with an instruction manual, but overall, it’s very easy to use. Plus, it will take only fifteen minutes to assemble, which means that you can start composting very soon.
Smart and beautiful design
Plastic is reported to be wobbly
It doesn’t have a bottom to be used indoors
Geobin Compost Bin
Sometimes, size really matters – and when you have a lot of waste for composting, you need all the space that you can get. This is exactly why a 216-gallon compost bin would seem like it was sent from the heavens.
This bin is easily assembled since all you have to do is snap the closure keys. When not in use, all you have to do is roll it, and you can easily move it around. The fact that it’s extra lightweight is also an advantage.
Having numerous holes on its entire surface, this compost bin offers excellent ventilation. This way, your compost will be ready to use much faster – and you may take it directly from the bottom access trap. That will be the place where the darkest and richest compost will gather.
Lightweight and easy to set up
Equipped with a lid
Very sturdy when it’s full
Not very sturdy when it’s empty
WC Redmon Culture Compost Bin
This compost bin is perfect for those who are looking for something easy to operate and that doesn’t use much space. With a capacity of 65 gallons (8.6 cubic feet), it can hold a decent amount that is not too big, nor too large.
This bin is equipped with an easy to use lift-off lid that allows you to put waste compost in at any time. Plus, the ventilation holes placed strategically on all sides will allow for good ventilation – therefore leading to quick decomposition.
Made from water-resistant plastic, this unit is great if you need something to withstand harsh weather (regardless if it is rain or strong UV rays). Plus, each side has a bottom door access that will allow you access to the compost at any time.
Easy to use
The lid may not be very secure in windy conditions
Plastic may crack in temperatures below 15 degrees
Clean Air Gardening Cedar Compost Bin
Unlike most compost bins that are made of plastic, this one uses white cedar wood that has been treated to resist all kinds of weather conditions. Not only does it have a sturdy structure, but it’s also easy on the eyes thanks to the wood construction.
The side slants offer great aeration, enabling the proper decomposition of the compost. It can hold around 22 cubic feet of compost – which is overall very easy to load. Plus, the wide top offers easy operation if you want to turn the compost material.
It may not have a lid, but this should not pose a problem as long as it is not placed in a very exposed area. Plus, this will only help in the aeration process – which will, in turn, lead to a quicker decomposition.
Great for those who like wood structures
Easy to use and effective
Doesn’t have a lid
Tumbling Compost Bins
Also known as a “turning” compost bin, this type of bin is basically a barrel that is equipped with a crank that allows you to easily turn the materials. This will offer a better and faster composting of the materials since you can easily turn everything every two or four weeks. Keep in mind that once you put waste in this type of bin, you won’t be able to add more until the entire mix has finished composting.
The downside of these compost bins is that they are much smaller than standard bins, which might prove inconvenient if you have larger soil stripes to cover. Furthermore, they are more expensive, which is why you will need a bigger budget if you want such a compost bin.
Best – Spin Bin Tumbling Compost Bin
If you’re looking for something effective but also affordable, this unit provides great value for the money. With its 60-gallon capacity, you can have a decent amount of compost in no time.
The materials from which this unit was made are of superior quality that can resist almost any type of bad weather. Its steel legs will make sure the tumbling device stays in place, even when it’s not fully loaded.
Furthermore, the tumbler has a total of 20 ventilation slots and a ribbed interior that allows for superior air ventilation. You’ll have dark, rich compost in no time.
Great value for the price
Fairly time consuming to assemble
Yimby Tumbler Composter
This tumbler composter is a good acquisition for those who are on a budget. For a fairly low price, you get a composter bin that can offer you high-quality compost in as little as two years.
Another great extra for this composter is that it provides two chambers. The separate opening traps will allow you to take from the first side while permitting the second one to finish composting.
The tumbler also features superior aeration thanks to the holes’ position on the entire surface of the tumbler. Plus, considering that it can hold 37 gallons of compost, you get a decent amount with each round.
Difficulties in assembling
Might leak compost
Mantis Compact Composter Bin
Thanks to the fact that it has an enclosed design, this tumbler will not allow for odors to leak out, and the drainage vents prevent the compost from escaping.
The tumbler was designed with several air vents to permit decent aeration, providing you a good amount of high-quality compost in just about three weeks. Plus, its design is attractive and will work well as a decorative item in your back garden.
With a capacity of 88 gallons, this unit is fairly spacious. It is also very easy to load since all you will have to do is release the screws of the main trap.
Fairly well aerated considering that it’s enclosed
May not be as durable
Gardener’s Supply Compost Tumbler
This easy-to-use compost tumbler is great for those who do not have a lot of time on their hands. Made entirely from recycled material, not only is it eco-friendly, but it also has a fairly durable construction. It’s sturdy even when it has been previously emptied.
With a capacity of 43 gallons, this might not be one of the largest capacity tumblers out there; however, its compact form will allow for the compost to finish in a short amount of time.
This tumbler has a large door, so filling and emptying it is an easy task. It’s also well-aerated, and the fact that it’s enclosed does not allow for animals or insects to get in the compost.
Easy to Use
Turner cannot be locked in place
Lifetime Compost Tumbler
With its 80-gallon capacity, this product is fairly large for a tumbler. Made from high-density black polyethylene, this unit is great for attracting and retaining heat, allowing the compost to form much faster.
This unit is equipped with an internal bar that mixes the compost when you turn it. The rotation is balanced, which means that there will be no chances for the tumbler to move from its place.
The legs are made of galvanized steel, which ensures its durability. It also makes the tumbler very stable, and very resistant to all kinds of weather conditions.
Made from heavy-duty materials
Easy to use
Quite difficult to install
Dual Chamber Tumbling Compost Bins
These compost bins are similar to regular compost, aside from the obvious extra: instead of one chamber, you have two of them. This way, you can add new waste to compost without having to remove the previous batch. No more leaving compost material in a pile next to the bin.
You will, however, need a much bigger storage space for this one, since you’ll basically have two tumbling bins. They are also much more expensive than regular tumblers, due to the fact that they provide more compost.
Best – Good Ideas Compost Wizard Duel Composter Bin
Most tumblers are held up by legs, which can be very unstable – especially after a certain time has passed. However, since this one is placed on a plastic base that allows rotation, it is much more stable than your average tumbler.
This tumbler can hold up to 5 gallons of compost, having a total of 3.5 cubic feet per chamber. Arriving fully-assembled and requiring low maintenance, it’s a great option for those who have little time to spare.
Its compact form allows you to use this unit both indoors and outdoors. Plus, the side holes offer good ventilation, which will lead to fast decomposition.
No assembly required
Easy to use
Openings are small
Very small capacity
Exaco Trading Mr. Spin Compost Tumbler
This dual-chamber composter is a great thing for your garden if you have a lot of compost to handle. By having two compartments, you can add new organic waste separately, without messing with the old batch.
This compact tumbler is perfect if you do not have a lot of garden space. With a capacity of 40 gallons, it’s enough to provide compost for small to medium soil strips.
It’s very easy to use, and the tumbler rotates based on a central shaft. Plus, the fact that it’s made entirely from eco-friendly plastic makes it one of the best tumblers you could go for.
Made from eco-friendly materials
Easy to use
Works as advertised
Doors are smaller than expected
It gets difficult to turn if you add a lot of compost
Miracle Grow Dual Compost Tumbler
Unlike most tumblers whose chambers rotate simultaneously, this one can be activated separately. This way, you can add compost at different times and turn it without worrying that you mess with the decomposition of the first batch.
Each container can hold a total of 27 gallons, which means you get a decent amount of compost, although it’s on the small side. Plus, it’s well-aerated, so depending on the compost, you can get yours in as little as six weeks.
Made from heavy-duty recycled polypropylene, this unit is perfect for year-round composting.
Easy to use
Separate chamber activation
The capacity per chamber is rather small
Hotfrog Dual Body Tumbling Composter
Many people consider this the best composter for several reasons: it’s fairly spacious, yet compact, it’s very easy to use, and it offers excellent aeration. Holding 37 gallons of compost, this model is larger than most of its kind.
This tumbler is made from recycled polyethylene that is fully resistant to harmful UV rays. At the same time, it can properly retain the heat needed to aid in the decomposition of the organic waste.
This composter features several aeration holes that will offer superior aeration. Plus, it has an interesting design that will mix well with any garden. It does not come with separate instructions, but as long as you know your way around a set of screws, it should not pose a problem.
Great price-quality ratio
Easy to assemble
Easy to use
Coating may start scraping off
Does not come with instructions
Chambers a bit small
Gardeners Compost Twin
With a capacity of almost 30 gallons, this is by far one of the largest dual tumblers out there. You can easily allow one side to “cook” while you add organic waste in the other compartment.
The construction is very sturdy, so this unit is suitable for year-round use. Plus, it has excellent aeration properties, so the compost can be ready in as little as two weeks (although that will also depend on the waste that you use).
This tumbler’s design is slightly more attractive than most other compost bins, which would make it a great decoration for your garden as well.
Very large capacity
Keeps animals out
May be difficult to assemble if you don’t have the tools
Worm Compost Bins
Composting can be achieved much faster by using red earthworms, also referred to as “composting worms.” Basically, the worms eat the waste and “replace” it with droppings referred to as worm cast. Once they have eaten through the waste, the worms will move on and you may use said waste to feed your plants.
The advantage of these types of compost bins is that you may use them outside. The disadvantage is that you can’t compost more than one pound per week and that you have to be extra careful that the worms are kept at a certain temperature (between 50 and 80 degrees).
Best – Nature’s Footprint Worm Factory 360 Worm Composter
The Worm Factory 360 is one of the largest worm composters out there, which is why many people consider it to be the best compost bin of this kind. Built in a “worm tea” style, this unit features 8 trays that allow you to make different batches of compost at different times.
Each tray can hold almost 13 pounds of compost, which means that you get a decent amount at every turn. Plus, the unit is odorless, making it the perfect unit to use indoors.
This worm compost bin is also expandable, so you can make as much compost as you want. The fabric from which it was made is also thick, which will help in maintaining a constant temperature – this is something you need to consider if you care about the worms.
The expandable design allows you to create as much compost as you want
Ventilation could be worked on
Fruit flies may pose a problem
Worms may find their way out through the bottom tray
VermiHut 5-Tray Compost Bin
This worm compost bin is also a suitable choice for indoor compost making. Considering that it has a very small footprint, you will not need a large space for this bin. You may use it even if you live in a smaller house.
This compost bin is odorless, which means that you can safely store it indoors, without worrying that the decomposition will start smelling in the house. Plus, it’s low maintenance, and all you have to do is move the tray every now and again.
The VermiHut bin features 5 trays, each of them measuring 11.25 inches width and 5 inches debt. Furthermore, it’s one of the best worm trays for those on a budget, since it comes at a fairly cheap price.
Great air circulation
Doesn’t have much protection against fruit flies
Contents could leak if not properly set up
UrbAlive Vermicomposter Worm Farm Compost Bin
If you want something with a more intriguing design, you may want to give the UrbAlive a try. It will really bring your house alive, mainly due to the fact that it looks like an abstract, colorful work of art.
The Vermicomposter has a total of three layers where you can add your compost and worms. Once the worms are done with one layer, they will move to the other one, allowing you to use the finalized compost.
This worm compost bin is very easy to install, as long as you follow the provided step-by-step instructions. Plus, since it is fairly compact in size, it is appropriate for use even if you live in an apartment.
Fun modern European design
Easy to operate and install
It may release odors
Indoor Compost Scrap Collector
Some people may not have a yard, but still want to make compost in their own home for their potted plants. This is why they opt for an indoor compost scrap collector since it allows them to make said compost from the waste they gather from their kitchen.
The downside is that these compost bins don’t have a very big capacity, which is why they might not be of much use to you if you have many large plants around the house. Plus, they can be rather expensive, especially if you go for the electric versions.
Best Metal Design – Epica Stainless Steel Compost Collector
Many people regard this as the compost collector with the best metal design. Not only does it promise a long durability, but it is also fairly fancy to look at. You wouldn’t know that it’s actually a place for organic waste by looking at it.
Since it only has a 1 gallon capacity, you can practically put it anywhere. It doesn’t take up much counter space, and you can easily move it around whenever you need to empty it.
The lid is closed airtight, and it also comes with charcoal filters that will keep the odors from escaping. You can clean these filters with water and soap, or you can change them with the replacements provided.
Compact in size
Comes with extra carbon filters
It may be small if you have continuous organic scrap to discard
Best Design – Sure Close Kitchen Composter
If you’re the kind of person that gets annoyed each time the lid does not want to close, then this kitchen composter is definitely up your alley. It’s called “sure close” for a reason since you have to click the hinge to open and close it – which is why it was voted as the scrap holder with the best design by many people.
This compost collector has smooth insides that make it very easy to clean. Plus, the patented airflow offers proper ventilation – which means that you can also use it to create small amounts of compost. This way, you won’t necessarily have to purchase a larger unit.
The Sure Close comes with air filters that will not only keep the insects out but will also maintain the smells in. Plus, the swinging handle has a lip grip, which enhances its usability as well.
Lid can’t be accidentally cracked open
Easy to use and clean
Compact and easy to fit in small places, such as under a sink
Doesn’t offer many color options
It still lets smells get out every now and again
Exaco Kitchen Compost Waste Collector
This may look like a trash can – still, it’s anything but. This tool allows you to collect the garbage from your kitchen and carry it to your outdoor composer at all times – without worrying that you will make a mess on the way.
Made from high-density polyethylene, this waste collector promises a long life, and you may definitely use it for several years. Plus, considering that it has a 2.4-gallon capacity, you can collect a lot before taking it to the composter.
You shouldn’t worry that the waste will start to smell. This collector includes carbon filters that will trap the odors in, preventing any of the “stinkies” from coming out. Plus, you get filter replacements, in case the old one stops working.
The filters stop the odors from coming out
The plastic clips allow you to attach a garbage bag
The lid has difficulties in staying up
The air filter may fall off if you’re not careful
Goldsol Countertop Scrap Container
Those running low of space might prefer a container that they could put on a countertop rather than a full-sized floor one. That’s why this 1-gallon compost scrap collector may seem like something sent from the heavens.
Made from stainless steel, this is a durable product that will resist rust and time deterioration. Plus, the copper coating will not only enhance that durability but will also add an air of elegance.
The seal of this container is airtight – which means that no odor will escape the bin. Plus, it comes with a lifetime guarantee, which further speaks about the durability and efficiency of this product.
Made from durable materials
Compact, perfect for small places
Won’t be of much use if you get a lot of organic waste
No instructions for first-time composters
Tenby Living Kitchen Counter Scrap Collector
Some people like their home appliances to be nice and lively, which is why a scrap collector that looks like a plant on the counter might seem like a very attractive deal. Available in green and orange, these two will definitely liven up every kitchen.
The size of this scrap collector is perfect. It’s not too large, and therefore it can fit on the counter. At the same time, it’s not too small either, since it can contain a decent amount of waste.
This compost bin features a tightly fitted lid that will keep any odor from escaping. At the same time, it has an automated disk that allows you to push out the liquids – therefore preventing fruit flies.
Easy to carry
Fun and lively design
The handle is rather sensible and easily broken
Norpro Ceramic Compost Keeper
If you are one of those people that prefer ceramic over everything else, then this compost keeper should definitely be on your wishlist. The advantage of these ceramic pots is that they will live up to the next generations if they are well-maintained.
Having a nice design and made in three different colors (red, black and white), this compost keeper would look great on any kitchen counter. Plus, the sturdy stainless steel handle is just as durable and able to withstand heavy use.
You can store up to one gallon of compost, and you also have odor-preventing filters that can last as long as 6 months before they require changing. Plus, it’s easy to transport when you want to move the compost to a bigger bin.
Highly durable material
If you drop it, you break it
Composting requires a lot of dirty work – pun intended – which is why you need to have as many tools as possible to make the job easier. Most of the time, this tool is a compost turner (also known as an aerator). They are used to turn the compost, mixing it so that it gets aerated properly.
Orbis Compost Turner
Compost turners are a necessity if you have a standard composter and you don’t want to dig through the compost with your own hands – which is why this compost turner would be such a great purchase.
Made from lightweight material, this tool is very easy to use. It’s also made from a very durable material, which means that it’s perfect for regular use throughout the year. The handle also has a soft, foamy cushion that will make it comfortable for you to operate the turner.
It works perfectly with any composter – especially the ones that have a very large capacity. It would be the perfect thing
to offer someone who is a gardening enthusiast and already has a compost bin.
Cushioned handle increases comfort
Compatible with any composter
Easy to use
May develop rust at some point
Reln Garden Compost Aerator
This compost aerator is a great tool for every gardener due to the fact that it’s so unique. Its spiral end will enable you to grab onto the compost more efficiently, turning it so that it gets aerated much easier and faster.
The galvanized steel finish ensures increased durability since it is not prone to getting rusty. Plus, it’s not easily bent either, so you can use it even on large amounts of compost.
The plastic handle offers better grip on the aerator, which will add to your comfort while using it. Plus, the tool is very lightweight, so you will not have any difficulties operating the bin. It will also be very easy to move and store once you finished working on your compost.
Lightweight and can be easily operated or carried around
Made from sturdy materials
Efficient and time-saving
Continuously turning the aerator may be tiresome
Yard Butler Compost Aerator
This compost aerator is effective in the sense that it works just like a harpoon. The folding wings will unfold once they reach the bottom of the pile, and they will grab onto the compost, turning it around.
Made entirely from steel, this tool is durable as it can be. Plus, the soft handle is comfortable as you are using it; this makes the process even more pleasant. The compost aerator also features a lifetime guarantee, which further speaks of its durability. It’s the perfect tool to have around when you need to aerate your compost.
Perfect for enclosed compost bins
Easy to use
It’s mostly effective only when the compost has already reached its final stages
Wings can sometimes get stuck and not open properly
Lotech Compost Crank Twist Aerator
If you dislike lifting or turning, this handcrafted compost aerator is the perfect addition to your tool shed. Made from highly durable stainless steel, this compost turner will allow you to spiral through the compost, and pull it up to let the air in.
This tool can reach as far as 29 inches, so it’s perfect even if you have a large amount of compost. Plus, it’s made entirely from recycled materials, so it’s perfect for the environmentally-friendly maniac in everyone.
Easy to use
Durable construction made from stainless steel
Easy to clean
Can reach even into deep piles
The amount you can pull up is relatively small
Sometimes it can be difficult to pull back up
Composting is a great way to make use of waste that you would have otherwise thrown away into the garbage bin. This way, you can use your organic waste for the greater good and improve the quality of your soil. And by just adding it into a compost bin, you will provide the right environment – without letting the entire world see your “trash.”
It’s not easy to choose the best compost bin – but hopefully, this guide offered you some insight in order to make the process easier.
Looking for the best composter to buy? There isn’t a single “best” composter, but there are several top choices for various categories for sale, depending on your personal needs.
You don’t have to use a composter at all to make compost, if you’re low on cash. You can make a simple compost pile, or use a method like trench composting. Those methods work perfectly fine, and I encourage you to use them if you can’t afford a composter.
There are also plenty of options for building your own composter.
I do like using a compost bin though, because it keeps your compost all together in one spot, and helps keeps pests (or pets!) out of the materials you are trying to compost. Below are several composters that I recommend. They all work well, and you’ll probably want to choose one of these compost bins to buy based on your own specific needs and preferences.
Spin Bin Compost Tumbler
The advantage to composting with a tumbler is less hands on effort. You do not need to mix with an aerating tool or pitch fork. Simply give it a tumble each time you add to it, or once a week. The Spin Bin composter has 20 ventilation slots which allow much needed oxygen to help break down your material quicker. Four thermometer ports allow you to check the temperature without having to open the lid and sticking your arm into the tumbler. Made from 100 percent recycled plastic, it has a 60 gallon capacity and dual lids, which allow you to open on either side to fill. The cost is around $129. There are several bigger compost tumblers on the market, but they can cost hundreds of dollars, so this one gives you more bang for your buck, in my opinion. See the Spin Bin composter online here and also here.
Best Wire Compost Bin
Bosmere Wire Compost Bin
A lot of people try to build their own composters out of chicken wire. Those work, but they are really flexible, and they fall apart pretty quickly, because chicken wire isn’t sturdy enough for serious composting. This wire compost bin is made from thicker metal. It has a large capacity of 18.75 cubic feet, or 225 gallons. So you’ll have plenty of room for leaves or grass clippings. The cost is around $49. See it here.
Best Wood Compost Bin
Cedar Compost Bin
This cedar composting bin is simple and functional. The cedar wood frame will hold up for years and allows for great air circulation as well as keeping pests from digging in your compost. It costs approximately $159. See it here.
Best Plastic Compost Bin
Gardenwise Plastic Compost Bin
Plastic, stationary bins are less expensive than tumblers but smaller than most wire or cedar bins. The advantage is their ease of use. Each side has a door at the bottom giving access to your finished compost. Unlike other plastic bins that sometimes just snap together and aren’t always sturdy, this recycled plastic compost bin is kept secure with 4 nuts and bolts on each corner. It is well-ventilated, and the top fits securely, keeping small animals from trying to get a midnight snack. At 12 cubic feet of space, you still have ample room to add a bag or two of leaves, grass clippings and kitchen waste. The lid could be better designed, but it’s good enough. The dimensions are 33″ h x 28.5″ w x 28.5″ d. It costs approximately $100.
Best Plastic Worm Bin
Can O Worms Round Vermicomposter
The Can O Worms might be the most popular vermicomposting bin on the market. It can be used either indoors or outdoors. The round shape allows it to sit in corner of a room virtually unnoticed, and the fly proof lid keeps unwanted pests from entering or exiting. This worm bin includes two worm trays and a liquid nesting tray that the legs attach to. There is also a valve to drain the valuable liquid (worm tea), which can be diluted and applied to plants as a fertilizer. Assembled it stands 25.6″ high and has a 20.07″ diameter. The cost is around $100.
Best Wooden Worm Bin
Cedar Red Worm Vermicomposting Box
For our more serious worm enthusiast, the Cedar worm bin allows you to take vermicomposting to the next level. At 48” long, 24” wide and 21” high, you can add more kitchen scraps than with a standard sized plastic worm bin. This unit is designed for outdoors, and the cedar wood is ideal to withstand harsh climates and last for years. Some assembly is required, so be prepared to spend 15 to 20 minutes putting it together. An optional instructional DVD can be added to your order that has extremely detailed info on putting it together, as well as instructions on how to compost with worms. The cost is around $90.
Best Countertop Compost Pail
A countertop pail allows for fewer trips from the kitchen to the compost bin and the 1 gallon size takes little space on your counter top. This stainless steel pail looks great on any counter and is dishwasher safe. Holding 1 gallon of material, the average household can go days before needing to empty it in your bin. Odors are not an issue due to the dual carbon filter that is contained inside the vented lid of the compost pail. The cost is around $22. If that’s too rich for your taste, you can always just use a coffee can or a Tupperware container instead, because those options are free! See it here.
Best Compost Thermometer
If you’re not sure how well your compost is doing a compost thermometer is a surefire way to check its condition. Unlike other composting thermometers, this easy-to-read dial tell you if you are low, medium or hot. The shaft is 20” long, which enables you to probe deep into your compost materials. The all stainless steel construction should last for years, and the no-fog lens means it will not cloud up on you like other cheaper models. Do you need it? No. But is it fun to measure the temperature in your bin? Oh yeah! See it here.
8 thoughts on “Buyer’s Guide: Best Composters Reviewed”
This is a very usefull article. I have a spin tumbler myself and I just love it. It composts much faster and is much easier to turn over than the bin type.
Just thinking of ways to make extra money, wondering if there is any demand for compost in large bulk for local landscape companies or vegtable farmers.
@Mike, Yes, but you may find the amount of material you would need to supply someone with compost is rather large, on a scale that would require heavy machinery, and trucks to bring in the material. It would be tough to compete with companies who have such equipment but you may be able to figure something out. Contact a few and see if there is a demand, then go from there. Good Luck!
Very pertinent and informative post about selecting best composter for your garden.
@mike. yes you can make money selling the compost you make. i live in a gated retirement community, and can’t make enough. and these are patio gardners. if you make it , you can sure sell it. lots of luck.
is bread a composting material?
Everything I’ve read says NO.
I notice you do not have any electric ones. My electric one failed the first year and has been sitting in the garage for years.