Starting your own indoor compost bin ranks on the easier side of home projects. All you’ll need is a suitable compost bin and all those food scraps from the kitchen that would normally go to waste. Time and nature take care of the rest.
Knowing how to keep a well-balanced compost bin will be your first line of defense in creating a bin that has little to no smell. Adding items to the compost bin that certainly shouldn’t be there, or adding the wrong balance of organic materials, will create an unpleasant odor that could make indoor composting impossible.Your compost bin needs five major components: Greens, browns, water, air, and soil.
Example of Greens: could use veggie leftovers, fruit waste like apple cores and banana peels, eggshells and even old bread. Anything , as long as it’s somehow plant-based. Animal products like meat and dairy should be kept out of the bin, as those will immediately lead to a smell.
Example of browns:anything carbon-rich, like coffee grounds, tea leaves, dry grass/leaves and untreated paper (like coffee filters). A general rule is a 2:1 green to brown ratio, but ratio estimates vary dramatically. If your pile is slimy, add more browns. If your pile is dry and slow to compost, add more greens.
Example of water: should be slightly damp, but not soaking, to the touch. Usually, kitchen scraps can keep this level of moisture, but you should check to make sure the compost pile isn’t drying out. Spray with water if the pile is dry.
Example of air: allow aerobic breakdown of the scraps in a way that doesn’t lead to a foul odor. Estimates vary for when you should turn your compost pile, but a general estimate is that you should turn it once or twice per week for decent aeration.
Example of soil:You’ll only need one scoop from outdoor dirt.
Follow our simple directions to create a compost bin that can turn everyday waste into fertile soil for your garden or indoor plants.
- Sealable container
- ¼-inch drill bit
- Charcoal air filter (optional)
- Tape or glue
- Decorative scrapbook paper
- Locate a sealable container you can use as a kitchen compost bin. Coffee containers, metal tins, plastic ice cream containers and small buckets all make great options
- Clean out your container with Dawn Ultra Dish Soap and water
- Use your drill and ¼-inch drill bit to create a series of holes in the lid of the container to allow air to circulate
- Measure the height and circumference of your container, and use scissors to cut scrapbook paper to the appropriate dimensions. Wrap the scrapbook paper around the container and glue or tape in place
- Store your compost bin somewhere you’ll remember to fill it, like under the kitchen sink or in a closet, cabinet, pantry or garage. Every other day, give it a shake or a stir to help circulate air
BEST MATERIALS FOR COMPOST
- Paper towel rolls
- Egg shells
- Nut shells
- Seafood shells
- Coffee grounds
- Pencil shavings
- Old spices
- Stale bread
- Tea bags and grounds
- Fruit and vegetable peels
- Shredded paper: napkins, mail, tissues, newspaper and paper towels
Ideas to use your compost by freshening up your garden from flowers to shrubs, mix your compost into the soil that surrounds the base of plants in your garden. Also you can use your compost to feed your houseplants. Provide a fresh dose of nutrients for houseplants by blending compost into the top 1-2 inches of soil. Flower boxes, hanging flowers and patio plants can also benefit.