Composting is not difficult or expensive to do, but like any chore, there are various tools and equipment which can make things easier. Knowing each of those items and how they fit into the composting process can help you get started much more quickly, and have better results faster, too.
Technically, where composting is concerned, the only required item is space for your compost pile. Although this not exactly a tool or piece of equipment, it is listed here since it is a primary necessity when composting.
Where is a Good Location for a Compost Pile
The area you choose to do your composting in will be used for many months, and often for years. So selecting well from the start is an important step to successful composting.
Choose a composting site which can be easily reached by you as needed, and is not obstructed or boxed in by other things.
The location should also be out of the way somewhat, such as in the back corner of a yard. This way you don’t have to worry about children tripping over the compost pile or playing in it over the years.
If possible, select a composting location which isn’t too shady or sunny. Your compost pile will need the heat from the sun, but it also needs to be able to stay moist.
Consequently, too much shade will make heat generation difficult and too much sun may make the compost pile too dry.
Which Type of Compost Bin is Best
Technically, an actual bin or container is not needed to create compost, but some sort of structure that helps the pile remain contained is necessary.
Making a box like structure using three wooden pallets is an easy and inexpensive way to create a compost bin, or you can buy a large plastic storage bin from your local discount store and simply remove the bottom from it.
Alternatively, of course, you can buy commercial compost bins as well.
Many experienced composters prefer to have two to three compost bins or piles going at once. This allows you to use finished compost from the first while adding fresh materials to the second or third.
Try not to take on too much at first, though. Most beginners are better off starting with a small setup and growing it as they become more comfortable and knowledgeable with the process.
Any type of thermometer can generally be used, but it is best to dedicate one to your compost pile if you plan to use it.
Composting works best when the compost pile reaches and maintains certain temperature levels, so having a thermometer can be useful when the experience is new to you.
Fork for Turning Compost
Garden forks are excellent to use for a variety of purposes in the garden, and they make great tools for turning and mixing a compost pile – particularly when the pile is large.
If you’re using a commercial compost bin which has turning capabilities built in, or you choose to do the no turn composting method, the garden fork may be an optional tool.
Other Smaller Bins
Additional containers come in handy when you’re harvesting your compost, but they can be useful for micromanaging your compost pile as well.
For example, if you want to sort your compost materials and feed them in at various times based on the needs of your pile, then these smaller bins can be handy for that too.