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Compost Bin

Hi All
I am looking to purchase a compost bin which MUST be vermin proof and wondered if anyone could recommend one?

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  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 37,036
    Nothing's guaranteed vermin proof, although , as @philippasmith2 says, it depends what you mean by vermin. 
    Rats can get in underneath for example, unless there's a base. That makes it a bit harder to make the compost and turn it etc.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 6,219
    https://www.gardeningdelights.com/thermo-compost-bin-komp-700/?gclid=Cj0KCQjw28T8BRDbARIsAEOMBcybs_79uD0nCxBQYqMZZIpdRO8I-1KbJYaTIV3uqJEnuCn--lPyZAsaAkNYEALw_wcB

    I have had 3 of these for nearly 20 years and they're still as good as the day they arrived. Very sturdy and nice to use because the sides completely open out making turning and digging out the contents very easy. Very efficient composters.

    At our previous house they stood on a double thickness of chicken wire but here they are on concrete slabs with a proper hard core base (and - yes - we do still get worms and all the other necessary creepy crawlies).

    In all that time I never had a problem with rats (or even mice) getting into the bins - until last year. At that point some very run down stables were 'sorted out' and we and all the neighbours had a problem with rats in the garden for a short period. A rat got into one of the bins - but he gained access from the top after the lid blew open.

    I would, therefore, say that so long as you secure the lid and make the base rodent proof -  these bins are as rodent proof as you can get.

    Big downside (as you can see) is the cost. In case you think I'm being a flash loadsa money type 😬 - I got mine from the council when they were selling them for £15 each.....
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • Hi All
    I am looking to purchase a compost bin which MUST be vermin proof and wondered if anyone could recommend one?
    Thankyou. The vermin I'm referring to are rats and mice. I think I have found the solution by siting it on the edge of a paddock and far away from the house!
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 37,036
    Mice can get through very tiny holes, and they aren't a huge problem normally. Rats are a different matter. 
    If they are problematic, a good tip is to bang the side of the compost bin on a regular basis. If they're thinking of setting up home in it, that can be enough to move them on a bit. 
    @philippasmith2 - I just noticed the final bit of your last comment
    Poor Dave is 'black affrontit' when he came for his tea  :D


    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • FireFire LondonPosts: 10,147
    I wouldn't site the bin too far away from the house or it becomes a PITA to take the compost scraps out (if you will be adding kitchen waste). This becomes esp boring in rain, cold and snow.

    If you are worried about kitchen waste attracting rodents, and or have a small garden, I personally recommend getting several regular black plastic bins with clip lids. Drill or burn drainage holes in the bottom. They are low enough to turn easily and empty one into the other. Holds in heat. Cheap. Easy (with another person) to carry to the spot where you want to empty out the finished compost. Stackable when empty. Check periodically to see if rats have chewed through the bottom (I've never had that problem). I live in London and so rats, mice and cats are never far away. Keeping everything as rodent and cat free as I can is a priority in my small garden space, living cheek by jowl with neighbours.

    If you keep three or more of these running, they will likely become part brindle womery. In which case, you can keep the bottom sixth of you finished compost (where most of  the worms live) and tip that into your new bin to start it off. You so transfer microbial, animal and fungal life, like a sour dough starter, to get things bubbling.

    Clearly, these bins won't suit a large garden with large amounts of green waste - brush, hedging, chippings, large lawns etc.




  • SkylarksSkylarks East MidlandsPosts: 363
    edited October 2020
    I picked up a square shaped 300L compost bin from Homebase for £7. It has a hinged lid that can be fully removed. It’s not particularly sturdy and I’ve put a couple of bricks on top to weight it down. 

    @Topbird, thanks for chicken wire tip. I’ll use that. 
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 6,219
    edited October 2020
    @Skylarks

    The chicken wire thing does work🙂. The secret is to overlap it to make the holes really small. For added peace of mind you could make the mesh 3 or 4 layers thick. Make sure it covers the whole of the base (I used to slightly bend mine up the outside walls for added protection).

    Chicken wire per se isn't strong enough to keep a determined rat out - but a few layers makes gnawing such an unpleasant experience that it's a very effective deterrent. Just ensure there is nothing highly attractive in the bin to make it worth their while to persist (cooked meats, dairy products etc). If you stick with garden waste, vegetable peelings, paper etc you should be ok.
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • SkylarksSkylarks East MidlandsPosts: 363
    Thanks @Topbird, I’ll give it a go   :)
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