Compost bins - tips welcome!

Who'd have thought there'd be so much choice when it comes to compost bins?! I really want to invest in one. Can anyone give me any tips in which type to go for or avoid? Do those ones that you can turn work better? Will wooden ones rot? How long will it take before kitchen scraps turn into lovely compost? Any tips / opinions very gratefully received. Ta


  • hollie hockhollie hock Posts: 3,346

    I've got a darlek one as I don't have a lot of space. Did get some compost out of it last year. It's in a sunny spot and I put a mixture of paper, veg scraps and garden waste into it.

  • chicachica Posts: 252

    i have just bought one of those green plastis ones off the council and every year i get a bin of compost its behind my shed so dont get any sun i just take off lid chuck in the bits and shut it.

  • lindsay2610lindsay2610 Posts: 101
    We have a Dalek too, does the job and if you turn the compost yourself it goes even faster. Needs a good 6 months but will be just in time for spring mulching. I read the turning ones work less well as they don't have the cubic area to let it get warm enough. The larger the area (ideally at least 1m2), the hotter it will get and the faster it will do the job.
  • gab82gab82 Posts: 73
    I wonder...... which one is best traditional pallets or darlek? Have built the pallet next??to ??the darlek to experiment. Drilled some holes on my plastic compost bin to help air circulation
  • Lots of us with the dalek type bins have recently bought a 'darlac' compost turner, from amazon.  You sort of screw the end down into the compost (it's like a big corkscrew at the end), and then yank it up to turn the compost.  You need to get lots of air to it, to get it to work.  Some people add compost accelerator (bought some in Aldi last week for £4), or if you're a bloke you can drink beer and then wee on it (although I think this is an excuse used by nice next door neighbour to go & have a skinful at lunchtime and sleep it off in his shed at the allotment).  Others add a couple of nuggets of horse poo, or put in any type of poo from vegetarian pets (so no dog or cat poo), as the microbes poop contains help it rot down, all the accelerator is, is dried microbes & other nutrients.  so you can add poo from rabbits, rats, mice guinea pigs etc etc.

    Daleks tend to be cheaper than wooden ones, so unless you're a whizz at DIY and can get pallets free, I'd go for daleks.  They also tend to be smaller, so better for smaller gardens, I'd agree that three is a good idea, but lots of us just don't have the space.

    It might be worth checking your local council's website, lots of them do deals where you can buy a dalek quite cheaply.  My local council has a 'deal', but by the time you've added p&p, it was cheaper for me to buy one at JTF, £22 plus VAT.  Plus the fun I had by scaring small son thinking I was REALLY a dalek!!

  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 19,762

    MMP-and presumably there's the added advantage that they can't get up the stairs....image

    I contacted my council but they don't provide compost bins any more. A shame really as the recycling here is hopeless with so many bits and peces of bags, boxes and bins and i'm sure people would welcome easy to obtain compost bins even if they have small spaces. Think I might get a wooden ones for now so that I can add on to them once I reorganise the garden.

    to walk through a forest is to touch the past

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 43,775

    We've got two wooden ones at the end of the garden - they're in full view of the house and I prefer the look of wooden bins.  They're not fancy ones - like this but without the removable front

    I'd have got these if they'd been available at the time as shovelling the compost out of mine is a bit of a faff (good for arm muscles tho image)

    A colleague brings me occasional bags of guinea pig poo which is fantastic for getting a compost heap going - we've had some really good compost out of our bins.

    No-one knows if you've done your housework, but everyone knows if you've done your gardening !
  • TootlesTootles Posts: 1,470
    Thanks folks.
  • artjakartjak Posts: 4,168

    I have 2 daleks in semi-sun. 1 to fill and 1 to vegetate. It takes around 4 months in the summer, 6 months in the winter to make the compost. I add Garotta or similar every 4/6 inches and turn with an arrow type tool from Centre for Alternative Technology.

    Am seriously thinking of getting a wormery to deal with cooked food, fish and meat bones, and have heard that they even deal with dog poo!

    I conceal the daleks a bit with trellis and winter flowering jasmine.

  • hi i got some pallets and joined three sides together, and one fixed to the front that can be removed, i fill with scraps from the kitchen, horse poo, straw, papers , and grass cuttings , i started one lot in sept last year that was ready feb this year, turn it occasionally , its made a lovely mulch which is on the garden now,  good luck its all good fun

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