How to create your own backyard composting bin (Step-by-Step Guide)

Written By Mehak Kashif

April 1, 2023

Composting is an easy solution to reduce waste, save money, and promote a healthier environment. By composting your food scraps and yard waste, you can create a rich and nutritious soil amendment that will improve the health of your garden and landscape. With a backyard composting bin, it’s easy and convenient to recycle your organic waste in your yard. 

This step-by-step guide will help you to learn how to create your composting bin, so you can start composting today!

How to create your own backyard composting bin (Step-by-Step Guide)

To create a backyard composting bin, follow the below steps. Following these steps correctly, you can create a perfect backyard composting bin even with basic skills.

Step 1: Gather Materials

Materials you will need:

  • A large plastic bin or container with a lid
  • A drill
  • Screws
  • A saw
  • Wood boards
  • Scrap wood
  • A measuring tape
  • Sandpaper

Step 2: Cut the Wood

Measure the sides of the bin and cut the wood boards to size. Cut a piece of scrap wood to the same height as the bin to create a back support.

Step 3: Drill Holes

After that, take the drill machine and holes in the bin’s bottom and sides for air circulation. Make sure the holes are big enough for air to circulate easily.

Step 4: Assemble the Frame

Assemble the frame using screws. Attach the back support to the bottom of the bin and the side pieces to the back support.

Step 5: Sand and Paint

Sand the wood to remove rough spots and ensure a smooth surface. Paint the frame to protect it from the elements and give it a finished look.

Step 6: Attach the Bin

Attach the bin to the frame using screws. Make sure it is securely attached.

Step 7: Add Composting Materials

Fill the bin with composting materials, including food scraps, yard waste, and dry leaves. Make sure to add a layer of dry leaves or grass clippings to help maintain the proper balance of moisture and air.

Step 8: Maintain the Compost

Add composting materials regularly and turn the pile every few weeks to help it break down faster. Ensure you Keep the compost moist but not soaking wet.

Step 9: Harvest the Compost

In about 6-12 months, the compost will be ready to use. Simply remove the compost from the bin and use it in your garden or plants.

Your backyard composting bin is now complete! By composting, you are reducing waste, creating natural fertilizer for your plants, and helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

How much does it cost me to create a backyard composting bin?

The cost of making a backyard composting bin can vary depending on the materials and tools used. On average, the cost can range from $50 to $200. A simple compost bin can be made using materials like wood pallets or wire mesh, costing around $50 to $100. 

A more complex bin made with a sturdy material like cedar wood or recycled plastic can cost upwards of $200. The cost will also depend on whether you have the necessary tools and materials or need to purchase them.

Frequently Asked Questions

How big should my composting bin be for optimal composting?

A compost bin 3-5 cubic feet in size is optimal for most household composting needs. This size allows enough space to turn and mix the compost while still fitting it in a convenient location in your yard. Consider larger or multiple bins if you have a larger yard or generate a lot of compostable materials.

What are the best materials to put in my compost bin?

The best materials for composting include fruit and vegetable scraps, coffee grounds, eggshells, yard waste, and leaves. Avoid adding meat, dairy, oils, and processed foods. A balance of green and brown materials, such as grass clippings and dry leaves, is vital for proper composting conditions. Keep the compost moist and stir regularly to ensure decomposition.

How often should I turn the compost in my bin?

Turning the compost in your bin every 2-4 weeks will ensure proper aeration and faster decomposition. This process also helps mix in any fresh organic materials added to the compost pile. Don’t forget to wear gloves and a mask for proper hygiene.

Is it necessary to have a lid for my composting bin, and if so, what kind of lid is best?

Yes, it is necessary to have a lid for your composting bin to maintain optimal conditions for composting. The lid helps regulate moisture and temperature levels, prevent unwanted pests, and minimize unpleasant odors. The best lid is a tight-fitting one that allows for proper air circulation. A hinged lid with a locking mechanism or a removable lid is ideal for easy access and proper ventilation. 

Avoid using lids made of plastic or metal, as these materials can retain too much heat, affecting the composting process. Opt for a lid made of wood or biodegradable materials, such as bamboo, to keep your composting bin environmentally friendly.


Creating your backyard compost bin is a simple and cost-effective way to reduce household waste and provide your garden with nutrient-rich soil. By following the step-by-step guide outlined above, you can easily create a compost bin that is both practical and visually appealing. 

Whether you opt for a basic wire bin or a more sophisticated wooden bin, the important thing is that you start composting today. You will do your part to reduce waste and contribute to a healthier and more sustainable environment.

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