Every good gardener knows that a compost bin is important for plant health. There are different types of compost bins and choosing the right one is dependent on your situation.The quick turnaround of compost will depend on the climate in which you live, how involved you are in the process and the season of the year. One process in composting is turning the contents as this helps to speed up the compost process however it doesn’t have to be done.
Stationary Composting Bins
A stationary compost bin will tend to have a larger capacity than other bins and are usually made of plastic with dark colours to help preserve heat in the bin.Most stationary compost bins have a lid on the top and are open on the bottom; the lid will help to keep moisture in while the open base will help microorganisms get in as they help to speed up the process. Some bins may also have a door to be used to remove the finished compost material, otherwise the material can be removed by removing the top lid.
The biggest advantage of using a compost tumbler bin is the ease of turning. These bins do however hold less than most stationarybins. The compost bins which tumble are designed with a metal or plastic bin mounted on a stand with a crank handle for turning. Tumbling compost bins are easier to use as they make it simpler to mix the contents of the compost and the regular spinning of the compost helps the material break down faster. Even though the material is broken down faster with spinning, most tumblers do not have openings which would allow worms and other microorganisms to enter the compost which would add to the nutrient value of the compost.
Worm composters produce quicker results than most other compost bins. The Eisenia Fetida (red wigglers) are the ones used in worm compost bins and they break down food waste rapidly. They produce very high quality compost and fertilizing liquid which can be considered as compost tea and the compost is practically odourless. Most worm composters are placed indoors and these types of worms thrive in temperatures between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Worm composters sometimes come with stackable trays which allows you to stack one tray on the other when the worm has digested the contents of the other tray. The worms will make their way up the trays while the worm castings (manure) gathers at the bottom.
There are also indoor composters which use little electricity. An indoor compost bin will break down kitchen waste while the electricity heats and aerates food scraps.Other types of compost bins include: concrete block compost bin, wooden pallet compost bin, plastic compost bin and wire compost bin. Each composter has their advantages and disadvantages. Concrete compost bins are the most stable as the blocks are virtually indestructible. An important aspect for most bins is to find a way to allow microorganisms in as they help speed up the composting process.
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