DIY Compost Bin out of pallets

Compost Bin made from Pallets
This backyard that I keep going on and on about, the backyard that has changed the way our family lives and made all of Atti’s dreams come true, also offered me a ton of projects to get done. I mean inspiration. Right. It’s offered me a ton of inspiration.

There is still a lot of building refuse left around the backyard, some of it buried just under the surface of the dirt behind the retaining wall, others just stacked up in enormous cardboard boxes left on pallets. Over the last couple of months I’ve been clearing some of it out, throwing a lot of it away, and moving more of it around so that it’s there if the landlord should want it, but in the meantime it’s out of my way. After all that I had five pallets on my hands.

Right now it’s basically a fireable offense for a craft blogger to not make something out of any pallets that happen to cross her path. Be careful if you decide to google ‘Pallet Furniture’ because your pinterest account may explode. The rustic look isn’t my personal style so I haven’t been paying too much attention to this trend, but Free is practically my personal mission statement, so it was time for me to get on board.

In part to give myself a challenge to give the creative mojo a little shove, and in part because I had one day to work with Bear and a video camera, I decided that with these five pallets, I was going to come up with three projects, and finish them all in one day. First up, a compost bin.

This project is basically my answer to several overbuilt, useless, purely decorative compost bins I’ve seen over the last few months as I was researching options to make my own. I found some that were also made out of pallets but they were so ridiculously built that whoever designed them could never have actually been a gardener. Pretty little gates that were way too small for wheelbarrows, platforms and fences that made the walls so high you’d have to lift the shovel up above your head to put anything inside it. I just sit behind my computer screen and smh. This design is simple enough for anyone uncomfortable with power tools to cut their teeth, but it’s also an honest to goodness functional bin.

Compost Bin Tutorial Step 1
Some pallets have planks on both sides of the interior beams. Mine didn’t, but if yours does then remove them. Then saw the pallet apart, as close to the center beam as you can. Repeat that on the other end so you can remove the center beam. You’ll need four of these pieces.

Compost Bin Tutorial Step 2
Butt up two of the pallet pieces you’ve cut, and use a scrap piece of wood to screw them together. While any piece of scrap wood will do, I used a piece left behind on the center pallet I removed.

Compost Bin Tutorial Step 3
Butt another pallet piece up to one end and position them perpendicularly to make the corner. Use another piece of scrap wood and screw the pieces together. Repeat on the other side.

Compost Bin Tutorial Step 4
Staple chicken wire into the inside of the compost bin. You don’t really need to, but it will keep the compost from leaking out the sides as much and give it a little more stability.

To install this in your yard, dig a trench a few inches deep to the dimensions of your bin and then bury the sawed ends into the ground, leaving the finished end up.

Wanna see it in action? Here you go!