The Q&A Archives: compost bins

Question: I would like to purchase a compost bin for the first time and require advice on the most efficient options for the inland northwest. With a new house and close backyards, I require something that will both withstand the temperature changes here and that will not offend my neighbors with unpleasant odors. We are vegetarians and will also have significant amounts of lawn clippings to use. Thank you for your recommendations.

Answer: An enclosed compost bin will work best for you in your situation. There are several to choose from:
The Garden Gourmet; One of the most popular units in North America. Features include a dual access / snap shut lid, adjustable air vents, and a sliding bottom door for easy harvesting of finished compost. Compact unit has small footprint and fits neatly into tight garden spots. Black colored top and side panels absorb solar radiant heat for faster decomposition (place in a sunny location for best results). Simple, no-tool assembly.

The Bio-Stack Bin is similar in appearance and capacity; Green Johanna Hot Komposter (also called the green cone). It looks like an upside down trash can but is cleverly engineered. Designed and developed for the cold winters of Sweden, this remarkable unit does what few composters can claim - it will safely and efficiently turn all of your food scraps --- including meat, bones, fish and dairy --- into nutritious humus --- year round. How is this possible? By combining unusually high internal heat levels (up to 150 degrees F in the center) with a patented ventilation systems that continually oxygenates the air throughout the pile, the Green Johanna successfully breaks down virtually all organic kitchen wastes. A twisting-lock lid helps keeps animals and children out, while the louvered base plate with its 8 mm slits maintains optimum aeration for odor-free decomposition. A handy pile turner is included at no extra charge.

I think any of these units will work well for you.

Best wishes with your new compost bin!

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