One of the most popular projects of the past few years has been the pallet compost bin. There has been a boom in the community interest in repurposing abandoned pallets for furniture and landscaping. This, in conjunction with a surge of interest in creating sustainable gardens through processes like composting, has led the pallet compost bin being touted as a composting solution that combines these trends in environmental sustainability.
Basically, the project involves using one pallet for the floor, erecting three walls fashioned from pallets that are then screwed to the floor, and then erecting a hinged final wall to create a gate for easy compost turning. Sounds good right? This does not, however, mean that this is a perfect project that you can do in a day and it won’t necessarily work in all conditions.
Here are some of the ways that a pallet compost bin project can go wrong:
Wrong Yard, Wrong Bin
You need a fair bit of space in your backyard for a pallet compost bin to be a feasible project and if you live in very close proximity to your neighbours, then a pallet compost bin is not likely to make you very popular. In fact, some local governments have rules surround the use of open-air compost bins, so make sure you do the research before you get building.
Open to the Elements
One of the biggest mistakes people make when they first set up a pallet compost bin is to neglect to find a way to protect the contents. Letting your compost get dried out or allowing it to collect rain is a quick way to ruin your compost. You should consider working out some kind of lid for your structure if you want your composting to be successful.
Know Your Pallets
Some pallets, particularly those that have been imported internationally may have been chemically treated to ensure that there are no pests hitching a lift into a new country. This does not mean that every imported pallet will be unusable, but it’s important to do your research. You may find numbers and markings on the pallet that can indicate if a chemical eradication process has occurred.
You should also choose a pallette that isn’t already deteriorating rapidly. These pallets are going to be out in the elements come rain, hail or shine so choosing a pallet in good condition will give your compost bin the longest life possible.
Building a pallet compost bin will not be the backyard composting solution for every household. There are a number of ways it can go quite badly wrong. If you are unsure about what compost bin best suits your needs there are a range of styles available, including this one at yard and garage which is perfect for those wanting to get their compost system set up quickly, easily and effectively whilst avoiding some of the pitfalls of creating your own compost bin. It is vitally important that you do your research before you start building one of these trendy pallet projects because not only are not all pallets created equal but quite often online pallet tutorials may not give you the best advice.