DIY Composting


Colorado’s poor soil conditions can make gardening a challenging task. One of the best ways any gardener can improve their garden’s soil conditions is to add organic matter to the soil. You can find bags of organic soil additives at your local home improvement store. However, you do have the choice to make your own by compost. By composting at home you can lower your gardening costs and give yourself more control over what you grow your garden in.

One of the most important steps of composting is aeration. The bacteria in the compost need oxygen to carry out aerobic respiration that creates compost. The easiest way to aerate compost is to create a tumbler for your compost container.

Creating Your Composting Bin and Tumbler:

1)      Purchase a plastic drum. Size: 20-55 gallons.

2)      Purchase a PVC pipe 2’ in length 2” in width.

3)      Drill a whole large enough for the PVC pipe in the center of the top and bottom of the plastic drum.

4)      Pass the PVC pipe through the holes until the pipe sticks out evenly on both sides of the barrel.

5)      You will now need to build a sawbuck (a stand) for your compost barrel to rest on. Nail (2) 2×4’s in an x frame. Next, nail (2) 2×4’s horizontally across the base of the x frames

6)     Place your composting barrel into the center of the x-frame.

7)      Using a 1” drill bit, drill aeration holes every 6 inches.

8)      Cut a rectangle or square hole in the side of the tumbler. Use hinges and a latch to create a door.

9)      Using a rectangular piece of sheet metal 1’ in length and 1’ in width, bend the metal into an L- shape and secure inside of the tumbler to help stir the compost.

10)   Now place organic materials such as leaves or old food in the bin. You need to rotate the bin daily for the compost to be broken down.

11)   Once the organic materials are broken down you can add them to your lawn or garden


If you have any questions or want any more information about creating your own compost tumbler, please contact or call (303)-721-9003.


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