12 Things to consider when choosing a composter

If you have never composted before you have probably never thought about what you need to compost or how much work is involved in certain types of composting. This guide 12 Things to consider when choosing a composter gives you a list of things to think about that might affect they way you compost and what system best suits your needs or what system you would prefer to use.
I don’t think there is a right or wrong way to compost. It comes down to what you like, what fits in your garden, what you find easy, and what works in your environment. So consider the 12 things and then work out what is best for you.

1. What is it you hate about composting?

a. The time it takes to manage some composters – and/or it’s a chore
b. The smell some composters produce
c. The difficulty with getting the right nitrogen/carbon mix
d. Don’t like big composters taking up space or being visible in the garden
e. The vermin they attract – flies and rats or snakes nesting inside them
f. The continuous cost of product to make some composters work

2. What do you want to achieve by composting?
Or – What do you like about Composting?

a. Produce soil to use for growing vegies and ornamental plants
b. Don’t want to use fertilisers in your garden
c. Prefer a more organic system
d. Want to help the environment
e. Just want good soil in your back yard
f. Hate throwing your waste in the council bin or storing overnight in a freezer
g. Hate smelly council bins

3. What do you want to compost?

a. All kitchen waste or just some of it. eg. worm friendly waste only
b. Garden waste, green waste, grass clippings, weeds etc
c. Animal excrement – dog and cat poo in particular
d. Farm animal waste

4. Do you have animals that get a portion or all of your waste?

a. Chickens / Ducks / Geese / Guinea Pigs / Rabbits
b. Horses / Cows / Goats / Pigs / Sheep
c. Dogs / Cats
d. Wild life – Bandicoots / Foxes / Bush Turkeys / Antechinus

5. How much time do you have to compost?

a. Your time is your own – unlimited (retired perhaps)
b. You have some time but prefer to use it for gardening or other activities
c. You are too busy to compost
d. You have children that can do it for you

6. Do you grow or want to grow vegetables?

a. You want to grow your own vegetables
b. You already grow your own vegetables
c. You want to teach the kids how to grow their own vegetables
d. You have not had much success with propagating and growing your own food

7. Your physical fitness?

a. Back problems – Can’t lift heavy weights Can’t bend down
b. Disabilities – wheel chair bound
c. Age
d. General health

8. Size of your property?

a. Farm land – unfenced / fenced
b. Large / small urban block
c. Courtyard
d. Unit / Balcony
e. Other

9. How many people in your household?

a. One person
b. Two people
c. Family of three to five
d. Family of five to ten
e. More

10. How much waste do you produce?

a. One bucket full a day
b. One bucket full every 2 to 3 days
c. One bucket full once a week
d. One bucket full every two weeks
e. More than one bucket a day

11. What is your climate like?

a. Tropical
b. Temperate
c. Cold
d. Arctic. You live in the snow perhaps
e. Desert. Hot and dry

12. What type of soil do you have?

a. Normal
b. Sandy or Sandy/Loam
c. Clay or Clay/Loam
d. Shale with perhaps some topsoil
e. Introduced soil
f. No ground soil but have raised garden beds

7 Different Methods of Composting

1. Open Air Composting (hot/cold composting) and above the ground composting (hot composting)


2. Direct Composting (trench or in ground composting)


3. Tumbler composting (a form of hot composting)


4. Worm Composting (Vermicomposting)


5. EMO Composting (Effective MicroOrganisms)


6. Combined “Compot” Composting


7. Commercial Composting


8.  No 8 Mechanical Composting

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