How To Build & Use A Two-Bin Compost System – Make Great Compost With Ease!

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You may be astonished by how straightforward it is to construct your very own two-bin compost system – and how rapidly it can generate a continuous stream of exceptional compost for your garden and flowerbeds!When it comes to enriching your soil and nourishing your plants, nothing compares to compost. Compost harbors an ideal blend of nutrients and organisms that rejuvenate exhausted soil. These same nutrients readily infuse plant roots, empowering them to flourish.Compost is ideal for incorporating into spring planting holes for vegetables, flowers, herbs, and more. It also serves excellently as mulch around plants, retaining moisture while funneling nutrients into the soil. Moreover, you can concoct an incredibly potent fertilizer tea by simply steeping compost in water.
build a two bin compost system

Having compost readily available is essential for constructing and sustaining healthy soil and plants. The greater the quantity you can produce and utilize, the more fruitful your plants will become!

The primary challenge with compost is the perpetual struggle to produce or possess an adequate supply throughout the entire growing season. Even top-notch compost piles typically require six to eight weeks to decompose fully. If you rely solely on a single pile, your compost reservoir may deplete swiftly. This is precisely where a two-bin compost system can come to the rescue!

The Benefits Of Using A Two-Bin Compost System

With a two-bin system, you can instantly double your compost production capacity. Gone are the days of waiting for one pile to finish before starting a new batch. Instead, with a two-bin setup, you can have your next batch already in progress.

The benefits of a two-bin system extend far beyond just increasing compost output. Firstly, you can extract materials that decompose slowly from a nearly completed pile and transfer them to the new batch. This allows you to utilize the ready compost and initiate another pile even more swiftly.

Moreover, by transferring some partially decomposed compost from one bin to kickstart a new pile in the other bin, you introduce essential bacteria and organisms crucial for accelerating decomposition. This results in a faster turnaround time, providing you with more compost to use in record time!

Double Bin System

A two-bin system doubles the capacity for compost production. While one pile is in the finishing stage, a new pile can be initiated. This not only increases the volume of compost produced but also accelerates the composting process significantly!

Arguably the greatest advantage of having two bins is the ability to gather twice the amount of material! When leaves cascade down or when you accumulate grass clippings or trim back plants, you’ll find yourself with more room than ever to store them. Regrettably, with just one bin, you often end up with space for only a fraction of the available materials.

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How To Build & Use A Two-Bin Compost System

Constructing your two-bin composter is surprisingly straightforward. Armed with a few essential tools and some untreated 2x lumber, you can assemble a stylish two-bin system in just a matter of hours.

There are crucial factors to consider when building any compost bin. Firstly, each bin should have the capacity to hold at least 3 cubic feet of material. Dimensions of 3′ x 3 ‘x 3’ are considered perfect for a single compost pile.

Smaller piles struggle to retain heat, leading to slower decomposition and prolonging the time required for finished compost. Conversely, larger piles may retain heat well but can prove challenging to manage and turn, not to mention requiring ample space.

Therefore, crafting a double-bin system with two individual 3′ x 3′ x 3′ bins positioned side by side is optimal. This setup provides ample space for each working pile and ensures easy access to both bins.

The front slats of this double bin can be adjusted as required to conceal the pile when necessary. The open slats on the back and sides facilitate airflow to the pile, essential for maintaining its temperature and facilitating the breakdown of materials.

Compost Bin Materials – How To Build & Use A Two Compost Bin System

Standard 2x framing lumber is an excellent choice for constructing compost bins. It’s crucial to use untreated wood for your bins as treated lumber contains a myriad of chemicals that can seep into your compost, posing harm to your plants and yourself.

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Untreated framing lumber demonstrates remarkable durability. Additionally, you have the option to paint or stain the exterior (as compost doesn’t come into contact with the outer edges), helping to maintain its appearance over time.

How To Build & Use A Two-Compost Bin System

We offer comprehensive step-by-step building plans for the double compost bin featured below in our Etsy shop. All our step-by-step plans are instant-download PDFs, priced at $10 each. These plans include a complete material list, cut list, and detailed instructions accompanied by photos at every step of the process.

Having two bins provides twice the capacity for composting! What’s more, you can allow one pile to finish while simultaneously starting another.

The featured bin below is designed with slat spaces on the sides and back, facilitating excellent airflow to the pile. Its front section incorporates removable wood slats that can be easily slid in and out to facilitate working with the pile. This feature is particularly convenient for concealing the pile when not in use.

To construct the double compost bin, you will need (11) 2 x 6 x 12’s and (1) 2 x 4 x 12′ board. The 2 x 6 x 12’s can be readily cut down to form the primary 6-foot sections for the front and the smaller 3-foot sections for the sides. Once again, opting for 2x lumber is essential for durability, as thinner boards measuring 3/4 inch or even 1 inch are prone to warping and rotting too quickly.

Tools & Fasteners

Using screws for assembling any wooden bin is highly recommended. Not only does it expedite the assembly process, but screws also provide superior board retention compared to nails, which tend to loosen over time.

As for tools, you’ll require a saw for cutting straight boards. A chop saw, circular saw, or even a hand saw will suffice. Additionally, a power screwdriver/drill and a 1/8th inch drill bit for pre-drilling screw holes are all the tools you’ll need.


The assembly of the two-bin composter is quick. Once the frame is constructed, the only remaining step is to add the center divider.

Not only is the compost bin effortlessly assembled, but it also complements any surroundings with its appealing appearance! The 3-foot sides and 6-foot back form a “U” shape, with a straightforward middle section dividing the two bins into (2) 3-foot sections. A 2 x 4 is then utilized on each front side to establish a channel for the front slat boards to slide in.

This open-top composting bin system facilitates easy access and optimal airflow, making compost maintenance a breeze. If desired, it’s quite simple to fashion a lid or cover for the bin. Here’s to creating and utilizing a double compost bin system – ensuring a never-ending supply of compost!


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