Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Spring Into Composting! Keter Composter And Oggi Countertop Pail

Spring has arrived and we finally bought a composter!!! Very exciting! For the past nine months I have been feeling bad about throwing away my veggie scraps. Now I can happily save my juicing pulp, along with my veggie scraps, to put towards making good soil to grow a few plants. We purchased a tumbler style composter, at a big box store. The brand is 'Keter Dynamic Turn and Go Composter.' The price was reasonable compared to what we saw online. The unfortunate part was that it came in pieces. 

This made for a nice Sunday morning project for Ben after breakfast. I will have to say getting those curved barrel panels to pop into place caused much gnashing of the teeth. Eventually with all four hands we were able to wrangle the bugger, and get the outer rim screwed on. After that it was a breeze to put the rest of the parts together. 

Then we took our little baby outside to find a level sunny spot to place the new tumbler. I had saved vegetable and fruit scraps all week knowing we were going to have the composter soon! I feel pretty good when I look outside and see our composter. Later we placed a kitty litter box under the barrel, to catch compost tea and to fertilize our garden.

Back to the kitchen to get what we needed next. Oh! What a mess-o-produce-bags filled with mush I had piled on the counter! We carried the rotting goodies out to the composter and Ben did the inaugural dumping of the veggi mess. I took a picture of the scraps inside the tumbler...but it was kinda gross! So I am not posting that one!

We had also purchased an Oggi Bamboo Compost pail to collect our scraps in the house. That goodie arrived just two days ago and it will need to be emptied into the composter tomorrow already. Which works out because you have to spin the barrel 5 times every few days. This little can looks way better than those clear produce bags!

We need to check our aeration holes on the barrel tumbler, and make sure most are open to provide the vital oxygen. I have not done composting for over 30 years, so I have to read up on the smelly basics. Back in the day we used to do it in an outdoor area made up of 3 cinder block walls, into which we shoveled a mix of garden debris, kitchen scraps, hay, horse manure, and leaves. We grew thirty different awesome vegetables, and a few towering sunflowers back then. It works if you have the space.

Here is our cute little Oggi countertop compost pail for the kitchen scraps. It has a charcoal filter to keep down the odor. I did some research online and a lot of people seem to like this one. 

It's made of eco friendly bamboo fiber, so that is good. I decided to line the can with my veggie produce bags, so it does not get dirty inside. We reuse those bags constantly around the house, besides using them in the juicer pulp container.

That kitchen countertop composter can is already full with veggie pulp! We keep a five gallon covered pail in our mudroom to store the filled bags from the countertop pail. When the five gallon bucket is full of those sealed bags we dump everything into the tumbling composter. 

This is how we welcome the sights and smells of Spring! Smelly good... and smelly bad!

Update: Twice had a bad experience with our Keter rotating barrel composter. During spinning, the door came off and dumped the rotting contents out and under the composter making a mess. Compost liquid stains clean concrete. Better to design a door that did not fall off so easily. You must check that the door is locked as tight as can be against the edge of that section, before you tumble the contents. I now always check that and bang it into place. Nature does its thing very well turning my leftover veggie and fruit scraps into dirt and compost tea. After the last smelly spillage event, we moved the rotating composter to a spot on the lawn behind our garage near my garden. We still use this composter and we have not had any accidents for over two years. We filled this baby up too! Plus when we moved it traveled as is with the contents still inside.

You can go here to page 2 of my Composting store to view the next composter I would buy, which is called the "Lifetime" tumbler composter recommended by John Kohler of Growing Your Greens. Having a two section composter is a better idea! Check out the many items on those pages related to composting and gardening to give you some ideas.

Our Oggi Bamboo counter-top composter bucket has been great! After two years I continue to love this pail! There is no smell, and I still like the way it looks in the kitchen.


  1. Crystal- a spinner composter and a rain barrel are on my list!!! I'm getting soaker hose and setting up an irrigation system in my vegetable garden this year. I can't wait for the fresh veggies!!!
    I'm trying some cucumbers juiced with fresh mint from the herb garden this weekend. The warm weather has made it pop up like crazy!

  2. I remember the photos of your gorgeous garden last year! I am so jealous of how much you are able to produce! Mint sounds good in veggi juice. Just finished a cucumber, celery, Romain and apple combo. Light and refreshing!