This month the leaves have been falling in Houston. In my neighborhood, lawns are covered with them and landscape crews are blowing, raking and bagging. As I drove around I thought what a waste. All this rich organic matter being tossed in plastic bags, piled up at the curb, and headed for a landfill.
This year I reserved a small area in my backyard to compost my leaves. My yardman bagged them as he usually does, but I asked him to place them in the backyard INSTEAD OF THE CURB. Today, I made three VERY low cost compost bins out of fence material for around $5 each.
I bought a roll of REDBRAND Welded Wire Fence 3 ft x 50 ft (around $27). This should be enough to make 4 or 5 bins depending on the diameter of each. It is made in the USA, 14 gauge with 2″ x 4″ rectangular openings. A good pair of wire cutters will make it easier. Wear gloves and eye protection to be safe.
Roll out the wire, (about 10 feet worth), cut the wire on the far right side just before the next cross. Fold the wire over the other end and wrap it around to form a cylinder. Fill the bins with leaves…
and wait… Keep it moist. I put mine facing the sun, to keep them warm in the winter. I do not plan on turning these bins, I am going to wait and let them compost down naturally. I will be not be adding any more material to them, so that when they’ve composted down, all I have to do is remove the wire enclosure and fill the wheelbarrow. These bins will take time to decompose but I’ll have rich leaf mold compost for my veggie garden when its ready.