Soilsaver Composter - A Look at the Soil Saver Compost Bin

Low Cost Composters

Serious gardeners love to include fresh compost in their garden. A compost bin is a real boon to any gardener as it not only helps to create pure soil, but gives a sustainable way to dispose of garden and yard waste as well.

A compost bin doesn't have to be anything fancy, even just a pile in the corner of the yard can do the job of composting. But the reality is that we often would like to have something a little more attractive than old dead garden refuse piled up in a corner of the yard. A good low cost com poster can help speed the process along by helping to keep the active pile together, and helping to maintain the proper moisture levels as well.

Features of a Good Low Cost Composter

As anyone who has looked at a garden catalog or web site can tell you, you can spend hundreds of dollars on a high end compost tumbler. For many of us that garden as a part time hobby, we are more interested in a low cost or inexpensive composter. There are a few features you want to see in a low cost bin. We see how the Soilsaver composter stacks up against those requirements.

Side walls - Moisture retention is key to good compost, and vented side walls and a lid to keep excess moisture out are important.

Size - You want to have a large enough bin to get the pile to heat up, but not so large that it becomes difficult to load and unload the composter, or to turn the contents. The Soilsaver at just over 11 cubic feet is a nice size for the home gardener.

Bottom floor - This helps keep the critters out of the bin, and is the main feature that separates the very low cost composters from the slightly more expensive ones. This is well worth it, and it also helps with keeping your moisture levels under control.

Cons of the Soilsaver Composter - Like most of these compost bins, the door of the Soilsaver compost bin that is used for access to the finished compost is difficult to use, and the reality is the best way to use a composter like this is to do a batch at a time and turn the pile while it's working. While it can work by simply loading it, the composting process will speed dramatically if you turn the pile. You can do this by removing the whole contents and reloading it, but a much simpler way is to use a compost aerating tool, or a compost turner. Some gardeners choose to have two bins side-by-side to transfer the contents to the second bin to have two stages of compost "cooking."

Finally, there are a few complaints about this composter's lid not fitting well. Generally this seems to occur if it's not set up on level ground. Take care to do that and it will seat much tighter

Overall, this is a good low cost composter. The money you spend on this brand gets you a good size and an attractive compost bin keep your garden waste giving back for years.

Tilling Your Garden

When is the best time to add the compost to your garden? We till our garden in late fall or very early spring. The answer is when you doing your spring garden preparation. We till the garden twice in one setting. After the first run through, we add some of our compost, then we till again. This adds a boost of rich organic matter to the soil.

We also use the compost to plant our seedlings or seeds. We put some in the bottom of a hole we dig or use it to cover a fresh row of planted seeds. Here again, you get the added boost of organic matter.

We have always had a Troy Bilt rototiller and it has lasted for years with regular maintenance. As their motto says, it is built to last. I highly recommend this type of tiller. There are low-end tillers for smaller gardens and high-end tillers for the larger sized garden.

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Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

Great suggestions when you don't want a big, messy pile. I have linked to this article on my compost hubpage.

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