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We're Digging It

  • June plant swap is Saturday
    “June Plant Swap” is 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday at Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St. Reservations are required by Thursday; 427-6000 or go to www.
  • Workshops focus on preserving produce
    FORT WAYNE – The Purdue Extension Service in Allen County is offering Preserving Nature’s Bounty workshops on safe home food preservation procedures and to answer frequently asked questions on canning, freezing
  • Master Gardener helpline available
    A free Master Gardener Volunteers Helpline is available through The Ohio State University Extension Office in Paulding, Ohio.
Cathie Rowand/ The Journal Gazette
Make your own spinning composter for around $23.

DIY $23 spinning compost bin

My neighbor John bought a spinning compost bin on sale. It is a plastic barrel that spins on a rod with spikes that helps keep yard waste aerated. It will turn yard wasted to dirt in about four weeks.

I immediately wanted one too. I have a pile in the woods that turns yard waste to dirt in a year. This process would be faster it I went out and turned the debris every once in a while.

If my old garbage can with a locking lid wasn't currently being used to store shovels, hoes and a broom, I could drill some holes for aeration and then kick it around the yard to help break up the debris.

I've been wanting to replace my 35-gallon rain barrel with a 55-gallon rain barrel. My 35-gallon plastic rain barrel is the perfect size. Plus the lid had been sawed off and has draw clasps to keep it attached. This will enable me to add yard waste and then close it back up.

Instead of kicking it around the yard, which might actually flatten out some mole mounds, I put four casters on an old crate I found in my garage to spin the barrel on.

I also drilled more holes in the barrel for aeration and hammered in 6-inch galvanized nails, 10 nails on each side.

Including the original cost of the plastic barrel and draw clasps, I have spent about $23 for the material needed. I have also put a video together showing how I turned my plastic rain barrel into a spinning composter.

Journey through gardening season with Rosa Salter Rodriguez (feature writer), Anne Gregory (Web editor and writer), Frank Noonan (copy editor) and Cathie Rowand (photographer)