It is a sad truth at my red dirt plot that there is never enough compost despite the fact that I have two bins, another homemade chicken wire contraption, and five shredded leaf piles. Every year, I must go to Edmond Feed (Farmer’s Grain) and purchase Back to Nature as supplemental compost.
Well, I hope this contraption will eliminate those extra trips. In March, Chris from Organic Compost Tumbler sent me this compost tumbler for review. When the tumbler arrived, it needed assembly which wasn’t super difficult. I did need HH’s assistance, so I would say it is at least a one woman and one man assembly deal. I also needed his help to carry it to the backyard.
I received the 9.5 cubic foot tumbler, which is made entirely of recycled materials. This tumbler sells for $285.95 with free shipping. There is also a 7.3 cubic foot tumbler for $226.79, also with free shipping.
I personally like the larger tumbler because my garden is rather large, and living in a rural area, I have a lot of matter to compost.
I placed the tumbler in a sunny spot and filled it full of leaves, garden refuse, etc. Since it came early in the season, I had more brown items than green, and now several months later, although the matter has reduced by half, I still don’t have finished compost.
Why? After perusing their website’s troubleshooting page, I believe it’s because of a couple of things:
- The compost isn’t staying wet enough. I live in a pretty dry climate, and the weather is hot, hot, hot (which further dries out the matter). The compost area is far away from the garden hose, and the only way to add water is to use a watering can.
- Early in the season, a lack of green matter also reduced the moisture content. So, I’ve started taking water down to the tumbler, and I hope the matter will break down quicker.
- We had a very cool spring, and temperatures have just now risen into the 90s. Higher temperatures mean faster matter breakdown.
Make no mistake, I don’t believe the lack of finished compost is the tumbler’s fault. Operator error is to blame. So, I’ll be posting an update later in the season as to whether the tumbler gave me finished compost and how long it took.