Does a compost bin need a bottom? may be. In fact, it would depend on several factors such as the climate, location of the bin. 

Does A Compost Bin Need A Bottom

In addition to that if you need to deter the critters you may have to consider placing a bottom in the compost bin. So, if you are excited to discover this subject, it would be worthwhile going through this article. Before proceeding further, a compost pile is more like a living organism structure. There are organisms such as earthworms and millipedes which you can spot and microorganisms such as bacteria and fungus which you cannot spot with your naked eye.

Compost pile comprises both these elements. They would work toward making the end result of beneficial compost. It is an ecofriendly way of transforming your kitchen wastage into an eco-friendly nutrient rich soil addictive. In fact, gardeners call the compost as black gold. So, if you are starting fresh to make a compost bin, you need to ensure that you are up to date with all the relevant details before proceeding further. 

For example, you need to know whether you should place the compost bin, should you cover the compost bin and Does a compost bin need a bottom as well. So, this article will solve almost all your issues which you have related to compost making and particularly on the subject of whether your compost bin needs to have a bottom.

The best place for a compost bin

Making the compost bin in the best place is very vital. Composting would take place in both sunlight and in shade. However, there could be some compost piles where the composting will take place at a rapid rate if you expose them for ample sunlight.

On the other hand, if the compost dries out faster, you may have to keep them moistened all the time too.Many people opt to keep the compost bins in back corners since they think they look less appealing in terms of aesthetic value. It won’t be the best addition for the landscape. However, once you place it in the spot where you are going to use it more, it would be convenient.

Does A Compost Bin Need A Bottom

Does a compost bin need a bottom ?

If you are making a compost bin right from the beginning, you do not need to have a bottom in the compost bin. Once you make the composting materials to be in contact with soil directly , it would allow the microorganisms, worms and other insects to actively engage in the composting process. 

Once the materials break down, they release the moisture. Further when there is no bottom it would make it easy for the excess moisture to drain away too. Compost bins may get damp and soggy.

Ultimately those conditions would kill the beneficial organisms and other healthy bacteria as well. Ultimately, they would release a foul odor too. That said, if you have a solid base on a compost bin, It would be easy for you to remove the finished compost. However, you may also take a scoop of the finished product and use it too.

There are manufactured compost bins and compost tumblers which usually come up with solid bottoms. They would usually have drainage holes too. So, if your composter has a bottom, you may use it without any hesitation.

However if you are making a compost pile from the start , you could directly place it on the soil or even on your lawn. It will give you the best results. That said, if your compost is on a hard surface, I suggest you build a raised bed and then place the compost bin on top of it. That way you could catch drainage.

It is a common sight to spot many experienced gardeners making compost layers with branches and with sticks which are made a few inches in height. This way it would keep the compost pile in an elevated place. Consequently, it would contribute to a proper air circulation in the compost pile.

How to keep critters out of compost

Many people tend to have a bottom in the compost bin so that they can distract the critters such as mice, volved shrews and other animal species. These animal species are fond of digging the compost so that they can feed on the kitchen scraps and rest of other plant materials. 

When there are cold winter conditions, small animals would tend to sneak into your compost pile so that they can gain some warmth during these times. On the other hand, they would exit the pile during spring. 

So, to avoid these animals from reaching your compost piles which don’t come up with the bottom, you need to ideally line the base with hardware cloth or even with chicken wire. You may ideally choose materials which have smallest openings so that they would keep these critters away from the compost piles.

Does A Compost Bin Need A Bottom

What Do I Put at The Bottom of My Compost Bin?

Generally speaking, I don’t recommend placing something beneath the garden compost. The reason for that is you will get an effective compost only from a compost bin which you have placed directly in the soil. 

Having said that, if you really need to place something right at the bottom of the compost bin, best would be to provide a wooden or a brick support and place it right beneath the bottom of the compost bin.

Once the composting occurs, it would release a product called compost tea which would contain so many nutrients which would be effective for plant growth. So, many people tend to put wooden support or even brick and then place a tray right beneath these two, The purpose of placing the tray is to collect compost tea. 

Further if you have a small place to keep the compost pile and if you don’t want to make a mess of it, you could consider placing a tray and collecting the compost tea into it.


So, if a compost bin needs to have a bottom, it would depend on certain factors which I have explained in the above. However, if you use a compost bin which has a bottom it would preserve heat which is crucial for the composting to take place at an effective rate. 

Further it would defend the critters such as rodents and the rest of other insects also. Moreover, it would help to retain moisture within the compost pile as well. These are crucial for the microorganisms active mechanism in the compost piles.

Credit to : Diego Footer

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Hello, I'm Dr. Chamika. I am a Researcher in Environment and Water quality, Aquatic organisms, and Environmental chemistry. My mission is to help other. You can use this knowledge to enhance your life THE BEST environments you possibly can.

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