Where To Place Compost Bins? (The Right Answer + Tips)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

In the past, compost bins were kept out of the way in an area of the otherwise unused garden.

The location of your compost bin should be convenient, but it should not be in a location where odors or leaching liquids would be an issue.

Make sure the area is level, well-drained, and gets some sunlight. The composting process will be slowed down if the compost is too chilly.

A great location may make or break your project. So naturally, you’re looking for a site that’s just right for your specific requirements.

But at the same time, you must ensure that your compost bin is working at full capacity. It’s frustrating to put together a compost bin just to discover that it’s not working properly.

Here are some things to think about when deciding where to put your compost container.

Where Is The Ideal Place To Place Compost Bins?

Where To Place Compost Bins

Many factors must be taken into account while building a compost bin. The following pointers will assist you in setting up your compost bin properly from the start. 

  • A Spot That Is Not Too Chilly

Composting might be slowed considerably by a cold environment. A location that receives some sunshine is extremely crucial.

  • Less heat

Compost will be produced more quickly in a hot spot in your yard, but too much heat can cause the compost to dry out.

Moisture equilibrium is critical to the composting process. Therefore, avoid regions that are exposed to direct sunlight.

Composting works best when the pile is kept moist, so keep an eye out for any areas that could become too hot.

To avoid watering your compost heap continually, select a site on your lawn that receives some shade.

  • Avoid Areas With A Lot Of Wind.

If you place the bin in an area with a lot of wind, it will quickly dry out. Therefore, the pile must be moist at all times.

If possible, choose a location with windbreaks, either natural or artificial.

  • The Compost Bin Shouldn’t Be Placed Under the Tree

Under the tree seem like a great place to paste the bin. However, trees have root systems that actively seek out nutrients and water.

Therefore, it’s best to avoid placing your compost bin too close to trees or other large shrubs since their roots can penetrate the base of your compost heap and wreak havoc.

The last thing you need is to deal with that.

  • Accessible Location

It is advisable to locate your bin close to your home so that you can easily compost food scraps.

If you have to travel far to get to your compost pile, you may be reluctant to do so. Your compost will likely go to waste if the distance is too great.

Using a wheelbarrow to transport garden debris is probably the most convenient method of accessing the compost bin.

  • An Area You Can Work Freely

Workspace in front of your bin is just as important as access for a wheelbarrow. Compost should be mixed regularly for the optimum benefits.

Having a compost tumbler means this won’t be an issue.

It is, nevertheless, used with an open compost bin to have a little area in front so that you may remove and stir the compost or dump the bin when the compost is done.

  • Place It Close To Your Plants.

The compost is a substantial and dense substance. Compost shouldn’t have to be transported across large distances when it’s time to use it.

However, Composting can be easier if it is close to where you maintain your plants.

  • Put Some Distance Between Your House And The Compost

Things can go awry, and you sometimes end up with stinky compost. Some scents will go away after adjusting to various parameters, while others may linger.

A bad smell coming in from the kitchen is usually the last thing you want.

Occasionally, unwelcome visitors may be attracted to compost! Decomposing food waste, for example, attracts flies.

Likewise, a compost pile attracts a wide variety of insects.

  • Choose A Site Beside A Water Source

Moisture is necessary for the breakdown process.

Therefore, watering your compost bin may be necessary at different times of the year, depending on the season and location.

Again, having a water supply nearby or at least within hose reach is helpful.

  • Don’t Use An Area With A Concrete Or A Deck

Compost leachate, commonly known as “compost tea,” is a nutrient-rich liquid by-product of a compost pile. Leachate is virtually invisible in a grounded bin.

However, if the tumbler was placed on a hard surface, the leachate would drip onto the ground.

Compost bins should be placed on top of the soil wherever possible, especially if they’re grounded because the bacteria and earthworms that live in the soil can’t escape.

It’s good to start with a tiny amount of compost in a tumbler if you have an off-the-ground arrangement like that.

As long as your tumbler is placed on a hard surface, the leachate is a minor issue to keep in mind. A liner or pan should be placed on the ground to prevent stains.

  • Avoiding Your Neighbor’s Fence

The location of your compost bin might impact your relationship with your neighbors for a variety of reasons (leachate, flies, probable smell, etc.).

It’s especially true if you live in a neighborhood close to your neighbors.

Here is an article I wrote on is composting worth it

Should Compost Bins Be In Sun Or Shade?

The breakdown process is unaffected by whether the place is in direct sunlight or shade.

This is because contents are the primary heat source in any stack, and the sunlight is only a secondary factor.

In hot, arid conditions, however, where water loss can lead to dehydration, it is necessary to take steps to provide shade to keep the outer layers from drying out in direct sunshine.

In some locations, homeowners prefer to save their best ideal planting sites for the sunny sections of their gardens.

How Much Sun Does A Compost Bin Need?

A compost pile should be in the sun for at least four to six hours each day as a rule of thumb.

Compost requires at least a couple of hours of full light per day, although this varies by location.

In order to keep your compost at the ideal temperature of 130 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit, you need either place your bin in direct sunlight or paint its lid black.

Can You Put A Compost Bin On A Patio?

You have more possibilities if you live in an apartment or house with a balcony or patio.

Aerobic composting could be accomplished with a composting tumbler, but this will depend on the size of your balcony or patio.

You can use a vermicomposter outside as long as it doesn’t become too hot outside.

A ground-contact composting system can be set up in even the smallest backyards.

You can take advantage of the abundance of bacteria in the environment by allowing your compost to be exposed to the soil below.

Composters with lids keep out urban creatures if you live in a densely populated region.

Also check out this article I wrote on composting flowers

Does The Compost Bin Need A Base?

The base of a compost bin is not necessary.

Allowing worms and other composting organisms easy access to the soil ensures that the composting process runs well.

Metal bins with incorporated bases are an excellent choice where rodents are an issue, provided that the drainage is adequate.

Can A Compost Bin Go On Concrete?

In most cases, compost piles and containers should be placed on soil rather than concrete. The excess water can then be drained into the ground below.

Earthworms, beneficial insects and bacteria that live in the soil can migrate up into the piled bulk and aid in the breakdown process.


Once you’ve assembled all of the necessary components, deciding where to put your compost bin won’t take long.

Compost bins should be placed in a semi-shaded, well-draining area where they are both easily accessible to the kitchen and out of sight of the general public.

The quality and frequency of your compost can be greatly improved by carefully selecting the location of your compost bin.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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