Building a Pallet-able Compost Bin

Reader Contribution by Ingrid Butler
1 / 10
2 / 10
3 / 10
4 / 10
5 / 10
6 / 10
7 / 10
8 / 10
9 / 10
10 / 10


Photo by Amanda Kim Stairrett

Composting in the office often seems like a far-off dream, but here at the MOTHER EARTH NEWSheadquarters, we’ve found an office-friendly solution: a repurposed trash can for the collection bin and a compost bin built from pallets. (Find the tutorial to build the bin here.) Now, we’re adding a second chamber to the compost bin, since we’ve been so successful with our composting endeavors.

Our compost collection bin doesn’t take up much space in the breakroom. Photo by Amanda Kim Stairrett

As you might suspect, adding on a second chamber is merely a matter of attaching three pallets to the original compost bin.

Photo by Amanda Kim Stairrett

The pallets are attached to the preexisting structure and screwed into place. That’s it!

Jay and Tyler install the back of the new chamber.Photo by Amanda Kim Stairrett

 Photo by Staff

 A board across the two chambers helps to reinforce the integrity of the structure.

The rest of the structure is further strengthened by screws. Photo by Amanda Kim Stairrett

Next, the overflowing compost has to be moved to the newly built chamber. The bin is opened from the side, and the compost is transferred.

Photos by Amanda Kim Stairrett

Our bins also attracted a visitor — this friendly cricket who was undeterred by the construction.


We hope our cricket visitor enjoys its new, spacious home, and we look forward to the time when our compost is ready to be integrated into the soil.

More on composting:

More on building with pallets:

More on the MOTHER EARTH NEWS Community Garden:

Want to grow a garden as lush as ours? Find our go-to products for garden maintenance, harvesting, and more at in the MOTHER EARTH NEWS Garden Shed.


In Compost Teas for the Organic Grower, you’ll find everything you need to know about feeding your garden, orchard, or smallholding with homemade and chemical-free “teas.” It’s packed with recipes for creating nutrient-rich, healthy soil, to give you healthy plants and ecosystems. Order from the MOTHER EARTH NEWS Store or by calling 800-234-3368.

If you’d like to be a MOTHER EARTH NEWS Community Garden sponsor, contact Brenda Escalante.

Thank you to our sponsorsGarden In MinutesNeptune’s HarvestCoast of MaineSouthern Exposure Seed ExchangeMeadow CreatureLehman’sMOTHER EARTH NEWS StoreHappy Leaf LEDBerry Hill Irrigation.