Composting Equipment, Tools, and Supplies

We've Got It All!



So tell us...what brought you here?

What composting equipment, tools, or supplies are you searching for today?

Are you a large-scale composter, looking for a new piece of composting equipment? If so, we've got connections to companies selling commercial-sized compost grinders, turners, and spreaders.

Or maybe, just maybe, you're a small-scale backyard compost junkie, searching for a new composting tool to make your life a little easier. For instance, have you ever used a compost starter or accelerator? If not, you're definitely missing out. But don't worry, the links below will take you to pages that will teach you all about them.

No matter what composting equipment, tools, or supplies you need, we're sure you'll find it on this page. Well, that's not entirely true. If you're looking for a compost bin, tumbler, container, or compost tea supplies, we suggest you click on the matching tab to the left of this text.

For everything else, please start scrollin'...


compost accelerator pun

Compost Accelerator

A compost accelerator is an amendment that you add to your compost to help increase the microbial activity. By increasing this activity in your compost, you can reduce the time it takes to produce a finished product. If an accelerator contains living, or dormant, compost microorganisms, it will act as a compost inoculant. On the other hand, this amendment may only contain extra food for the microbes already present in your compost. Ideally, a compost accelerator will contain both of these ingredients.

You can add a compost accelerator at any time during your composting process. In contrast, a compost starter should only be added at the very beginning of the composting process.



Remember - Nothing can make up for an improperly built compost pile, not even the best compost accelerator. If your compost ingredients are not in the proper ratios from the start, you're asking for trouble.

To learn how to accelerate your compost, please click on the picture of the snail - we promise there was no pun intended.


supercharge your compost

Compost Starter

A compost starter, or compost activator, is ALWAYS necessary when building a new compost pile. The purpose of a compost starter is to introduce microorganisms into your compost. Essentially, a compost starter will act to inoculate your pile.

Without this microbe inoculation, you may have to wait up to 10 times longer for your pile to breakdown.

Thankfully, the best compost activator is also the cheapest - a couple heaping shovelfuls of finished compost or garden soil. Yep, it's that easy.

Have you ever made yogurt? If so, you should recall adding a "starter" culture before placing it in a warm location. This starter culture acts as a microbe inoculant. You can purchase starter cultures in the grocery store, but it's much cheaper to use a couple spoonfuls of your previously made yogurt. This is exactly the same concept we're applying to our compost pile, however, we're replacing a couple spoonfuls of previously made yogurt with a couple shovelfuls of previously made compost (or garden soil).

To learn more about compost starters, including how to SUPERCHARGE your compost, please click on the picture of the lightning bolt.


composting equipment - thermometer

Compost Thermometer

If you're serious about composting, a compost thermometer will be one of your most used tools.

Why?

Because it will allow you to determine the ideal time to turn your pile. This will lead to you producing finished compost as quickly as possible. Please note - this rapid production of finished compost is most applicable if you build your entire compost pile all at once.

If, on the other hand, you are adding ingredients on a continuous basis, a compost thermometer may not be as useful. However, we still find it enjoyable to check our pile's temperature once it has gained some size.

A compost thermometer can also be used to troubleshoot some of the most common composting problems. For instance, if you recently built your pile and it's not heating up, you may need to add more water, manipulate the aeration, or re-balance your ingredients. A compost thermometer allows you to pick up on these problems quite quickly.

To learn more about the ideal turning temperatures; the temperature needed to kill pathogens and weed seeds; and why ever serious compost junkie should have a compost thermometer, please click on the picture of the thermometer.


compost equipment - sifter

Compost Sifter

The next piece of composting equipment on the menu, is the compost sifter (aka the compost screen). Compost sifters can come in many different sizes and shapes. For example, a mechanical sifter is mandatory composting equipment for large-scale commercial composters. Whereas, a backyard composter would need a much more simple sifter, such as the one shown to the right.

Compost screens are wonderful to use, especially if you plan on topdressing your lawn with homemade compost. When topdressing, you want to ensure as much of the compost falls through the blades of grass and reaches the thatch layer beneath. This is much more likely to happen if you pre-screen all of your compost before applying it.

Compost screens can be purchased from a variety of gardening stores, but we're also going to show you how to build one.

To learn more about sifters, please click on the picture of the compost sifter.


compost equipment - aerator

Compost Aerator

The next piece of composting equipment is the compost aerator, or a compost mixer. Maybe up until now, you've said, "composting equipment just isn't for me. I don't need all these fancy gadgets! I just throw all my scraps in a pile and let nature do its thing." Well, you're not alone. However, sometimes a tool comes along that has the potential to save a lot of labor and time. We believe a compost aerator is just that tool.

Don't get us wrong, we still love our trusty compost fork, but there are circumstances where a compost aerator is a miracle worker. For instance, if the design of your compost bin forces you to turn your compost in a really confined space, the compost aerator can make this a lot easier.

To learn more about compost mixers, including which designs are most durable, please click on the picture of the compost aerator.


composting equipment - shredder

Compost Shredder

If you have the money, or the need, a shredder is a great piece of composting equipment.

A shredder, or compost grinder, is another tool that helps speed up the composting process. The smaller the size of the material in your pile, the more surface area that is exposed. With more surface area exposed, the microbes in your compost have more room to fed. When the microbes have more to fed on, they multiply faster, and your compost will break down much more quickly.

If you're a large-scale compost operation, your composting equipment will, more than likely, combine the shredder and screening functions. Please visit this page, for more information and advice on purchasing the right piece of composting equipment for your operation.

For the small-scale backyard compost junkie, we recommend several compost shredders that provide great power along with unmatched durability. However, if you're only dealing with leaves and other "soft" material (e.g food scraps and grass clippings), we suggest a much cheaper approach. Just run these materials over with your lawn mower before adding them to your pile.

To learn more about the best shredders for small-scale backyard use, please click on the picture of the compost shredder.


recycle symbol

Compost Turner

A compost turner is not a piece of composting equipment needed by small-scale backyard composters. However, a turner is one of the most critical pieces of composting equipment used by commercial compost operations.

There are three different styles of compost turner:

  • Self-Propelled - These machines do not typically require any additional equipment to operate, because they have built-in operator cabins. Self-propelled compost turners can be quite expensive, so you must make sure you consider all of your other options prior to making this type of investment. Please visit this page to learn more about self-propelled compost turners.
  • Pull-Type - These units are designed to be hooked up to a tractor's PTO (Power Take-Off) and pulled along side it. This offset-design allows the tractor to move along side the compost windrow, while pulling the compost turner over top of it. Please visit this page to learn more about pull-type compost turners.
  • Front-Mounted - These pieces of composting equipment are mounted onto the front of a tractor. During operation, the tractor operator will position the tractor directly in front of the compost windrow. As the tractor drives into the windrow, the turner will flip the compost to one side of the tractor's path. Please visit this page to learn more about front-mounted compost turners.
For more general information and advice about compost turners, please click on the picture of the recycling symbol.


composting equipment - spreader

Compost Spreader

The final piece of composting equipment we would like to discuss is the compost spreader.

If you're a farmer, or own a large piece of property, a commercial compost spreader is the only means of applying large amounts of compost to your land.

If you're an owner of a lawn care business, a small compost spreader will turn your client's lawns into lush carpets of greenery. A spreader will enhance all of your organic lawn care programs.

If you're interviewing lawn care companies to service your property, please ensure the company you choose uses a compost spreader. For instance, when we were running our lawn care business, we used the compost spreader shown in the image above.

To learn more about compost spreaders, both large and small, please click on the picture of the spreader.