How to Make Your Own Bokashi Bucket

Start making great compost with our simple how-to guide to making your own bokashi bucket using upcycled materials.

Bokashi ‘composting’ is an incredible force for good. It’s often touted as a space-saving ‘compost’ solution for apartment dwellers. But bokashi is something I think we should all do. Whether we live on a farm, urban block or apartment.

This is because bokashi  is fundamentally different from any other method of composting. In fact, it’s not really composting at all. While traditional methods involve decomposition, bokashi buckets involve fermentation.

Yes, that’s right! Bokashi uses the same bacteria you make your sauerkraut with on your compost. In bokashi, lacto bacilli are applied to your organic waste in an anaerobic environment. And, essentially, they pickle it. Once mature, your pickled bokashi mix is added directly to the earth and covered where it will provide a veritable smörgåsbord for the soil food web.

Bokashi, however, does need to be composted (ie. decomposed) by the soil food web once it is pickled to maturity. In many cases this involves creating a “soil factory” or adding bokashi to a hot compost mix.

Bokashi tea can also be used to condition your soil factory or compost pile, cycling nutrients in a bio-available form to your soil ecosystem. Some people call bokashi a “pre-compost”, which is a much more accurate description of what it actually is.

We have been using bokashi as part of our composting system at our place for the last three years and we really think it creates a great, humus rich soil.

But bokashi buckets often come with an expensive price tag. So, how do we make our own DIY bokashi bucket? It’s easy (and free!).

All you need is:

  • Two food grade buckets of the same size. We get them for free from a cake factory near our home.
  • One tight fitting lid
  • A plate or other lid that fits snugly in the bucket
  • A drill

How to make your bokashi bucket:

Step one

Step two

Step 3

Step four

Step five

Step six

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