Garden composters

Backyard Compost Bin

Backyard composting is a cost effective and environmentally friendly way for you to produce nutrient-rich soil for your yard and garden, even if you already use your Green Bin. You can recycle:

  • Garden and yard trimmings
  • Uncooked food scraps, like vegetable and fruit peelings
  • Egg shells
  • Coffee grounds and tea bags
  • Leaves

 Avoid odours and attracting rodents and pests. Fish, meat, dairy, and grain products, grease, oil, and cooked foods like pasta and rice decompose too slowly in a backyard composter. Put these items in your Green Bin for collection.

What you need to know
What you need to know

Recycling and disposal facilities COVID-19 update

To ensure health and safety and support the continued functioning of our operations, you should: 

  • Visit our facilities ONLY if absolutely necessary; if you are unwell stay home
  • If you visit our facilities, wash your hands before and after your visit and keep a distance of 2 metres (6 feet) from staff and other guests
  • Defer spring cleaning to help prevent overloading residential waste collection and depot facilities  
  • Follow disposal guidelines for garbage and organic waste
  • Store bulky and recyclable items at home until the pandemic is over


Changes at our facilities:

  • Access is being restricted to respect physical distancing so expect delays
  • Walk-ins not permitted (vehicles only)
  • Debit and credit payment only (cash/cheques not accepted) 
  • Suspended/cancelled:  
    • Styrofoam drop-off 
    • Clothing and textiles drop-off 
    • Compost pick-up
    • Composter sales
    • NEW drywall drop-off (USED drywall still accepted at Vancouver Landfill)
    • Landfill open house
    • Landfill tours

How to buy a composter for your yard

A limited amount of backyard composters are available to purchase for Vancouver residents only. We sell backyard composters at about half the regular retail cost - we subsidize the other half.

Our backyard composters, provided by FreeGarden Earth:

  • Measure 33 inches high by 31 inches wide (84 cm high by 79 cm wide)
  • Are one piece construction - no seams and no assembly required
  • Have a capacity of 11 cu ft (311 litres)
  • Are made of 100% recycled materials
  • Come with an instruction manual
  • Come with a free aerator/compost turner (while quantities last)

More information is available at FreeGarden Earth

Note The FreeGarden Earth backyard composter comes as a solid unit and cannot be disassembled into multiple pieces. We recommend that you measure the space available in your vehicle first before going to the Transfer Station to purchase a unit.


$25 (taxes included), payable by credit card, debit card, cheque, or cash.

Where to buy a composter

Pick up and pay for your garden composter at the Vancouver South Transfer Station at 377 West Kent Avenue North.

Remember to:

  • Bring your driver’s licence, or a utility bill that shows you live in Vancouver.
  • Approach the station from the east on Kent Avenue. Use the weigh scale line up. Left turns are not allowed if you come from the west.

There is a limit of three composters per household.

Learn how to compost

Watch a video about composting your food scraps and yard waste in your backyard produced by City Farmer and the City at the Vancouver Compost Demonstration Garden.

Start composting in 10 easy steps, get tips, and solve common problems:

Read the brochure "Here's the Dirt: Backyard Composting" by Metro Vancouver  (750 KB)

What about fish, meat, bones, dairy products, cooked foods, grain products, grease, and oils? Put these food scraps in your City Green Bin for recycling because they decompose too slowly in backyard composters, cause odour problems, and attract pests.

Learn what goes in the green bin

Have questions about yard trimmings or composting?

Contact the Regional Compost Hotline, or visit the Compost Demonstration Garden:

2150 Maple Street
Vancouver BC

Phone: 604-736-2250

The hotline and garden are run by City Farmer, a non-profit organization, on behalf of the City and Metro Vancouver.

Order a worm composter

Apartment worm composters

Don't have a yard for a composter? Order a worm composting bin, perfect for producing fertilizer to use for your house plants.