So what is Vermicomposting!? I am sure everyone has heard a little about composting and some benefits. There are different ways to compost but today I want to talk about Vermicomposting, It’s simply composting with earthworms to break down organic matter. composting with worms breaks the matter down into fertilizer. Vermicomposting is usually done in an enclosed bin. You can buy one online or build your own.
Here is one I got off Etsy
Vermicomposting can be done outside or indoors and when done properly there is no odor. compared to the hot composting, Vermicomposting takes around 2-3 months to produce usable compost for your garden and plants. You harvest the compost and leave the worms. There is a misconception that you need to aerate and turn on a regular basis. With standard hot composting that is correct but the worms actually create and eat away little tunnels that allow the air to circulate. Worm bins are typically shallow so there is no need to mix up the soil. When you harvest the soil you end up stirring up any packed bedding.
What types of worms? Typically red worms are most used for composting.
So if this sounds like something you would be interested in and reducing waste a good natural way while supplying your plants rich homemade soil I attached a little how to DIY.
To get started get yourself a worm farm/bin with a lid and some worms. I started with 2 boxes of worms and soil I already had. Fill the box on top of newspaper moistened with water and then layer with dirt and the dirt they came with. This is typically not a huge amount. Around 8-12 inches. After they are established remember with feeding them that you don’t want to typically over feed more than they can consume or it may start to smell. Remember worms like dark moist (not wet environments) and they hate light. after You have settled them in leave them alone for a week. Before feeding.
The following is ok to feed them : vegetable scraps, coffee grinds, tea bags, little bits of paper and cardboard (non coated), mulch or leaves, or eggshells, some people swear by fish and fish heads, but before you put more food in remember worms only eat half their body weight each day so if food is remaining and you feel you are over feeding you might need a bigger farm and more worms or feed them less. Make sure to cover up with a cloth over the top and close the lid.
if they are eating to slowly you can chop up the matter smaller which makes it easier for the worms to digest. When you feed your worms you really only need to make sure the bedding isn’t to wet, if so give additional paper materials, and if it’s too dry spritz with a water bottle. Once you are up and running there is little to no maintenance. The worm compost should be brown and “earthy looking” and once it is you want to harvest the worm castings.
Harvesting: typically every 2-6 months
the most common way to harvest is dumping the contents on a large plastic sheet or flat container and manually separating the worms while keeping aside some of the original compost to start again with a new worm bed.
Not sold yet? Let’s go over the benefits of what this creates!
Vermicompost enhances plant growth and Increases water retention and aeration. This reduces the need for chemical fertilizers and reduces the amount of waste going into landfills. This is an effective and organic method to feed your plants.
if you try it let me know how yours comes out! This is a fun project that can be done with your kids. For my oldest who also fishes he has a never ending supply of worms now also.
Thanks for for dropping in!