February 11, 2009

Vermicomposting

Posted in Uncategorized at 3:53 pm by thealligatorpurse

Wikipedia defines it as… “Vermicompost (also called Vcompost, compost, vermicast, worm castings, worm humus or worm manure) is the end-product of the breakdown of organic matter by some species of earthworm. Containing water-soluble nutrients, microbes, and bacteria, vermicompost is one of the best, nutrient-rich organic fertilizer and soil conditioners available.[1] The process of producing vermicompost is called vermicomposting.”

Yep, worm farming.  Specifically to make a very nutritious compost for smaller things, like houseplants.  Actually, I do know someone who grew up vermicomposting for a whole farm, but I’m nowhere near that huge scale.  I began a couple of years ago with a 22 quart sterilite container that I drilled holes in.  I purchased 500 red wiggler worms online and fed them my produce scraps.  They ate, grew and multiplied.  I would say that now, I probably have about 20,000.  All I do is shred some newspaper for them every once in a while, give them a spoonful of dirt, and pile in the scraps.

Recently, we started noticing fruit flies.  I didn’t know where they came from, but figured probably the bananas on the counter.  Still, the food in my bin was probably feeding them and keeping them in the house.  So, I moved my worm bin outside to the garage.  Since it is winter, the worms moved to the center of the bin and hibernated, I guess?  They stopped eating the food, so I had to come up with a better solution.  So…I finally gave in and ordered a real worm bin.  How much fun I had setting it up!  I put the worms and their scraps in the bottom tray, and began a new bed for them in the next tray up.  It’s already nearly full, so I’m starting a third tray. 

This is the bin all put together.  The white sheet hanging from the bottom is temporary, until the bottom tray is empty of worms, just to prevent their excape.

0032

Here is a picture of some of the finished compost.

0042

Here is a picture of the worms doing their work.

0061

Now, I will have lots of great, organic fertilizer for my spring planting!

Advertisements

3 Comments »

  1. Joel Smith said,

    you have worms in your house?! i never knew this! thats pretty interesting…

  2. Grace said,

    I’ve had them for a couple of years. They used to live in the basement…where you slept!

  3. Stephanie said,

    Knowing about this makes me very uncomfortable. I’m scared of worms…Jared tells me this is an irrational fear but I can’t help it. Don’t know how you do it…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: