Organic Garden Fertilizer ” How to Worm Compost

Worm excretion, also known as Vermiculture, is an excellent way to fertilize your garden organically. Listed below is a step by step guide to get you started on creating your own worm compost fertilizer.

Get a Container

For best results, acquire a container that is eight to twelve inches deep. In addition, wood is an excellent material for your worm compost as it absorbs moisture and insulates the worms. There are some who prefer a rectangular shaped plastic container; however these tend to make the compost soggy.

Have Plenty of Holes in the Bottom

It is important to drill holes at least two inches apart all across the bottom of your container. If you are using a plastic container, it will need several addition holes. Once your holes are drilled, place the container on bricks to lift it off the ground. This will allow air flow to circulate under and through the container. It is also very important to keep a tray underneath your container in order to catch any excess moisture. This excess liquid can be used as liquid fertilizer. If you notice your compost seems extra soggy, simply add more holes to the bottom.

Line Bottom with Shredded Newspaper

Place newspaper that has been shredded into one inch wide strips and has been dampened with water from a spray bottle into the bottom of the container. Next, simply add about one cup of sand. The sand assists the worms with digestion.

Collect Kitchen Scraps

Just as you would save leftovers for your home composting, you will need to save your kitchen scraps for your worm compost. This should be started at least one week prior to purchasing your worms. The best foods are egg shells, used tea bags, coffee grounds and raw fruit and vegetable leftovers. The foods you want to avoid are meat, bones, cheese, milk or mayonnaise and salad dressings.

Buy Worms

You will need to have at least 2 pounds of worms for each day of food waste. Surprisingly, this works out to be approximately 2,000 worms. The best variations for composting are red worms or red wigglers as they thrive off of organic materials such as rotting fruits and vegetables.

Put a Cover on the Container

When placing your container outside, a wooden board works best as it keeps the worms in darkness just as they like it while keeping the soil moist. In addition, it also prevents predators from getting in. If your container is indoors, a simple plastic lid cover will suffice.

Collect Worm Castings

After two to four weeks, the bedding in the container will start to appear darker. By two to three months, nothing of the original bedding will be left. At this point, you can then harvest your worm castings or compost. First, simply pour the container out in piles on a tarp or old shower curtain liner. Then, shine a bright light over the piles to ensure all the worms move to the bottom. Now you can begin collecting. Scoop away all the compost until all that is left are worms. Finally, re-line the container with new bedding, add worms and some of their castings and begin again.

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One Response to “Organic Garden Fertilizer ” How to Worm Compost”

  1. Karen More Says:
    This is a very useful article. After I read it, I know I could easily start a worm farm and have a use for all the coffee grounds that I now throw away. Thank you!

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