We got worms!

For the Garden

I purchased a worm bin that I have set up in the storage room of our house.  I wanted to play around with raising worms to see if this would be a good system for growing worms for chickens, worm castings for the garden, and worm wee for fertilizer…
There are about a million different “homemade” types of worm bins if you “google” it or do a search on YouTube.  I was going to make one and then decided I didn’t have the time and wanted to get started.  I am actually really happy that I decided to buy this bin.  It will make harvesting super easy.
The bin came with coconut coir.  You soak it and it needs to be the consistency of a wrung out sponge…

 I put some shredded newspaper on top of the coconut coir…

 Then, I put some of my finished compost in and another level of the coconut coir.  I put some food (veggie scraps) in one corner…

 I know this pic is blurry but you can see that I put a couple of damp piece of newspaper over the top to keep things from drying out.

 Here are the worms gathered around the veggie scraps…

 The bin I bought has 5 levels.  You start at the bottom and then build it up.  To add the next level, you scatter some food on the bottom of the new bin.  Here you can see the holes in the bottom of the bin.  This allows the worms to move up and down in the bin.

 Here is the worm bin with 2 levels.  You can see the “tap” at the bottom where you can harvest worm wee from.  The idea is that you keep adding bins to the top and slowly the worms migrate up and then you can take the bottom bin off and harvest the worm castings.  Then, put that bin on the top and keep rotating them bins from the bottom back up to the top.

I feed them a small amount of veggie scraps a couple of times a week.  When I am cutting up vegetables, I put some of the scraps in a small plastic container and then I put it in the freezer.  The freeze and thaw helps to give a head start to the decaying process.  I have read that one of the biggest problems with worm bins is feeding them too much.  From what I understand, the worms feed on the microorganisms that break down the food (not the actual food).  So, you don’t want too much food “rotting” at one time or that will cause problems.  
I started this bin at the beginning of January and I am no where near ready to add the next bin.  My point being, that this is going to take a while to really get going.  Worms need the temperature to be between 50-70 degrees.  This is going to make it impossible to keep worms outside in the cold or in the summer when it is super hot.  Unless this bin starts to really get going, I don’t see how this could really produce a lot of castings/worms…time will tell.  I guess you would have to have multiple bins and I am not that interested in being a worm farmer.  We will continue to play with this and see how it goes…
~Denise

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *