I got in a conversation with some friends that are just now starting to get into planting their own organic gardens. We were discussing composting when it dawned on me that none of them were familiar with vermicomposter (worm composters). I shared with them the benefits that I have found having both types of composters in my yard. One to make fresh batch of regular compost, and the other to make a fresh batch of Humus(worm droppings) that can also be used to make tea.
So what, you may ask, is vermicomposting and how does it work?
Well, “vermi” is the Latin word for worm, and worms like to feed on slowly decomposing organic materials (e.g., vegetable scraps). The “end” product, called castings, is full of beneficial microbes and nutrients, and makes a great plant fertilizer. So, vermicomposting is the practice of using worms to make compost simply by feeding them your food waste.
The reason vermicomposting is becoming popular is because worms are very efficient eating machines. They eat over half their body weight in organic matter per day!
If you look online you will notice a bunch of different companies selling their own version of a worm bin, however If you look around your house you may be able to make one yourself for next to nothing.
To make your own vermicomposter you need a few things:
1.Two 10gallon Plastic Container bins (Dark Colors are better, Worms do not like the light)
2.A sharp object (knife or scissors or drill to poke holes)
3.A couple of bricks
5.Worms (Red Wingers)
6.Spray Water Bottle With Water in it
1.)First take one plastic container and set it aside. This will be your reservoir.
2.)Second take the other plastic container and poke holes on the bottom of the container. 1 hole every square inch should do.
3.)Next poke holes on the top piece of the container. 1 whole every square inch is fine.
4.)Place bricks inside the container with NO holes (Reservoir). Lay bricks on their side, this is to give the top container space to let the worm tea drip out.
5.)Place containers with holes on top of the bricks inside the Reservoir container (with no holes)
6.)Place bedding at bottom of container with holes( I used a cocoa mix, cardboard clipping work fine as well. Anything that will retain moister, try to avoid anything glossy)
7.)Spray bedding with water from water bottle so that it is damp but not drenched.
8.)Add Red Winger worms
9.)Add vegetable clippings, and shredded junk mail
10.)Spray with water bottle to make moist
9.)Place damp Newspaper on top to keep in moist.
10.)Put the lid with holes on top of the container. Place the lid with no holes on the bottom of your reservoir bin for a stand if you like.
If you get this far, keep adding your worm food daily and wait atleast three months for your worms to thier thing. One you get a good batch of Humus, let me know and I will tell you how to sperate the worms from the humus so that you can add it to your garden.