Why compost? Well modern farming methods have worked soil hard without letting them lie fallow. To let a field lie fallow is a practice that can be traced back to the middle ages where would plant 2/3 of his land and leave one fallow or, let it rest. This helped the soil regain the nutrients it had lost in previous years. But as this is no longer done, soil wears out and becomes useless, then is developed, and chances are that the soil of your garden sucks. So how do you regain these lost nutrients? Well your food has the stuff necessary, but how do you get it out of your food? The answer, worm composting! Of coarse at first it may seem that composting worms are just handy little tools, like the ones at Lee Valley, that you buy for a near ridiculous price and then use to expand your hobby. In fact, that’s what I thought when I first encountered the compost worm, it was some gross slimy thing and I wanted no part in caring for it. But then I started to look at worms in greater detail, and I realised that worms are much more then neat little tools. Worms can turn your rotten veg into rich nutritious soil much faster than ordinary composting with other benefits! The object of the following text is to help you acquire a suitable worm bin and start vermicomposting in your home.
To begin construction, you will need:
-Two deep Rubbermaid bins, and one lid
-some fine mesh
To build: take one bin with no lid, and let the second bin nest in it, this bin must have holes in the bottom, and all the way around just below the rim, put your mesh over the bottom ones. Do not drill holes anywhere else! Put the lid on top and there you go! A worm palace.
After you have built it, your worm bin will be ready for its inhabitants. At one pound for around fifty dollars (Can.) worms can be quite expensive, and I would like to tell you that you will not be spending any more money, but if you want your worms to be happy, that would not be true, so, I will state that there are lots of ways to decrease your spending, but not eliminate it entirely. Presently though, I must bring the topic back to worms you will need Eisenia fetida or, Red wigglers, you will most likely refer to them as Red Wigglers, this is fine, what is not fine is if a worm dealer cannot give you the Latin name, also I do not recommend buying worms online as you could unknowingly purchase worms unsuitable for composting or worms in generally bad condition.
In short go to the dealer’s house, or place of business, and see how he keeps his worms, and what kind they are, before you buy them. To set your worms up in their new home, you will need some bedding, dead leaves are good, but you can also use ripped up newspaper or machine shredded paper if you have an office job. Put the bedding in the uppermost bin, do nothing to the lower one, than pour water into the bin until it is wet but not soaked, then put your worms in the top bin.
Here’s some stuff to put in your worm bin: vegetable and fruit scraps, bread, pasta, coffee grounds and filters, teabags, and dead plant matter from houseplants. When you put stuff in, bury it, and then add fresh bedding (you should always have a large supply of this) to harvest separate into small piles and sort through with your hands (there is probably more to come on harvesting as there are many ways to do it) and that’s it for basic worm composting so long for now.