What is Vermicomposting and How To Use It In Your Garden

Hi I’m Tricia an organic gardener. Worm
castings or worm manure has five to eleven times more nitrogen phosphorus,
and potassium than regular soil and worm compost has more micro nutrients
than regular aerobic compost. Today we’re going to start a worm bin to
unleash the power of worms. To get started you’re gonna need a bin, and that can be a plastic bin, wooden
box or a specially-designed worm bin like this Can-O-Worms. Worms eat food scraps so the size of your bin is
gonna depend on how much food scraps you can generate within a week. After one week of collecting then go
ahead and weigh them, you want one square foot of surface area per pound of food
scraps. The depth of the bin should be about
eight to twelve inches. Whatever kind of bin you use make sure that
there’s holes in it because the worms need oxygen. If you’re making your own worm bin make sure it’s not sitting on the ground. It needs to be moved up away from the
ground so that you can put a collection tray underneath. I’m using this Can-O-Worms bin which has
its own built in collection tray. Shredded newspaper, cardboard or coconut coir are a couple of great bedding options. You want to moisten your bedding you want it to be wet like a damp sponge. We’re going to start building our first
working tray. So the first thing I’m going to do is put down some newspaper and that way the bedding material won’t
fall through the little holes. So now you just want to start adding your bedding material about two-thirds of the way up to the
top of the tray, make sure that it’s nice and fluffy, and then you can add a little bit of
builders sand or coffee grounds or something to give it a little bit of grit to help the worms digest. Put your worm bin in a sheltered,
shady area a, garage works great. Worms can tolerate temperatures between
forty and eighty degrees but they do their best work between fifty five and
seventy five degrees. Now were ready to add the beautiful little
creatures, the worms. Your garden soil variety earthworm
isn’t the type of worm you need for your bin. Worm composting is done by Brandling
worms, European night crawlers and Red worms. These red worms prefer an aged compost or manure type of environment, regular earthworms from the garden won’t survive in a worm bin. To start a new worm bin get about a pound of composting worms, that’s about a thousand worms. Spread them on the bedding and they should burrow in quickly to get
away from the light. Start feeding your worms slowly, don’t
give them too much at once. Feed them about one to two times a week to
begin with, if the food starts to stink before it is eaten back off
on the feeding. Bury your food scraps an inch or so under the bedding changing location each time. Worms like all kinds of organic matter
including tea bags and coffee, but there are some things that you
shouldn’t feed your worms. Anything that has insecticides on it, fresh manure or meat or dairy, and no spicy foods like garlic or onions. A little bit of citrus is ok but not a
lot. You wanna make sure that your worm
bin stays moist and a good way to do that is put a moistened piece of
burlap over your worms. As your watering your worms to keep them nice
and moist the water is going to penetrate through the worm
castings and end up in a little collection tray here. After time goes by you’ll be able to
turn on this spigot on this Can-O-Worms bin and get a rich liquid
fertilizer. Once the worms have consumed most of the
bedding and the scraps you’ll see it starts to look like a nice rich worm
compost. Then it’s time to create your next layer and this layer does not require any newspaper as
a bottom layer it just requires some bedding material and some food scraps, and what’s gonna happen is your worms
are going to find their way up through these little holes and begin the process all over again. Then you can harvest the first tray of compost. The art of raising worms is called
vermiculture. Hi babies, how are you doing? So adopt some worms and grow organic for life.

29 thoughts on “What is Vermicomposting and How To Use It In Your Garden

  1. this one is great, but it works better if you use it in a slightly different way than that which is proposed in the manual : Only bedding materials in the lower tray, and just the thickest ones ; this way you can harvest 10s of times worm tea before you have to take it apart and harvest the solid compost. And you don't have to clean the lower receiver with the aeration holes, which was a chore with the regular method. I have 4, this one has the best design.

  2. keeping the moisture under control is key.. there will always be some runoff, but having large amounts of "tea" is a sign of too much moisture

  3. Interesting, I've never heard of nettle tea, I'll have to look that up. Chickens are quite efficient converters of kitchen scraps to soil enriching fertilizer too!

  4. Used coffee grounds. Mmm I'm sure delicious figs will follow, Brown Turkey is a great cultivar.

  5. It was so nice to see you talk to your worms. I had such a nice worm bin but then it was invaded by water moths that killed each and every one of them in less than a week. I was devastated. I intend to start a new one soon and maybe I will get a bin like you have. It looks like moths won't be able to get into it. I live in Israel and never saw water moths before coming here to live. They also bite. I do love worm composting though.

  6. great video. I live in las vegas and it gets real hot. how bad would the smell be inside my house if I keep the scraps at a minimum

  7. there's a much much more efficient way to run these things! (providing you have put a lot of cardboard and stuff in the lower tray) : Every 10 days you flood the top tray with a full gallon of water, and harvest the very rich worm tea from the tap. You equate worm tea with the undigested juices from a badly run bin : no comparison, different color (brownish water/black), different smell (rotten vegetables/forest), different value for plants (intoxicating/great booster). Been at it 12 years…

  8. How disheartening! Poor worms, I'm sorry to hear that, it's such a horrible feeling when something like that is wiped out right in front of you. I hope your next worm bin keeps those moths at bay.

  9. If you give the worms the right amount of scraps, enough for them to eat at a time, and don't over water the bin, then it won't smell at all. Careful with the high temperatures though, temperatures over 94°F will start to kill off the worms.

  10. ….been at it 35 years.. trust me the leacheate that you are harvesting is not that great .. it's anerobic gunk…. building an areated brew setup using castings is awesome and makes a fantastic "tea".. harvesting the leached out drippings is considerably inferior..

  11. put those castings to work by brewing an aerated tea, feeding the microbes … there is no comparison in richness and value to your plants.. not to mention if your using chlorinated tap water you have essentially killed any microbial diversity.

  12. I agree about chlorinated water (but just letting it rest a few hours has the chlore evaporate). Yes I know you can do some great stuff with either a pump and an airstone, or an oxydator, and add some molasses to the mix, it works really well…

  13. But the way I say works too, and it spares you so much time and effort, you would be amazed (Yes I know that you know your stuff, I've watched 3 of your vids, but you can still try nex stuff no?). Of course if you feed and then flood you will get leachate, but the right way is : having a large vigorous population, feeding infrequently, and just before the next feeding, you flood…You gain so much time, it's unbelievable! I agree to all you say about leachate, but this is something else I swear!

  14. how long do you keep the warms and what do you do with them always just keep them in the bin? Where does one get that bin and get you just get the worms from fishing stores?

  15. The worms will live and reproduce in the bin. Nightcrawlers can work, but brandling worms are the preferred type. Both the bin and the worms can be purchased from us, I've put the link in the description. Have fun with vermicomposting!

  16. Avoid using redworms if you live near any hardwood forests as this can destroy the forests. http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/invasives/terrestrialanimals/earthworms/index.html

  17. Hi I am really enjoying your channel. I have question about compost. I've been composting for about five years my garden has grown pretty well over the years. This year my compost has been infested with black soldier flies. From what research I've done they are good for decomposing compost faster. They can compost what used to take months, in just a few weeks they are incredible. However there are millions of them, what are your thoughts on this and what do you think I should do?

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