There is perhaps no greater joy than when the springtime arrives and you plant your first seeds in the garden. In order to nurture your plants next spring, you will likely invest in a variety of fertilizers and compost soil. However, did you know that this winter you can prepare for the spring season by composting in your home? Perhaps you have been deterred from composting due to the moldy, mildewy growth your compost pile seems to rapidly become. If you live in a small space and you don’t have a big backyard, finding a place to compost can be difficult. The good news is that with the help of some wriggly friends, you can compost in any home, any time of the year. Read on to learn more about using worms to compost in this month’s Saginaw gardening tips.
How Vermiposting Works
Using worms to compost organic materials is also referred to as vermiposting. Vermiposting is a simple concept. You utilize worms’ natural ability to turn organic matter into rich soil. The best part about it is that creating your own vermiposting bin is simple, inexpensive, and can be done even if you live in a small apartment.
To begin creating your own composting bin, you can either purchase a pre-made vermiposting bin or craft your own using a plastic tub. You will need some airflow to the bin, but you will also need to ensure that any small air holes are covered with mesh to prevent your worms from escaping. Next, you will fill your plastic bin with lots of shredded paper and a little bit of non-contaminated soil. You can use almost any shredded paper, but it is best to avoid glossy, heavily inked paper. Finally, gather some organic food scraps to place in the bin as the first meal for your new worms. Once you have their future home set up, purchase a pound of red wrigglers and place them in their new abode.
Once your worms arrive in their new home, they will get to work eating organic materials and creating rich compost. It really is as simple as that.
What To Feed Your Worms
The wonderful thing about vermiposting is that you can cut down on waste in your home. Collect food scraps throughout the week, as well as new paper bedding, and feed your worms once a week. Your worms can compost most of your produce food scraps, although onions should be avoided. Do not add meats or fats to the bin as red wrigglers are not meat eaters. Eggshells, however, are a great addition and will cut down on any acidity that builds up from fruit scraps. Some people even puree their compost in a blender to help make the eating process easier for their worms.
Harvesting Your Fresh Compost
Over the winter months, you will notice an increasing amount of compost in your bin as your worms get to work. You will also notice that your worms continue to multiply. In order to harvest your compost, simply switch to feeding your worms on only one side of the bin. They will naturally start to migrate to this food source, leaving you with a worm-free pile of compost. Add this compost to planters and gardens to enjoy the rich nutrients your worms have left behind.
For further information on vermiposting, visit the EPA’s website and read what they have to say about this amazing form of composting. Feel free to stop by for further gardening tips in Saginaw at Abele Greenhouse & Garden Center.