Worm composting or Vermicomposting is getting more popular because compost worms or red wigglers increase the speed of composting and produce high value of vermicompost for plants from your green waste and paper waste.
I have been working with red wigglers scientifically and practically for over twenty years and would like to share my experience. Vermicomposting is simple close system and can be easily started by following 3 steps.
1. Make or Get a Worm Bin
Two plastic boxes in stalk may be used. Both containers should be about 30 cm deep with many holes at the sides, lid and bottom. About one square foot of surface area is needed for each pound of kitchen or green waste per week. The healthy worms will migrate from the first container (below) to the second container (top) after the first one is full. The worm castings are ready to be harvested at the first container.
2. Prepare Bedding
Bedding can be made of mature compost (never soil) plus shredded paper, untreated sawdust, peat moss, leaf mold, or coco coir. Ideally if you squeeze a handful of moist bedding you should only be able to squeeze a few drops of water (70-75% moisture). If you can squeeze more than a couple of drops out then it is too wet. And then innoculate with some worm castings as the microbes starter. Worms actually consume bedding as well as the kitchen vegetable wastes, start from the first container.
3. Add Composting Worms or Red Wigglers
Red wigglers (Eisenia andrei or E. fetida) are the most common worm to use for vermicomposting. To determine the number of worms needed to populate a bin, figure two handfuls of worms or about one pound of worms including their bedding (~500 worms) for each pound of kitchen vegetable wastes produced. The feeding is about once a week, it depends how fast the worms adapt with the new environment.
Let’s start doing vermicomposting to save the Planet and any experience to be shared is greatly appreciated. Bintoro Gunadi www.burnabyredwigglers.com