Several months ago, we decided to reduce our waste here at the store. We already recycle cans, bottles, wood, metal, cardboard, paper products, packing material, Styrofoam, and plastic, but we didn’t really have a good place outside to put compost.
Enter the worms! Kelsey, our warehouse guru and leader of the worm clan, took a big plastic tub with no lid and drilled holes in the short sides through which to put long dowels. (This will all make sense, I promise). Then, she got a lidded bin of the same size, drilled a couple of small holes in the bottom, and sunk it onto the dowels. The dowels elevate the second bin and allow for collection of worm tea – the coveted liquid waste that is an ultra concentrated fertilizer. The second bin is layered with shredded paper or recycled paper towels, worms, food, and dirt. On the top, place a layer of wet cardboard “to keep the worms moist and the fruit flies out and the smells in” and put on the lid. Voile – vermaculture.
The worms hang out in our back warehouse. They are fairly low maintenance – Kelsey turns the dirt to move them around, replaces the wet cardboard when it gets dry or the worms eat it, and buries the food so it won’t smell bad if the worms don't eat it fast enough. She harvests the worm tea to pour on our plants and will begin to harvest the worm dirt for the same purpose. We now have two worm bins because we have very happy worms and therefore a population explosion and also for dirt harvesting purposes. You can’t put worm dirt that still has food in it on your plants, so while one set of worms is getting fed, the other set is eating up what they have until the dirt can be harvested and then they switch.
This project is so easy, anyone could have a worm bin of their own. Come in and take a look at our bins. You can also talk to us about their progress and get tips for making vermaculture part of your life.