Earthworms & Mulch - Knowledgebase Question

San Ramon, CA
Question by hockeyrose
January 10, 2001
Is Redwood mulch considered vegetable organic matter to encourage red earthworms to survive and improve soil?

Answer from NGA
January 10, 2001


The most basic definition of organic matter is any plant material that was once alive but is now in a state of decomposition. So yes, redwood mulch is organic matter. Red worms are also called manure worms (they're commonly found in horse and cow manure). Earthworms are gray-colored worms that live in the soil. Both kinds of worms are beneficial in the garden. To encourage earthworms, provide organic matter and moisture. To encourage red worms, pile used coffee grounds on the soil (somehow they're especially attracted to coffee grounds!), or start a vegetable-scrap compost pile. Use only scraps (apple and carrot peelings for example, and keep oils, fats and meat, fish or chicken parts out. The veggies will attract red worms which will feed on the veggies, helping to turn them into nutrient-rich compost. Hope this answers your question!

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