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Vermicomposting: Easy and Efficient Composting with Worms

By dave
August 22, 2011

Whether you live on a self-sufficient homestead or in an apartment in the city, you should consider keeping a bin of worms to turn your kitchen scraps into the best compost available. Here's how to get started.

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Name: New username - Crittergarden
Unexpectedly Green Pittsburgh (Zone 5b)
NEW USER NAME: Crittergarden
plantsANDpets
Aug 25, 2011 10:35 AM CST
Thanks for this.

I started a weed/worm bucket this year for the first time so I can move some worms from the leaf-littered back yard to the front yard that I am planting this fall after it's been under lava rocks with a sheet of plastic since I bought the house in 2003. (MAN what a long sentence that was!) I'm disappointed to hear that the worms from my yard may not be happy in the basement for the winte, but I think I'll bring a couple in anyway, just to test the possibility.

Do you know if I'd be courting any problems such as escape?
Decisions, decisions.
I tried a couple of usernames and have finally settled on:

crittergarden.

That's it, no more changes. I'm done. I will be crittergarden here, on Cubits, and when I renew my Dave's Garden subscription on Noveber 4, I'll be crittergarden over there, too. DONE!~~~ UNTIL ONE HAS LOVED AN ANIMAL, PART OF THEIR SOUL REMAINS UNAWAKENED ~~~
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 25, 2011 10:40 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I really don't know, as I've never tried this before. It can't hurt to try, in my opinion, as long as you are prepared for the possible disappointment of failure. If it doesn't work out, you can always order some red wigglers.
Name: New username - Crittergarden
Unexpectedly Green Pittsburgh (Zone 5b)
NEW USER NAME: Crittergarden
plantsANDpets
Aug 27, 2011 11:11 AM CST
That was my plan - unless you advised me not to!
I'm SO excited about having them in the basement in the winter.
As long as they're not all OVER the basement from where kitty will bring them upstairs.....

I'll let you know if it leads to trouble.

If I end up getting red wigglers, I assume they can go into the ground in summer and then survive the winter out there....
Decisions, decisions.
I tried a couple of usernames and have finally settled on:

crittergarden.

That's it, no more changes. I'm done. I will be crittergarden here, on Cubits, and when I renew my Dave's Garden subscription on Noveber 4, I'll be crittergarden over there, too. DONE!~~~ UNTIL ONE HAS LOVED AN ANIMAL, PART OF THEIR SOUL REMAINS UNAWAKENED ~~~
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 27, 2011 11:26 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I'd keep the red wigglers in the worm bin all winter long. Putting them into the ground means you might lose them!
Name: New username - Crittergarden
Unexpectedly Green Pittsburgh (Zone 5b)
NEW USER NAME: Crittergarden
plantsANDpets
Aug 30, 2011 9:33 AM CST
Well, I was hoping I could put them in the ground in spring and the next winter they'd just "go deep" like the native worms do.
If I just divide them into more and more bins, I'll eventually have to go into the vermicomposting supply business!
Decisions, decisions.
I tried a couple of usernames and have finally settled on:

crittergarden.

That's it, no more changes. I'm done. I will be crittergarden here, on Cubits, and when I renew my Dave's Garden subscription on Noveber 4, I'll be crittergarden over there, too. DONE!~~~ UNTIL ONE HAS LOVED AN ANIMAL, PART OF THEIR SOUL REMAINS UNAWAKENED ~~~
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 30, 2011 10:48 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Or use the extra worms for fishing. Smiling
Name: Sheila F
Fort Worth TX (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member Tip Photographer I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Texas Butterflies Garden Art
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Sheila_FW
Aug 30, 2011 10:53 AM CST
Or send them to your gardening friends! Hurray! Thumbs up Whistling
Name: New username - Crittergarden
Unexpectedly Green Pittsburgh (Zone 5b)
NEW USER NAME: Crittergarden
plantsANDpets
Sep 13, 2011 11:06 AM CST
Smiling
Decisions, decisions.
I tried a couple of usernames and have finally settled on:

crittergarden.

That's it, no more changes. I'm done. I will be crittergarden here, on Cubits, and when I renew my Dave's Garden subscription on Noveber 4, I'll be crittergarden over there, too. DONE!~~~ UNTIL ONE HAS LOVED AN ANIMAL, PART OF THEIR SOUL REMAINS UNAWAKENED ~~~
Name: aka GardenQuilts
Pocono Mountains, PA
Andi
Jun 9, 2013 1:57 PM CST
Are red wigglers the worms that are displacing the native worms?

You may want to check the fishing section at Walmart. They have worms in tupperware in the fridge. My friend bought some when I first moved here to get the soil started. I remember reading that one of the types we got were not supposed to be released into the soil because of the native worm populations. Oops. If they escaped my current place, they would end up in someone else's garden or the graveyard so they shouldn't cause too much damage.

I am going to try this after I finish moving. I'll have lots of empty cardboard boxes and some bins...Do you think a kitty litter square bin would be too small?

I thought worms were worms....
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 11, 2013 7:24 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I've not heard that red wigglers are displacing native worms, so I can't speak to that at all.

A think a kitty litter bin would be small but it would definitely work for a while. Eventually you'll want to step up to a larger container but it's easy to move the worms at that time. Smiling
Name: aka GardenQuilts
Pocono Mountains, PA
Andi
Jun 23, 2013 4:18 AM CST
At the moment, every available container including every kitty litter bin that I could find is full of plants because I am moving! I have quite a few worms moving with me in various containers. I'll figure something out when I get there.

FYI, our local Walmart had night crawler and red wiggler worms in the sporting center. They have them in a little fridge, you have to ask at the counter for them.
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
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crittergarden
Oct 19, 2013 12:44 PM CST
I had forgotten all about this.
I just released all my worms for the winter, too.
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Name: Carl Boro
Milpitas, CA (Zone 10b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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coboro
Dec 13, 2014 1:55 PM CST
I have read a number of articles that list earthworms as one of the top three non native invasive species in the United States

In the forests of Minnesota, the forest litter is naturally 7" or 8" deep. Plants have adapted to sprouting and growing in this environment. There were no earthworms in this area.There are places along rivers and lakes where fishermen have dumped their extra red wigglers. The worms are slowly spreading and eating the litter to nothing. The native plants can't sprout and grow in the litterless environment. The forests are changing. No one knows the final outcome.

Here's a link to an article from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/invasives/terrestrialanimals/eart...

Bottom line: don't just dump your extra worms out until you check.
Carl

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