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(en) US, Minneapolis, DAYBREAK #6 - DIY Worms by Amy

Date Wed, 01 Jun 2005 08:21:04 +0300

Worms: they’re not just for eating when you think no one likes
you. They’re also great little munchers themselves. A pound
of redworms can eat up to five pounds of kitchen waste a week. So
if you want to compost but don’t have space for a backyard bin,
enlist worms as your compost helpers.
First you need a box. Worms like warmth, darkness, and
dampness, so keep that in mind when preparing their home. It
should be roughly 12x24x36”, with lots of air holes. It can be
plastic or wood, it’s up to you, but it should keep out light as
much as possible. Then shred a bunch of newspaper, add a
handful of dirt (it aids digestion), and get it damp. The bin should
be about half full with bedding. It’s also not a bad idea to poke
air holes in the bottom of the box, and then prop it up with a tray
underneath. Any drips you catch can be used as fertilizer too.

Now you need worms. A pound of redworms (about 1,000)
can be ordered over the internet for about $25, depending on the
site. You want Eisenia foetida (red wriggler) or Lumbricus rubellus
worms. Worms multiply pretty fast (they can double their
population every 90 days), so it’s not a bad idea to buy a pound
of worms and split them up with a friend.

Your next step is to add your kitchen scraps. You can feed
your worms basically the same things you would throw in a regular
compost pile: fruit and vegetable scraps, grains, coffee grounds and
tea leaves, breads, and crushed egg shells. Don’t feed them
any meat or dairy products or oils. The smaller you chop your
kitchen wastes, the faster your little worms can chow through

Finally, it’s harvest time! When most of the bedding
has been eaten, move the food, the bedding and the worms all to
one side. Then add new bedding and food on the other side. The
worms will migrate over to the fresh side, leaving you free to
remove the castings (worm poo) from the older side. Just be sure
to leave the worms behind!
Daybreak is an anarchist tabloid put out from Minneapolis.

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