Worm farming is a great way to recycle your kitchen and food garbage. Worms will eat almost everything of your kitchen’s waste and convert them into quality fertilizers. The output fertilizer created from your worm farm is great for garden soil and potted as well as indoor plants. The fertilizer is great for a vegetable patch as well if you have one in your backyard.
For a small scale worm farming project, all you need is box with holes at the bottom to allow excess water to drain and bedding materials. Newspapers, leaves, and even cardboard are good materials to create layers of bedding in the box. The bedding should be a little moist when placed inside the container. Don’t wet it too much just sprinkle with some water. Place your red or tiger worms inside the container and follow it up with scraps of food from your kitchen. Just start off with a small amount of food and increase the amount as your farm grows bigger.
It would be best to know your worms when you’re starting your project. For worm farming, earthworms are not the best worms to use. Red, tiger, or compost worms are the most ideal for farming and creating castings for fertilizers. These types are more adaptive in living in enclosed containers and are good in digesting organic matter which is what you’re going to fed them, kitchen scraps.
Castings are not the only product of your farm. The water that comes out from the drain or holes of your container is a great liquid fertilizer as well. Some would customize their containers and place collecting basins underneath the holes to collect the liquid that passes through. Believe it or not, when worm castings and water residue are used as fertilizers, flowers tend to bloom earlier. When used in a vegetable patch, the produce are much better and some would attest that the vegetables themselves are tastier.
Worm casting is technically called vermicompost and the process of creating it is referred to as vermicomposting. This is already an established field and there are experts in this area as well as commercially available resources where you can get materials like worm farm containers and supply of worms.
After several months, the worms should have created some suitable castings on the top layer. A good time to harvest the casting would when its almost full. There are several techniques in harvesting the castings. One way would be to open the lid and expose the container to light. The worms are quite sensitive to light and by allowing a significant amount of light to hit thee surface of the container, the worms will burrow deeper into the container. You can then scrape the castings after you notice that worms are no longer visible on the surface.
Other people place food on one side of the container and allow the worms to move into that area. After a few weeks, the worms will move into the area and then you can scraped off the castings left on the other side.
You worm farm should constitute a regular diet of fruits and vegetables. Do not feed them citrus fruits for this will make the container and castings acidic which is not good for the plants or for the farm. Egg shells, leaves, paper and shredded and soaked cardboards are good food for your worms. Adding dirt into the containers is a good idea as well as long as everything is done in moderation.