I have been working on a simple means to harvest worm compost off the very bottom for over 2 years now, and have been testing my innovation for the last year. So far, I am amazed at how easy this is to operate, and how well it works. It is also very easy to build (though it was painstaking to get all the parts engineered to the proper dimension to work effectively and yet get it all from one sheet of plywood! You can find more product information and download instructions for the Easy Roll worm bin here.
- Worm Composting is the most environmentally friendly way to recycle food and other organic wastes. Each day worms can eat more than half their weight in food. A few thousand worms can consume a few pounds of food weekly.
- There are more micro-organisms in castings or vermicompost compared to regular composting.
- Finished product is finer and not as course as hot compost.
- Locks nutrients and moisture into the soil, and therefore makes nutrients and water more bioavailable.
- Promotes disease and pathogen resistance for plants.
- Provides various plant growth and germination hormones such as ‘auxins.’ Humic acid and mycorrhiza fungus helps root systems grow strong.
- Worm Composting is a great way to get the kids and family involved in learning about science, conservation, the environment, and plants.
The Red Worm also goes by the name Red Wiggler, and is the most common composting worm. This is due to the fact that it has characteristics which make it most suitable and adaptable for this purpose. Here are some quick facts about the red worm.
- Maximum reproduction under ideal conditions: 3.8 cocoons per adult per week; 83.2% hatching success rate; 3.3 hatchlings per cocoon. Net reproduction of 10.4 young per adult per week. Under ideal conditions, can double in population every 90 days.
- Maximum growth rate under ideal conditions: 32-73 days to cocoon hatch; 53-76 days to sexual maturity; 85-149 days from egg to maturity.
- Temperature requirements (°F): Minimum 38°, Maximum 95°, Ideal range 70-80°
- A sexually mature worm will have bands’ and this band or ring is referred to as the clitellum. Each worm changes sex many times, but they are not self fertile. When two worms mate, they each go off and deposit egg capsules containing up to 20 young. The average survival rate is between three and four per capsule. The newly deposited egg will look like a small lemon, and be pale in color; as the blood supply increases, the color will deepen, and can be almost black before hatching