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Starting Your First Worm Farm Made So Simple Even Your Kids Can Do It!
Look no further…Get all the useful tips here to help you with starting your first worm farm! Just Follow the links on this page and you will get all the information you will ever need to start and maintain your first worm farming project.
Have you ever wondered what it takes to start a worm farm ?
The answer to this question is is not a lot. Worms are the easiest pets you could ever raise.
What other pet can you feed kitchen scraps and household trash to and they give you something valuable in return without a lot of effort on your part?
No other pet I could think of, Just worms.
Feed your worms, keep them moist and comfortable and after a couple months clean up after them and claim your prize like a great nutrient dense soil conditioner that will help grow beautiful healthy garden plants!
A worm farm can be a great D.I.Y. home project idea that the whole family can enjoy!
Below I have some simple tips that I have learned over the years that will make starting your first worm farm much easier.
Before you get started worm farming you might want to take a few minutes to consider why you are starting a worm farm.
Some may be looking for a good D.I.Y. project for kids to help teach them about responsibilities, this is a excellent project for that purpose.
Some might want to learn how to worm farm just to recycle their food scraps and live a more sustainable lifestyle while others may have a more long term financial goal in mind.
Worm composting systems are used to raise worms to get worm castings for yard and gardening purposes. This is the main goal for many people and this is the reason I started this blog to bring awareness to this sustainable process.
People may want to just start a low cost business to earn extra money raising composting worms or even fishing worms.
The sky is the limit on how small or large you want your worm farming project to go. With all that said lets take a look at some things to consider.
What Kind Of Worms Do You Need?
There are several different breeds of worms you can use for composting and
also for other purposes.
Red Wigglers and Large Red Worms (Blue Worms) are the most common breeds used for worm composting for the worm castings. You can put them in a worm bin and feed them your kitchen food scraps and they will be content for the most part.
The large red worms are a little more aggressive and will try to migrate out of the worm bin some times, while the red wigglers are more passive.
The larger worm breeds like European night crawlers, Canadian night crawlers and African night crawlers are the most popular large worm varieties and are also good composting worms but have to be raised a little different.
- African – Moderate to warm temperatures
- Canadian – Cool to moderate temperatures
- European – Cool to moderate temperatures
Night crawlers require a different food source, deep bins and need a variety of different climate conditions depending on the variety to thrive. These breeds are most commonly raised for fishing bait because of their size.
What Type Of Home Are You Going To Set Up For Your Worms?
There are a variety of different worm composting systems you can purchase or you can build your own. I have chose the plastic tote bins myself for indoor use. They are inexpensive easy to set up they don’t take up much room and worms like living in them.
Starting out I recommend these plastic totes at least around 18 to 20 gallon in size for a pound of worms to grow and have room to easily expand their herd size.
They are great starter bins and easy to expand your herd later just by adding more of these inexpensive bins.
Many people consider these bins an eyesore inside their homes, so at the bottom of this post I have added some links and am sure you can find a better looking worm farm for your home. Be sure to check them out!
The first time I raised composting worms several years ago, I built 3×4 wooden bins . My intentions back then were to start them off in my house and move them outside later to use the as outdoor worm bins.
The temperature spiked one morning from 80 degrees to 103 degrees in two hours before noon.
When I came home at noon that day all of my composting worms that I had living in a outdoor shed had turned to a slushy mess inside the bins.
I discovered after all the hype at the time about raising your worms outdoors, East Texas was not the place to raise worms outdoors. I lost 2 full bins that morning and have raised my worms indoors ever since.
The point here is to keep the worms at a moderate temperature from 40 to 90 degrees no more or less.
The wooden composting bins worked well but they were very heavy and I lost a lot of worms due to the lids not fitting tightly.
Wood Bins are best for outdoor use if you live in a stable climate on a larger scale.You can also use an old bathtub for a outdoor worm composting bin.
Visit our post D.I.Y Worm Farm for step by step instructions to set up a low cost worm composting bin for indoor and outdoor use.
What Do You Feed Your Worms?
When starting out with an indoor worm composting bin it is great to feed your kitchen food scraps to your red wiggler worms to get worm castings. This method works really well as long as you feed wisely.
Take small mounts of scraps at first to see how long it takes the worms to eat it. When the worms finish processing the scraps add some more scraps , It is that easy.
If you have added a batch of worms to your bin that are about the size of a softball for instance you should not feed anymore food scraps larger than a softball by volume at one time.
Please don’t make the mistake of loading your worm bin full of kitchen scraps at one time. This is not a healthy for your worms or the worm bin, but I see this all the time.
Loading up your bin with food scraps also attracts fruit flies and fungus gnats because the worms don’t have the capability of processing these large amounts and the food winds up rotting in your bin.
Fruit flies then come from adding too much food and feed on the rotting food. The flies lay eggs in your bin then you have maggots. Fungus gnats are attracted to the fungus on the rotting food and they are not easy to get rid of.
So control the amount of food you put into your bin like I have described above
to avoid these issues.
Covering your worm bedding and feeding areas with a couple of inches of damp shredded news paper and cardboard mix also helps control the moisture issues and limits chances of attracting fruit flies and fungus gnats.
If you are in the worm composting scene for the long haul you may want to make a compost pile in a corner of your back yard consisting of yard waste like leaves and grass clippings.
Add some excess kitchen scraps and coffee grounds to the pile as you get them. Do not add meat or dairy products because they tend to attract unwanted visitors to your compost pile. Let this pile break down over time and feed this into your indoor bin as bedding, The worms will love it. The worms will eat this much faster and produce more worm castings quicker for your plants.
Visit our How to Compost page to learn more about composting.
Composted manure is another great bedding for your outdoor worm bins but access to clean manure sources are getting hard to find so I recommend sticking with compost unless you have a reliable source of animal manure. Animal manures will need composting also before feeding back to your worms.
The Night Crawler breeds do require more depth for they like to burrow deeply and they rely on more of a grain and seed mixtures for feeding. Most feed them worm chow to and its reported to enhance growth and keep these worms fat and happy. Although, there are many types of home mixes you can make at home to save money that can be found all over the web.
I myself have not been into raising the night crawler breeds but am interested in doing so in the future . At that time I can gain more experience and will share what I learn with you.
Starting a worm farm can be one of the easiest most rewarding D.I.Y projects for the home available that rewards you for your efforts.
In summary raising worms will take a plan so to speak. Listed above are some things you need to know before diving in.
Worm composting can be done in a small area in an apartment or in large area the outdoors. Like raising every other type of livestock you will need to consider things like:
Do you have the…
- Time – Do you have the time to commit to raising and properly caring for your worms? I can tell you it doesn’t take very much time.Worms are the cleanest easiest pets I know of to raise.
- Money – Starting your first worm farm can be be very inexpensive. You can get everything you need if you follow the plan on this website for well under $100. You sure can’t start any other long term business for that kind of money.
- Resources – Most of he resources for raising composting worms are already available in most households. Some vegetable scraps and some shredded paper and cardboard…your ready to go!
Are you ready to commit to starting your first worm farm?
From experience I can tell you it does not take much room or money just the commitment to keep your stock healthy and they will reward you for it.
Be sure to follow the links and images on this page to find all the information needed for starting your first worm farm today!
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Be Sure To Check Out These Awesome Worm Farms And Accessories Below To Get Started today!