Introduction: How to Compost With Worms
I'm a big fan of worm composting so I thought I'd upload a quick instructable about how to compost with worms.
It's a lot easier than you think and if you want to you can make your own wormbin rather than pay for one, it's really pretty straightforward.
Step 1: Set Up Your Wormbin
There are 2 ways that you can set up a wormbin.
I've done both and they both work well if you do some research and follow the basic worm keeping rules that you can find in the next couple of steps.
Just for some background, a commercial wormbin will last longer and will look better than one that you make yourself, but if you've already got a wormbin set up then making one yourself is pretty straightforward.
Making a wormbin will help your worms reproduce which means that they'll be able to compost more of your kitchen scraps this is because worms naturally regulate their numbers based on how much food and space they have access to.
Step 2: Put Your Wormbin in the Shade
Worms like cool and dark conditions. So it’s best to keep your wormbin in the shade if possible, and if you can’t then it’s useful to cover your wormbin in a reflective material so that the heat is not trapped in your wormbin (otherwise your worms could die).
Step 3: Add 'bedding' to Your Wormbin and Add Your Worms
The bedding for your worms is a material for your worms to first start wriggling around in.
You can use coco coir or shredded newspaper and I've heard other people recommend some other materials (but I've only used coco coir and newspaper myself so I'm not going to recommend anything that I haven't tried).
You'll want to make sure that the bedding is damp before adding your worms.
Step 4: Feed Your Worms
After the worms have eaten through most of their bedding you can start feeding them, worms can eat up to half of their own weight in scraps but most people seem to get carried away and feed their worms too much, the best advice is to feed them slowly and work your way up to adding lots more food when they've grown and multiplied, otherwise your wormbin could become acidic.
Worms will eat most scraps, but for best results you’ll want to stick to a couple of basic rules.
You can feed your worms:
tea leaves, coffee grounds,
dried out egg shells
You shouldn’t feed your worms:
meat, fish, dairy products,
anything with cooking oil in it,
citrus, onion, chilli or other spicy foods.
Step 5: Check on the Conditions in Your Wormbin
Your worm bin should be slightly moist but not too wet. Also, a well kept worm bin won't smell, so if your wormbin starts to smell then you might want to take a look at this post ( why your wormbin might smell ).
Step 6: Collect the Worm Castings
Once your wormbin is up and running you'll want to collect the castings.
Once your worms have eaten all of the food in their tray they will crawl up into the next tray.
To collect the castings take the worm bin tray that you want to take the castings from and leave it in the sun for 10-15 minutes.
Afterwards, you'll be able to scrape off and collect the top layer of castings because the worms would have buried deeper into the tray (because worms don't like being exposed to light).
Repeat this process until there are only worms in your tray, once you're done just throw the remaining worms into the top tray of your wormbin.
And that's it! Your worm bin is up and running. By the way, if you want to learn how to grow plants with worm tea then check out another one of my instructables here.