We Get Greener Kit Cassingham & her Bigger Half

Lessons About Composting With Worm Bins

I'm approaching two years of worm composting. Lessons can be easy or hard, depending on your attitude, and the cost of your investment. My investment has been relatively inexpensive, and my attitude is open to learning, so my lessons have been easy. I feel sorry for some of the worms though.

In the video I made and posted about feeding my worms I show how I turn the compost as I feed them. I didn't understand the value of that when I shared my techniques with you. But, a year later I very much do appreciate that.

Last fall I had to dump one bin of compost because it had gotten too wet, the worms had drowned, and the compost was putrefying. Ick. The area where I dumped that mess is much happier, but sadly I have less compost for my greenhouse now (the worms have multiplied to fill in that gap).

This winter the sub-zero days and nights we experienced, colder than anything I remember since moving here, caused the garage to fall below 40 degrees, the minimal temperature my red compost worms are happy and productive. That cold garage temperature caused me to bring my worms indoors again. This winter that action opened the door for more learning on my part.

First, because I don't wash my produce skins I'm getting eggs hatching, introducing fruit flies, and other flying things, into the house. Our window ledges looked like killing fields, littered with dead critters. When that happens out in the garage I don't notice, or care, so don't feel the need to take that step. I guess my new winter procedure will be that skins will get washed to remove those eggs so we don't have the extra cleaning challenge.

Second, I realized it's the thorough turning of the active compost, as I add new scraps, that fluffs it to introduce more air so the matter can dry out better, keeping the worms in a more conducive condition for turning my food scraps to compost. Happier worms means faster compost. I like that.

Since I haven't been turning the compost enough I now have two active bins. Time for me to go turn the "old" active bin so I can create compost for my summer greenhouse beds!

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