Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Vermicomposting Bin: Current Status > Almost Harvest Time

In 10 days I will have been vermicomposting for 3 months. At that point I think I'm going to harvest the vermicompost from my bin to use on my balcony garden and houseplants. The overall level of the materials in the bin have reduced by about half, indicating the worms have done a good job breaking down their newspaper/hay/soil bedding mixture into castings. There's a plethera of baby worms in the bin, which will be more adapted to the conditions of my bin. I will keep these when I harvest and will likely have to take some adults out of the bin to make sure it isn't overpopulated.
I have yet to decide what method of harvesting I am going to use. I will probably end up doing the method where I will divvy out the bin's contents into several small cone shaped piles on a large plastic sheet, the worms will escape the light by burying to the bottom of their piles and I'll scoop off the tops of the piles (will document harvesting process to come). I was originally hoping I could do the method whereby you feed the worms on one side of the bin for a week or two, and then harvest the castings from the vacated side, putting in new bedding and repeating for the other side, but I have been doing the rotating pocket feeding method, and I always seem to find worms wherever I pull back the bedding - they don't seem to stay just around the food source for me.

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