how to do vermicompost at home

How to Do Vermicompost at Home

Introduction

Vermicomposting is a natural process of reusing your organic waste and converting it into valuable fertilizer. Environmentalists consider vermicomposting to be more efficient than composting because the red worms (vermiculture) can eat up to 100 times their own weight in solid waste every day. With its vitality in agriculture, there is a need to know how to do vermicompost at home.

In addition, once finished, one cubic foot of vermicompost yields about 350 pounds of plant-nutrient-rich fertilizer out of which 70% is available for immediate use by plants as opposed to 35% from other commonly used fertilizers like chemical manures.

The key to safe and efficient home-based composting is using a good container. Inexpensive bins can be as simple as hay bales or wooden pallets, but sometimes the best available material is actually an old portable plastic playpen. Hence we have the best guide  on learning how to make your own composting bins and getting compost from them.

Vermicomposting is suitable for all kinds of residential areas including high-rise apartments and busy cities. The best thing about Vermicomposting is that you don’t need a plot of land or your own garden to practice it. It is an excellent way to recycle food wastes in the kitchen and yard waste in the backyard.

Not only it helps us to reduce waste, but also generates compost that can be used for indoor, as well as outdoor purposes like you, can use it on potted plants, in vegetable gardens and flower bed too.

To start using vermicomposting at home you will need to set up a simple worm farm. Though there are many DIY options available over the Internet it’s better if you dig deep into this subject before setting up one at home. The best way to do so is by learning from experts.

Lucky for you, we have compiled a complete DIY for you of how to do vermicompost at home. But first, let’s take a look at the things you will need.

Before stating Vermicomposting there are some of the pros and cons of vermicomposting you need to know, but a few cons can be prevented if you properly maintain and take care of your system.

What You Will Need

There are some basics things that you will require for you to know how to do vermicompost at home. Here is a list of them.

1. Two plastic bins (One short and the other one taller) and a Food Scrap Container

The short plastic bin should measure 15 inches deep, 25 inches wide, and 5 inches high. This size for the short bin would work happily. It doesn’t need any top and it comes with an extra height that allows you to take the top extra liquid that you can use somewhere else.

The tall bin should measure 15 inches wide, 20 inches deep, and 15 inches deep. You should make sure that the tall bin comes with a top to make sure that worms don’t find their way out. If possible, it should be flexible because of the holes you will drill in it.

The food scrap container will be the place where you will be collecting food for the worms and feeding it to them when the time is right.

2. A Drill

It should measure an eighth of an inch in diameter or be one inch in diameter. It will help you in drilling the holes talked about above. You can check the best Drill on Amazon today.

3. Screening Material

Screening materials should measure 4 inches by 4 inches and they should not be metal because metal rusts when exposed to moisture. The screening material helps prevent the worms from going out of the bin.

4. Waterproof Glue

This will help hold the screen in position even in wet conditions. you can check the best Waterproof Glue on amazon today

5. Shredded Paper

This can be any type of paper but it’s vital that you avoid any shiny, heavy, or colored paper. These should be enough to fill the bins by three inches and should be added once a week when feeding the worms. You can check the best Shredded paper on Amazon

6. A Bit of Water

This will help create the right environment for the worms to thrive in. It also allows you to soak the shredded paper before using it.

7. A Bit of Dirt

The dirt should be clean, as in it shouldn’t contain any harmful chemicals. Try and get it from the safest place you may know since you only need a pound of dirt.

8. Worms

Be careful with the worm you use because they determine the quality of vermicompost you use. You can use the regular earthworms or opt for red wrigglers in which the red wrigglers work best. You can find these worms by looking for worm sellers around your area.

9. A Trowel

You will find it very useful for moving the compost into the bin

Now you have everything ready. You can now be assured your first step on knowing how to do vermicompost at home is checked. On to the next.

How to do Vermicompost at Home

To have the complete guide then will require us to go in three different stages. The first stage will be the preparation to creating the perfect bin, the second stage will be making the right conditions for the worm the final stage will be to start vermicomposting.

Stage 1: Making the Perfect Bin

i) Select a spot

This should a spot near your home where water temperatures and moisture levels remain consistent. It could be the balcony, patio, or even in your home but should not be a place where there are hot and cold temperatures as this would disturb the worm. It should also have good drainage so that excess water does not accumulate.

ii) Get a Worm Bin

There are particular worm bins made for vermicomposting. These bins are made in such a way that it is easy to maintain and has holes for aeration. Some of these worm bins could cost you above $100, but the good news is that there are plans available free on the internet which you could use to make your own.

iii) Drill Holes in the Bin

This will make sure that the aeration in the bins is enough for the worms.  This will in turn ensure that the worms stay healthy and live for longer. If you want more space to store more food waste, you could always get a bigger bin. You can get new bins from hardware stores and they would cost you less than $20.

iv) Put the Bin on Blocks with Plastic Beneath It

This is a step that ensures the bin is not close to the ground in any way. The plastic should be placed under the bin and not on top of it.

v) Get Your Worms

You can get them from worm farms or even from the market. If you got them from the market, make sure that they are not already fully grown. You would end up buying worms that will die after some time and it can be quite a waste of money.

composting-bin

Stage 2: Create the Best Worm Conditions

i) Use the Shredded Papers and Soak Them

As highlighted above, your shredded papers should fill the bin 3 inches tall. This plays a great role in making sure that there is good moisture content for the worms to thrive in. After filling the bin to three inches with shredded paper, soak it up with water, just enough to wet all of it.

ii) Pour Some Dirt on Top of the Bedding

The bedding is the shredded paper. After setting it into the bin and making sure that it has enough moisture, then you can add some dirt on top. Spread it evenly around the bin.

iii)Put an Even Layer of Food Waste on Top

Once you have the bedding set up and you have added some dirt to the bin, you can now put in an even layer of food waste. This is what the worms eat so it should be placed in a nice even layer over top of your bedding.

iv) Close the Lid

Once everything is set and your bins are all set up, you have to close the lid and give it time. How much time exactly? Well, your patience will be put to test here because it takes 2 weeks. 2 whole weeks to start seeing some results. But trust me, it is totally worth it.

Stage 3: Start Vermicomposting

Now we are on the finishing touches of the process. The finals step on how to do vermicomposting at home involves the following steps:

i) Place the Worms into the Bin

Simple, you just have to move the worms from their separate bucket into your bin. You should drill a hole in the middle of the bidding and not across it then place the worms there.

ii) Keep Your Worms Warm!

This is important as it allows them to stay calm and active. The ideal temperature would be around 20 – 25 degrees Celsius.

This may be hard to maintain during winter so you can place them in your kitchen which is usually warm. If you’re doing this then make sure that the worms have enough oxygen with them and that the bin has proper ventilation.

iii) Now Start Adding Food to Your Worms!

You can now feed your worms any food scraps contained in your household which are normally thrown away. For every 1000 worms, add 225g of food every day. By doing this, you should be able to have a bucket full of rich compost in 4 months’ time!

The idea is very simple. Each bin is divided into two parts: the top part for food wastes and the bottom part with worms. The worms will eat all the contents in the vermicomposting bin while helping to produce fine compost you could ever think of.

You thought learning how to do vermicomposting at home was going to be difficult? Truth is, it’s not, and all that will be needed from you big time is your patience.

How to Make Vermicompost from Cow Dung

This is another intriguing way of making vermicompost. It’s worth getting to learn how to make vermicompost from cow dung since it doesn’t require much input too. To make this possible you are going to require the following:

  1. Cow dung
  2. A bin, preferably of the size you can easily move around
  3. Biomass
  4. Gunny bags

It would be better if you have that worm hotel just for your worms to stay in as they consume all the cow dung you keep adding to this hotel. And so, how do you go about getting these materials if you need them?

Easy peasy as you are going to get them by just buying them. A bag of cow dung would easily cost you no more than $50 and that too if you want a considerable amount of it. You can even get the bin for free or be given it as a gift.

How to Make Vermicompost from Cow Dung

  1. Start by adding dirt to the bottom of the bin.
  2. Place the Biomass under the sun for around 8-12days. Afterward, cut it up and into your preferred sizes. Add it to the bin.
  3. Add water to the cow dung until it turns to heavy liquid the add it to the bin. Sprinkle evenly.
  4. Add biowastes to the mixture until they reach a height of 0.5ft
  5. Add worms to the mixture and cover the compost with gunny bags
  6. Make sure that you sprinkle the compost with water from time to time.
  7. Protect the compost from outside forces such as lizards and rodents by creating a perimeter around the area.
  8. Always check to make sure that the compost has the right temperature
  9. You might be wondering why use the cow dung, which is already compost to make vermicompost right? Well, cow dung comes with a strong odor from the high ammonia percentage which is not healthy for the plants.
  10. Using the worm helps neutralize the disadvantage of the cow dung and makes it more nutritious. Thus, cow dung is made more nutritious than cow dung being all by itself.

Which is Better; Soil or Cow Dung?

When learning how to do vermicomposting at home, you might have probably wondered which is the better option, soil or cow dung? The answer should probably be visible by now.

Because cow dung remains to be the better option for learning how to do vermicompost from home. Soil is great but it does not have as much nutritious content as much as cow dung has.

Final Thoughts

Getting to know how to do vermicomposting at home is something that can help you turn your garden and make it full of life. Making vermicompost from scratch may take time but in the end, it’s definitely worth the effort.

Even better is that once you start harvesting, you just keep going and the maintenance needed is not as much. You need to check the temperatures and water levels and that the food for the worms is ever-present.

What else is stopping you from knowing how to do vermicomposting at home? If you got what the whole process needs, then start making your vermicompost today!

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *