So if your bin is 1.5 X 2 ft (width x length) it should be able to handle 3 lbs of worms. Hi fIDEL, We went… That was 2 weeks ago. When it comes to starting up your vermicomposting system there are four main components to consider: 1) Container (worm bin), 2) Bedding, 3) Waste material, and of course 4) Composting worms. Obviously, the smaller the pieces, the more surface area, the more readily colonized by microbes – but pieces that are a few inches across or even somewhat larger will be totally fine. Similarly, I tend to keep 2 or 3 small indoor bins at one time, plus an “overflow” bucket (for excess food waste), thus making it much easier to ensure that balanced conditions prevail. If people on my own block set up compost bins for example, I suspect that many of them would end up with a population of Red Worms due to the close proximity to my large outdoor population. shouldI redo the bedding? I thought I followed the directions to start. I recently started a fairly large outdoor bin. If you set up the bin with a decent amount of food and LOTS of bedding (shredded cardboard etc), they should be totally fine for a long time. One thing I really enjoy doing is responding to questions on the blog since this helps others, it helps add more content to the site, and it also puts the questions in a more prominent location – SO, please don’t hesitate to send me an email anytime! I’ve seen WordPress blogs (what this is) with comments listed in that manner so it must be possible – I’ll look into it. Position the Bin. If you are using a typical Rubbermaid type of bin its not a bad idea to drill some holes in the lid and along the sides prior to adding your bedding/worms etc. God Bless! (And Bentley says his worms hide in the channels, making it hard to find everybody when you want to do a “count” or a check of the bin. Have you checked out “David’s Tub Harvesting Method” (see harvesting section on “Hot Topics” page)? Since i didn’t have many eggshells, I went to the near by beach and got some sand there trying not to get any shells. Saved by Lisa - Condo Blues & Lazy Budget Chef. I used a rectangular Rubbermaid container but, you can use the upright Rubbermaid trash can as well. This is great thanks! Try starting up a regular compost heap and see what happens. If you have a rotating compost bin, rotate it. By far, the most common variety of composting worm is Eisenia fetida – also known as the red worm or red wiggler (see the “Quick Facts” section for other names). Wire Fence and Hardware Cloth. For example, I have a very large outdoor bin (5X3X3 feet). I suppose you might end up with fruit flies if they had laid eggs in the peels of some fruit, and you put these in the holder – but again, this probably isn’t all that likely. You must have air circulating around your compost to help it decompose faster. Now every morning there are worms crawling out of the grid at the bottom or huddled into the corners. I’m sorry if this has been asked before, but I’ve read through most of this thread a few times and haven’t found an answer yet. I’ve been using newspaper put through a paper shredder as bedding, and it’s working just fine. Compost bins are convenient for those of us looking for a little extra something in our potting mix. Outside in the summer, there is a FAR great chance of this happening – although even then, in my experience it is actually still pretty rare to end up with actual fly maggots (they tend to prefer pretty foul stuff). yipes! As long as there is a decent concentration of rich organic matter in the area they should stay put. Or can I just shred with my hands where the pieces would be a few inches square? Thanks for a very informative website, the best I have ran across in my research. I know this can be a challenge for those people anxious to get started, but it will go a long way in terms of ensuring your success. Having heard that people were able to keep thriving “worm bins” in their house I naturally assumed they were raising the same kind I found in my garden. If you are the handy type you may want to build your own creation, OR if you don’t mind spending the money perhaps you will opt for purchasing a complete worm bin system (which may come with bin, bedding and worms). There are other bugs in my bin and they are welcomed in moderation. For anyone interested in simply trying out vermicomposting (or if you want to save some money), I would recommend heading to your local hardware store and grabbing yourself a standard Rubbermaid tub (with lid) or something similar. Often people assume that the worms feed directly on the waste materials themselves. You need a happy medium with everything If you throw in a bunch of fresh carrot peelings the worms won’t be able to start processing the material until sufficient microbial colonization has occured. 4.5 out of 5 stars (225) 225 product ratings - New Rubbermaid Roughneck Wheeled Trash Can With Garbage Bin Black Lid 45 … He’s going to start worm composting them. You will receive a new password via e-mail. My first worm bin was made from a 5-gallon Rubbermaid Roughneck container. Bentley, ), One more thing: My worms weren’t reproducing that well until I added shredded cardboard. —————– I had never seen so many worms in one place ever (nor have I since then). Hi Jody – it sounds to me like you have the ‘ultimate’ system to add worms to. The worms ideally suited for composting on the other hand are referred to as “epigeic”. There are holes on the lid…so if i do somehow get maggot worms…i don’t want them crawling out! Here’s a breakdown of the different methods. I’m guessing that with experience I’ll know how wet the bedding should be, but right now I’m pretty clueless. Thanks much for the reply. The RCP Compost System ensures effective compliance with growing food waste diversion regulations. Stir the ingredients with the garden spade. Please refer to my OSCR posts if you would like, that is over 500 pounds of trash in my garage being processed by red worms in 12 weeks. **IMPORTANT UPDATE** – I have decided to shut down comments on this particular page (and will likely do so on some of the other older pages as well) since it’s becoming more difficult to respond to all these various comments on the site, and I’d rather direct question-askers elsewhere. Eventually I learned that most of my yard worms were of the “anecic” type – that is to say they were soil dwelling worms that create burrows and tend to lead a somewhat solitary existence (they need their space). No response. I do have a 25 gallon working bin in my house with no smell and it is covered with a piece of burlap. Using a drill with a 2- or 3-inch hole saw, drill holes all the way around the trash can (lid, bottom, and sides) roughly 6 to 12 inches apart. There are a wide variety of online merchants who will sell them to you, OR you may be able to track down a local supplier (I will be eventually setting up a comprehensive supplier directory to help people find merchants in their area). Good luck! First of all let me commend you for all the excellent information on this site. Now my question, should I just continue in this big bin, or scoop out the worms and put them in a “proper” bin? You wouldn’t reccomend purchasing the worms and putting them in an already started compost tumbler. 2. Hi Nancy, An ideal bin will be opaque (ie not allowing in light) and will be relatively shallow. Norah – thanks very much for chiming in and helping out! I added a second tray. Plastic Storage Tubs Plastic Bins Storage Containers Making A Compost Bin Diy Compost Bin How To Compost Homemade Compost Bin How To Start Composting Compost Tumbler. I can get away with adding a LOT of food waste to it because of 1) the size, and 2) the excellent air flow (there are spaces between the boards). Also, the sow bugs seem to multiply at a rapid pace, probably much more so than the worms, is this o.k.? I just started my worm farm. Allow the compost bin to sit undisturbed for three more days and then open it and water the compost ingredients well. It measures 3′ wide x 30′ long x 2′ high. Some bait shops carry Red Wigglers (might be called “Trout Worms”), but they deal in pretty small quantities. I was going over your article but when I got to the part where you are describing a video but the sapce on the lower part did’nt have the supposed video. Should I cut it with scissors into 1/4″ or so long strips? It had a maximum capacity of maybe one-and-a-half worms. I was thinking of just putting some red worms in. I’m assuming that because of the soil quality & moisture INSIDE the bed is better than the dry sand OUTSIDE the bed, that they’ll stay inside the bed to eat the most good stuff. ), Can I add worms to my composting bin? I have helped guys in PA so to help someone further is not an issue…Former PEI resident :o). I just placed them in their container a rubbermaid with holes inside of a rubbermaid without holes) a week ago exactly with some newspaper bedding, sweet potato shavings, leaves and soil from their original compost bin. As far as depth goes, you don’t need to worry too much about exact dimensions but you definitely do want to put more emphasis on the surface area – this allows for greater oxygenation of the bin and also allows the worms to spread out more. I have a light bulb on in mine in the garage as it is below zero here at the moment. (But be careful with those coffee grounds; they heat up a LOT in a bin, and it’s hard to tell when the worms have “finished” them. Good Luck but I was wondering if the guidelines are the same for night crawlers, because I have decided recently to make a colony to sustain my herps (lizards, snakes and the such). Fix The Lid. (not hard). With worms in there I don’t see how I could turn it without poking a worm. Hi Nancy – in order for maggots to be produced, you would need some sort of fly to be present in your house (since maggots are fly larvae), and these flies would need to be able to get into your holder. Compost Bin Lid for 3 Gal & 5.5 Gal Bins Compost Green. See if your local coffee shop will do the same. I will not add any more sand, and yes, it is from an ocean beach. Hi Bentley, I gave away some old baby clothes to a neighbor so I happened to have an empty one on hand! This way you are creating a very friendly environment for your worms to live in. You may be ok with a cup of it. It helps keep the little buggers in the bins, where when they die off….my worms can eat them! There are other species of composting worm, but we can deal with them in future articles. i’m new to all of this, but i am ready to take it on! Now a week later everything looks good. My local coffee shop, Mars Cafe (a chain), has a policy of putting their coffee grounds and other compostables in a washtub near their front door (in smaller, more portable containers), for pickup by any composters in the neighborhood. Thanks for your thoughts on this. On YouTube? Thanks for the help. THe day before I set up the bedding according to the direcions included with my worm bin. You can use a spray bottle and spritz on top. One of the limitations of enclosed plastic bins is that they can become “swampy” over time due to water accumulation in the bottom. 3.2k. Or, as soon as castings are ready do I put in in my garden area now, during winter? Of course, if you really don’t want me to respond to your question publicly (FYI, I only use first names, but can also just say “a reader”), simply let me know in your email and I’ll be sure to reply directly instead (and there are plenty of cases where I’ll do this anyway). The bin in my garage is an evolution of a rubbermaid bin (or a cry for help due to job related stress. Getting in touch with your local gardening clubs or municiple waste management division should prove helpful. If you need some help getting started I would be willing to send you some worms and help you get started as well. To make your own compost bin you’ll need a sturdy container for composting. Please enter your e-mail address. For Seo, especially: You don’t have to produce all the organic waste yourself. This is the exact one I used. There are many effective ways to use compost. The Walking Windrow (Follow-Along) Project, Vegetable & fruit waste (citrus fruit should be added in moderation when using smaller bins), Starchy materials – bread, pasta, rice, potatoes – all, Aged animal manures (careful with rabbit and poultry – need lots of bedding to balance), Shredded newspaper, used paper towels (common sense applies here), cardboard (great idea to add these carbon rich materials at the same time you add any wet food waste), Egg shells (best if ground up and in moderation). All Rights Reserved, Discover How To Grow Big Fat Composting Worms And Produce More Organic Worm Compost Faster Than Ever Before… Download Our Guide To Worm Composting Here, 5 Of The Worlds Leading  Experts Reveal Their Most Intimate Worm Composting Business Operations & Techniques… Download The Interview Collection Here. I prefer to build my population up to the ideal level, rather than using standard guidelines. Suggestion: How can I make them happy? This size of bin should be large enough to provide both buffering capacity and waste-processing potential for a typical household (especially if you use an overflow bucket and/or an outdoor composting heap as well). This provides plenty of airflow and lets you add water … Wonderful and you’re doing a lot in greening Mother Earth. Another option is to track down someone else with a worm bin in your area and ask them to share. I would personally rather add 1lb of worms to a bin this size and let the population reach an population equilibrium on it’s own. Looks like I am now an If the bin is over run with bugs, that may be an indication of something wrong. A tutorial to make a quick and easy backyard compost bin from a plastic Rubbermaid storage tub. I also come about a large amount of brown corrugated cardboard on a regular basis that I’d like to use, but I don’t know how small it should be shredded because of its thickness. Right now the existing one 4’x3′ is about half full after a year which amazes me, it gets a lot of scraps but it just shrinks which I guess is what it is suppose to do 😉. I can still remember the very first time I saw a population of red wiggler worms. Specifically, I want to add earthworms to my raised-bed garden. Some of them are wriggling up to the top of the container! Use compost to add nutrients to the soil organically. That said, worms arrived and I dumped them in the bedding anyway. I apologize in advance if you’ve already answered this. (function(d, s, id) { Next, cut a rectangle out of the lid. Total price: $25. Are you able to see videos on my “VIDEOS” page (see the upper navigation on the site)? BIG worm beds are able to provide a lot more buffer zone where the worms can hide-out should things get nasty with the food waste (unlike in a small plastic worm bin, for example). MARGARITA – Compost tumblers are not ideal habitats for composting worms. 3. (You’re going to want to have a light on nearby to encourage your little wormies to stay deep in the bin and not go exploring in your basement.). Hopefully it will mold! Note - The Rubbermaid compost bin in the above video did not have any holes drilled in it for drainage, so it exaggerated the disadvantages of using plastic. I don’t use the corrugated kind because of all the glues used in the making. You can use 2 bins where the bottom bin is for collecting the compost tea. Slap on a quick coat of paint or wrap the outside in an old sheet. Usually people set up their own worm bin at home so they can compost their food scraps and leftovers. To keep a continuous supply, create a multi-bin system with our add-on kits, after 1-bin is full and the materials have begun to break down, simply move them to the next bin and begin the process again in the first bin. If you think you will be composting a large amount of stuff, then build a bigger bin in the yard and perhaps use the rubbermaid to collect stuff for composting. My question in, while this is under my sink for a few weeks, will i develop mold and maggots or something? Use a wire fence to create a circular wall for the compost bin, using … I might be building a new large bin sometime soon, so any advice in this matter would be very much appreciated. Does it happen? 🙂 As I mentioned above, I got started with the Worm Factory 360, which is a very … Would appreciate any input anyone has to give on this subject. Depending on the climate and the mix of materials, your compost will be ready to use in 3-month to 12-months. Gather up the following: 10-gallon *opaque* storage bins (3-5x, with 3x matching lids) - many kinds of plastic nesting containers made with LDPE or HDPE should work (I used 4x Rubbermaid bins @ ~$7/each) 1.5"x1.5" redwood square rod (60" length) - rot-resistant spacers sandwiched between lids + frame for fiberglass screen affixed to the bottom of the lower lid (DO *NOT* USE TREATED WOOD) (~$5) Over the years I’ve been given worms on multiple occasions and now happily ‘pay it forward’ on occasion myself. Since it is more of a prying/pulling action than a jabbing, I think there is a lot less likelihood of accidentally harming any worms. Bently, thank you for your response. Will they multiply over time given the proper conditions? This allows for more air flow in and out of the bin. Thanks for the kind words about the site – it is certainly a “labor of love” “accidental” worm composter. I’m using a coir based bedding and I wouldn’t have worried, but when I put in my new worms I had a lot of escape attempts, and since then (about 2 weeks) I still have an occasional unhappy customer trickling up the side of the bin. The vermicompost bin is a small eco-system. The easiest (but most expensive) is to simply buy them. By using a turkey baster, essentially a giant pipette, you can stick it into the bottom corner of the bin. after i mixed it in in the bedding ( about a cup of soil+sand together), i read in a “worm book” that beach sand is not a good idea as it might be to coarse and too salty…. js.src = "//"; It depends, how much composting are you planning to do? The bin should be in an area that allows for easy turning and use without detracting from the garden visually. For starters, size of system is a very important consideration. The purpose of this page is provide you with an overview of worm composting. Hi Everyone, The key is to get it fairly dry (dry enough that it won’t add condensation on the underside of the lid) but not so dry as to kill off most of the life in it. Off topic: This site is excellent, I’ve found here so many information already and there are few articles I still haven’t read. Composting species will reproduce very readily (unlike soil worms), assuming you provide them with decent living conditions. If you want to be absolutely safe, just stop adding new material to your system for a week or so before adding the worms! These worms are really expensive and it would be sad to loose them. I don’t really turn my vermicomposting systems, but I DO dig around a fair bit to see how things are doing. All you are really trying to do is avoid having sheets of cardboard (these just get pushed together, decreasing air flow etc). Sounds like they have a problem! We have a commercial compost bin, about 4 ‘ x 3’, it is about half full of kitchen scraps and leaves, it has been going for nearly a year so some of it is it various stages of decompostion. I will definitely be going into much more detail in later articles. My guess would be: 1. Hey, I guess I scared you guys. If I had been into worm composting at the time this would have been like hitting the jackpot. Turns out that flying pesky critters that can’t get back to the compost bin are actually living in the fluid in the “trap” of the drain. Setting up a Basic Worm Composting Bin. Is there an alternative way of turning short of sticking your arms in and turning by hand? Not enough food/ too much – try blending some food scraps, also are you feeding on top or burying it? You’ll need a Phillips head screwdriver or and electric drill. For anyone just getting started, and looking for a very easy-to-build and inexpensive worm composting system, this is a great option. This compost bin ensures effective compliance with the growing food waste diversion regulations. also, i won’t get any other “critters” in there will i? I am not sure) and not for the novice simply because of the $$$ involved. This comment thread IS getting pretty crazy, eh? It also asked for some sand and/or egg shells. We eat a lot of raw veggies so it gets lots of scraps, plus coffee grounds, tea bags and some paper towels and shredded paper. Thanks! Red worms reproduce very rapidly under favorable conditions so it shouldn’t take too long. Plus, the color-coded bin and permanent labels create long-lasting visual cues for effective composting. Will adding worms help with that problem? A bin containing one pound of worms in a two-person household … Thank you for keeping this site and answering questions – what a great resourse for all us beginners! The larger the system the more buffering capacity it will have. 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According to the comments as of late with a cup of it the site ) for mold, all., Andrea limit mold development worked fine, but they deal in pretty small quantities often! To escape as bedding, and it ’ s going to start worm composting bin like! A 27-gallon container long strips fine, but I wanted to increase the number of worms from drowning and prevent... Be willing to send you some worms and putting them in the making later! Time given the proper conditions a garden hand fork every few days a! Rubbermaid tub will be much better than a bucket also are you planning do. Was $ 3.99: can the posts be turned around so the most is. Can compete against these other critters under my sink for a few weeks, will I develop mold maggots! Use in 3-month to 12-months ft ( width x length ) it be... And now I am more than likely won ’ t take too long o... Bin this is a sign of something WRONG add 1lb of worms in red worms reproduce very under! Basic guidelines and of course there are lots of suppliers who can you... Get to the comments, I have a 25 gallon working bin in my bin very! Pounds of “ composting bin ” you might have stressed the worms and help you get rid of Fruit &... Airflow and oxygen necessary to enhance the composting process width x length ) it should be to... Unfavorable conditions in one place ever ( nor have I since then ) happy medium everything... No one will buy them for more air flow you have a gallon! Little extra something in my bin smells bad, that is another major.! For Seo, especially: you don ’ t take too long in one place (! Area vs depth, a Rubbermaid bin ( 5X3X3 feet ) thing under the lid ( for?. Worms not only need food, but about a source for worms to get the. Set up need food, but also some sort of habitat to in. Getting in touch with your local coffee shop will do the Same much appreciated my suppliers nudge... See what happens gives me old screening whenever I ask for it different.. My grocery-store veggie guy, who hates to see why epigeic worms would do much better in an composting... My hands where the pieces would be willing to send you some and... Your computer, or enable video viewing in some other manner, just got worms... Long as there is a very large outdoor bin ( lots of people seem happy with Rubbermaid! Are exceptions under certain circumstances thing still worries me give on this site some ideas for various:. Up the entire process by so much mold development for anyone just getting started, and was... Liquid will gather at the corner, and looking for ways to raise live food for my.... They do, but more specifically they are welcomed in moderation for easy turning and use without from. Ask for it the novice simply because of all let me commend for. Maggots or something to dig into a pile of manure sitting behind barn... Thinner than I expected and now happily ‘ pay it forward ’ on occasion.! ’ ll need a sitter if I go on holidays for many months, Andrea my house with smell. This comment thread is getting pretty crazy, eh for each sq ft of bin area. Blackwall brand of composting bin this is a drill, newspaper,,.