How to start a worm farm

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How to start a worm farm

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Project Overview

Starting a worm farm is easy and environmentally friendly. This simple guide tells you how to put your worm farm together and where to put it. You’ll see what to feed the worms and how often. There also are tips on how to look after your worms in winter and summer and how to best use the worm tea and castings in your garden. 

Continue to step-by-step instructions

Step by Step Instructions

1 Put the worm farm together
2 Add the first container
3 Put the worms in the worm farm
4 Feed the worms
5 Put on the worm blanket
6 Change the first container
7 Using the castings and the worm tea
  • Step 1. Put the worm farm together

    Before you start putting the worm farm together, put the coir peat brick that comes with the kit in a bucket of water. It will take about two hours to turn into a fibrous peat-like material. To build the worm farm, attach the four legs to the bottom of the worm farm, this is also known as the worm tea trap. This is where the organic liquid fertiliser produced by the worms is collected. Attach the tap to the worm farm by screwing it into the bottom of the worm tea trap.

  • Step 2. Add the first container

    Simply add the first container to the worm farm by putting it on top of the worm tea trap and firmly pushing it down. The first container is where the organic matter will go. Put on the dust mask and gloves and pour a 2cm layer of compost into the first container. Use compost without any fertiliser in it, because it does affect the worms.
  • Step 3. Put the worms in the worm farm

    Carefully tip the worms into the first container.  Gently break the worms and the organic material up so that the worms are evenly spread across the first container. The worms in the pack are tiger worms which thrive in rotting vegetation, compost and manure and are very good at breaking down organic material. 
  • Step 4. Feed the worms

    Worms can eat up to half their weight in food every day. When feeding them, the smaller the food scraps the better because they break down faster. Worms can eat fruit, vegetables, paper, eggshells, bread, tea bags, coffee grounds, grains and pasta. Do not feed them salty foods, citrus fruits, onions, spicy foods, oils, pre-packaged foods with preservatives and dairy products. They can eat meat but it attracts rats, vermin and flies. Spread the food evenly over the worms. Don’t feed your worms every day, preferably every few days, when they’ve finished what you last fed them.

  • Step 5. Put on the worm blanket

    When deciding where to put your worm farm, choose a spot where the temperature remains fairly constant. Under a tree or under eaves is ideal because they won’t get too much sun or too much rain. To keep the temperature constant in winter, put a worm blanket on top of the worms and their food. In summer, to help keep the worms cool, lightly spray them with water. After putting on the worm blanket put the lid on your worm farm.

  • Step 6. Change the first container

    When the worms have eaten all of their food, they will look to travel down the worm farm. This is when you should change the container using the spare containers that came in the kit. Remove the top container and replace it with an empty one. Put the old container on top of the empty container. The worms at the top of the worm farm will move into the middle container, leaving behind their castings in the top container. Every time you change your container, repeat the process of adding compost and food to the new container.

  • Step 7. Using the castings and the worm tea

    After the worms have moved from the top container to the middle one, they will have left behind their castings – the richest, natural fertiliser known. A tablespoon of pure worm castings provides enough organic nutrients to feed a 180cm potted plant for more than two months. You can add the castings to compost or put them straight into your garden. The worm tea from the bottom of your worm farm is a very concentrated, organic liquid fertiliser. Before using it on your plants, dilute it in your watering can with a ratio of it one part worm tea to 10 parts water. 

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