Blog Category:

Vermicomposting for Beginners

Worm Composting – The Basics What is vermicomposting? “Vermi-” means “relating to worms.” Therefore, vermicomposting means creating compost by using worms. It’s the art of feeding worms your food scraps. The worms turn your food waste into nutrient-rich organic fertilizer, also known as humus, worm castings, worm manure, or worm feces – perfect for gardens, lawns, and potted plants. It may seem like a daunting task, but it’s actually quite simple. All you need are worm bins, some organic waste, bedding materials, worms, and the right attitude to take care of these little creatures. This article addresses several basic materials you will need and where to get the worms, the pros and cons of vermicomposting as well as common mistakes beginners make and how to avoid them! Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm has all the knowledge you will need to succeed at vermicomposting. Composting Bins Your worms are going to need a place to call home that’s why the first thing you will need to start vermicomposting is a worm bin. Not all worm bins are created equal. Some materials, like plastic and wood, are better suited to house a worm population.  It’s important to note that they cannot have any antimicrobial properties; since bacteria and other beneficial microbes are needed for the composting process to happen. You can purchase commercial bins or build your own bin.  Whichever you decide to go for, these are the attributes a good worm bin should have:

Read More

Holiday Gift Ideas from Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm

Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm would like to wish everyone Happy Holidays! Are you stuck on which gifts to buy your friends and loved ones? Well, we are here to help! Uncle Jim’s offers awesome products ranging from apparel to supplies. Apparel Our apparel is perfect for when you want to work in the garden or with your worms. Do you or your loved ones need a new hat? We have a new Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm Ball Cap that will keep the sun out of your eyes while you’re doing any outdoor work. We also have a tasteful half-apron that will help keep your clothes clean, and it comes with a garden shovel. T-shirts are perfect for gardening and everyday wear. We offer Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm t-shirts in many different colors and sizes– including children’s. The shirt is 100% pre-shrunk cotton, so you do not have to worry about it shrinking in the wash. It is a breathable and lightweight fabric, which makes it perfect for doing any outdoor or vermicomposting work! Composters Are you or your family trying to get into composting? Vermicomposting is ideal because you can turn kitchen scraps into all-natural fertilizer. This organic fertilizer will nourish your garden or houseplants. Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm is number one when it comes to composting worms and supplies, so trust us with all your composting needs. Vermicomposting can be done indoors or outdoors, but if you live in a colder region, you should start with an indoor composting bin. …

Read More

Vermicomposting Red Worm Life Cycle

All living organisms go through the same life cycle: birth, development, reproduction, and death. What is the life cycle of the King of Composting, the Red Worm? These worms are hermaphrodites. That means they each have both male and female reproductive organs. Let’s find out how they make new, baby worms! Red Worm Reproduction Red worms’ reproductive organs are in the clitellum, a gland that sticks out from the rest of their body. It looks like the worm is wearing a ring around its body. When the worm becomes fertile, the clitellum becomes more visible and turns orange. The color change is a signal that the worm is ready for reproduction. Worms, even though they are hermaphrodites, do not reproduce alone. At least one additional Red Worm is necessary so they can exchange genetic material.

Read More

Winter is Coming! Get Your Outdoor Vermicomposting Bin Ready for Chilly Temperatures

The leaves are changing colors, which means it’s the time of year to get your vermicomposting bin ready for the colder season. Even though it’s cold outside, you can still compost your kitchen scraps using worms. The worms will produce free, all-natural fertilizer. If you are from a warmer climate that doesn’t dip below 57°F, your composting worms will probably not die, but they will slow down due to lower temperatures. However, if you live in a colder area, then you may want to take precautions so your worms will not die.

Read More

Which Peat Moss is Safe for Vermicomposting Bedding?

Peat moss makes excellent bedding for a vermicomposting bin, but how can you tell if a bag of peat moss is safe for your composting worms? Many people new to vermicomposting ask whether they should add peat moss that contains additional ingredients. The bag might say it “feeds” with a chemical fertilizer, such as Miracle-Gro. What does “sphagnum” mean? What about bagged potting mixes? Let’s examine some basics of vermiculture before we respond to these questions. What is Vermicomposting? Vermicomposting is the natural and organic method of disposing of kitchen scraps and garden waste. Order Red Worms or European Night Crawlers from Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm, and keep them in a special worm bin. Feed them every few days. The foods you feed your worms should be, generally speaking, non-citrus fruits and non-acidic vegetables. Do NOT feed them dairy, meats, and anything made with preservatives and chemicals. All fruits and veggies must be cleansed of any oils, dressings, seasonings, and spices. They should be cut up in small pieces. You feed your worms well and, in turn, they will produce prize fertilizer for your gardens, lawns, and shrubs. Please refer to our articles on feeding worms: Top Five Best Foods for Composting Worms and Foods That Can Hurt Composting Worms.

Read More

Vermicomposting, Hot Composting or Cold Composting?

Composting is composting, right? Wrong! Let’s talk about three different types of composting: hot, cold, and vermicomposting. All these styles of composting break down organic matter. They all result in finished compost to use in your garden soil. However, they each require a different amount of labor from you. And they each take a different amount of time to start producing finished compost.

Read More

Five Ways Kids Learn from Composting with Worms

Children and composting worms are a perfect match. Vermicomposting is both fun and educational. Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm is proud to announce its new Children’s Vermicomposting Kit. Made for small hands, this starter kit comes with 100 composting worms and a 2-gallon bin, plus accessories and a book. Already have a vermicomposting bin? Let them help, or get them their own Children’s Vermicomposting Kid. Having their own worms, bin, gardening tools, starter bedding, and instructions helps them take ownership of the project. Here are five ways kids absorb lessons when they compost with worms. Hands-On Learning You do not have to give a lengthy vermicomposting lecture. Kids learn a lot from doing. When setting up a bin, read through the instructions with them. Depending on their maturity, they might be able to set up the worm bin with a little guidance from you. Younger children will need more help.

Read More

Container Gardening Using Vermicompost

When you think of container gardening, you probably think of flowers. Surprise! You can also grow herbs, vegetables, shrubs, and even trees in containers! Basics of Container Gardening Find out the needs of your plant and make sure to give it what it needs. Choose a location that has the right amount of sun for that specific plant. Select a container with drainage holes. Make sure your container provides enough space for the plants’ roots. Some plants, such as parsley and leaf lettuce, can be planted in shallow bowls just six inches deep. At the other end of the spectrum, small trees need a 15-gallon container, which is about 16 inches wide and 16 inches deep. Water as often as needed. Smaller containers will need to be watered more often than larger containers. If you get cold winters, the roots of perennials, trees, and shrubs in containers could freeze and be damaged. You may need to move these containers to a sheltered spot during the coldest season. Use a light soil mix in your containers.

Read More

How to Grow a Butterfly Garden Using Compost

Are you excited about the idea of growing a garden that butterflies love? Looking forward to beautiful fluttering wings? If you want to attract butterflies, it’s not enough to offer the adult butterflies a bit of nectar. You must also create a garden that is hospitable for their offspring–caterpillars. Your plants will need nourishment. Organic finished compost is safe for both plants and insects. Start in advance by composting kitchen scraps. The fastest way to compost at home is to use composting worms. Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm has composting bins and composting worms to make plenty of finished compost. Nectar Isn’t Enough for Butterflies The mistake that many gardeners make is that they plant flowers that offer nectar for adult butterflies, then do nothing more. Like other creatures, butterflies are driven to eat and survive–and to reproduce as well. So in addition to finding a meal today, butterflies need to find plants that their future baby caterpillars can. When butterflies find those plants, they lay their eggs there.

Read More