Adding Compost to Your Garden

What are the best ways to add compost from vermicomposting to your garden? Vermicomposting is composting with worms. “Vermis” is Latin for worm. Composting can be done without worms, but worms accelerate and enrich the process. They generate rich, dark brown humus. This “black gold” is a super-food for plants that enhances soil porosity and nutrient content. Humus helps produce strong, healthy vegetation in abundance. At Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm, we recommend our Red Wiggler worms for vermicomposting. Humus works in a number of ways. It forms loose particle aggregates which make soil “crumbly”, which means the soil retains moisture while enhancing oxygen flow. Since plants depend on both water and free oxygen to develop, they do not do well in soil that is too compacted or too dry. Adding humus to clay, sandy soil or other types of difficult growing terrain increases porosity, which makes it much easier to grow successfully.

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Harvesting Worm Castings

When you have a vermicomposting system, you periodically need to harvest your worm castings. This nutrient-rich “black gold” is the perfect fertilizer for your plants. Harvesting also helps keep the worms healthy. You will know it is time to harvest when most of your worm bedding has been turned into a rich, dark, soil-like substance of vermicompost and castings. There are several good methods for harvesting worm castings for small home-based vermicomposting bins. Which method you choose will depend on the type of system you have set up, and on your personal taste.   There are single tray vermicomposting systems, stackable multi-tray systems and many do-it-yourself systems. Choose a method that efficiently extracts the casting while leaving enough worms behind to keep composting.

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How Worms Help Your Soil

Did you know that worms help increase the value of your soil?  Yup, it’s true.  Not all soils are created equal.  Most of the soil that you buy at your common stores or farms is lower quality.  With worms, they will increase the value and nutrient in your soil exponentially. Below are some interesting facts about worms! Facts: Worms double the calcium content in soil. Worms increase magnesium level by two and a half times. After worms the soils nitrates goes up by five times. Worms increase the phosphorous level by seven times Increase potassium level eleven plus times.

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What Worm Kit Is Best For Me

I get asked all the time “What worm kit is best for me”?  Today I’m going to help you hopefully answer that questions for yourself?  We sell three different kinds of worm kits.  Enjoy!   Worm Hobby Kit This kit if for the average person that’s looking to grow worms for fun.  These are great to have as gifts for children to have families grow worms together.  You can see everything and grow them together. Whats Included: 500 Red Wrigglers Starter bedding 3 month feed supply (Our special blend is sure to have your worms thriving!) Moisture-retaining burlap Detailed Instructions 16″ L x 11″ W x 6″ H  Plastic container  

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Tips for Keeping Vegetables Fresh

Yes, we’re worm guys but after working hard and caring for your vegetable garden all spring and summer, you’ve got to figure out a way to keep your veggies fresh until you can consume or store all of them! All vegetables have different preferences when it comes to storage and maintaining freshness. Some prefer to be refrigerated and others prefer to not. Here are some tips for all those different veggies. Tomatoes are one of the trickier vegetables to store. Most people think that putting them in the fridge is the sure fire way to keeping them fresher longer – it works for most things after all….right? Actually that is wrong! Refrigerating your tomatoes will actually change their texture and lessen their flavor within only a few days. The best way to store them for a longer period of time is to place them in a bowl that is lined with paper towels. Another note for storing tomatoes is to keep their stems pointed upward; this is the juiciest part of the tomato and is the most likely to bruise first. Rotate the tomatoes around every day or two to help with bruising as well. Tomatoes should keep for at least a week when stored this way. Leafy greens such as spinach, cabbage and lettuce are best stored wrapped in a paper towel; this will help absorb any extra moisture from the leaves. They are best stored in a refrigerator, in the drawer if you have that ability. If they …

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Growing Vegetables in Different Climates

As it comes time to start readying our gardens for spring, it is also a perfect time to decide what vegetables will grow the best in your particular environment and climate. Different types of vegetables will grow easier and faster depending on your environment. There are four different categories that home-grown vegetables fall into: very hardy, hardy, tender and very tender. “Hardiness” is a term that indicates how well a vegetable tolerates cold. Generally speaking, the growing season wherever you live is determined by the average last frost (spring) and average first frost (fall). The hardiness of a plant tells you how far in advance of the “last frost” they can tolerate. Very Hardy plants can be planted anywhere between 4-6 weeks prior to the last frost of the spring. Vegetables such as cabbage, peas and lettuce need to be planted in advance so they have time to mature before the weather gets too warm. A few other plants that can be planted prior to the last frost are asparagus, onions, broccoli, turnips and spinach. Hardy plants are able to tolerate slight cold, and can survive maybe on frost of the season. This means they can generally be planted about 3 weeks prior to the last frost. A few examples of this type of plant are carrots, beets, radishes,

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Zucchini and Eggplant Casserole

Here is a recipe that you can use with almost all home grown vegetables! It is a healthy alternative to many other casseroles, and can be enjoyed by all! 3 medium zucchini, thinly sliced 2 large sweet red peppers, coarsely chopped 2 medium onions, coarsely chopped 1 medium eggplant, coarsely chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 3 tbsp olive oil 4 eggs ½ c. light mayonnaise 4 oz Romano cheese, shredded 8 oz Mozzarella cheese, shredded 12 round crackers, crushed

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The How and Why of Worm Farming

The phrase “worm farming” may come across as a larger undertaking than it actually is. The benefits of worm farming outweigh the perceived inconveniences or difficulties enormously. Worms are may be slimy and wiggly, but they are hugely beneficial to our environment. They naturally till, aerate and and fertilize the earth. Worms are slowly being eliminated from the earth through chemicals that are used by the majority of farmers to get their plants to grow larger. The trick that many farmers don’t realize, is that they are killing the creatures that could naturally help their plants to grow larger – without all the sprays and chemicals. Composting is a very simple way to create a healthful and safe environment for these crucial creatures. A simple and small way to being worm farming is to create a “worm jar”. Get a few foam boxes from your local organic grocer, poke a few holes in the bottom to allow for liquid to drain, and place the first box on top of another foam box. Once you have your box prepared, you can add the “bedding”. Bedding can be made of leaves, cardboard and even newspaper. The layer of bedding should only be about the thickness of your hand length. Make sure to soak the bedding in water before putting in the foam box.

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Tips and Tricks for Growing Sweet Corn In Your Garden

It’s the new year, which means in a couple months it’ll be time to plant your garden. If you were to ask any established backyard gardener about the best reason to grow a garden, you are most definitely going to get the same answer four out of five times:  Sweet corn.  Corn can take up a lot of space in a garden, but it is without a doubt, one of the best things you can grow.  When it is freshly picked, it is amazing. If you want to grow good sweet corn, you are going to want to have some rapid growth, enough rain and nutrients, as well as timing the harvesting at the right time!  No one wants a white ear of corn.that is stiff when it should be a little darker and full of flavor.  That is not to say that sweet corn cannot be white. Sweet corn is basically white, yellow, or a mixture of both.  The reason that you want to cook the corn as soon as possible after harvest, is that the sweet sucrose in the corn will turn all sorts of starchy, and takes away the sweet factor of it.  This is also true sometimes if you refrigerate or freeze the corn before you cook it.

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Healthy Recipe: Red Pepper and Leek Potato Salad

It’s the time of the season to start getting healthy. The holidays are now over, we’ve all eaten more than we should have. Time to stay healthy! This is a fantastic healthy recipe for you guys and gals out there that are trying to figure out something to do with all the potatoes we just grew from one of our blog post on growing the best potatoes in the World! Ingredients:   1 Serving red wine vinegar 1 tsp Virgin olive oil 2 Tbsp veganaise 1 cup chopped sweet red peppers 6 large potatoes 1 cup leeks ¼ cup chopped celery 1 Oz. mustard 1 Tbsp Black pepper 1 Tbsp Paprika 1 Tbsp Dried Dill    

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