How to Separate Worms from Compost and Bedding

There are several reasons why you might want to separate your composting worms from their bedding. Perhaps it is time to harvest the finished compost. Or maybe something has gone REALLY wrong in the bin, and you need to start your bin over again. Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm offers several techniques for separating your worms from most of their bedding. If your worms have been munching on scraps for more than a few months, there should be plenty of “black gold” (worm castings) in the bin. Worm castings are an all-natural, nutrient-rich fertilizer for the garden and houseplants. They are also filled with friendly microbes that are good for the soil. Once in a while, a worm bin has an intractable problem. If it is sopping wet, you can try blotting up puddles, opening the drainage holes, and adding dry bedding (such as peat moss, shredded newspaper or coconut coir). If your worm bin smells bad, you can remove offending scraps, mitigate the pH, take out mold and mildew, and avoid over-feeding. Sometimes an ant colony turns an outdoor bin into a nursery and if removing the lid doesn’t discourage them, it might be time to cut your losses. Worms might be trying to escape en masse. If you try to fix it, and it can’t be fixed, it’s time to start over. Attract Worms with Food If time is on your side, the most natural way to make worms assemble together is with food. This technique is easiest if … Continue reading How to Separate Worms from Compost and Bedding