Thread: Worm farm
25th May 2008, 07:05 PM #1
I mentioned my worm farm a while back, so thought I'd post a couple of pics. Its in an old bathtub, placed on a stand so there is room underneath for a bucket, and there is a slight slope for water to drain away into it.
The whole thing is well shaded, behind a slat fence on the east and under a locquat tree to the west, with a shed to the south protecting it from wind and full rain. I also have piece of shade cloth draped over it.
I put a mix of horse manure, clippings and leaves etc along with all the kitchen waste that doesn't go to the chooks...including citrus, coffee grinds, onion skins and oil! They handle it all, but come up asking for more when its manure on offer. They'll move into it within a day!
The compost is moved progressively towards the left, (drain end), and I seperate garden-ready castings over the drain by a row of bricks...always intended to make a wooden baffle, but this works ok.
I decant the "worm tea" that comes out the drain into plastic bottles and store in the shed, ready for fertilizing. Dilute it down, even 20-1, with water before applying to pot plants, citrus trees, vegies etc. I place handfuls of castings into every hole/furrow I dig for planting, and that includes vegie seeds, native seedlings etc. Its good stuff, and the worms get transplanted around our property.
Jeez I sound like Jackie French!
Change is inevitable, growth is optional.
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25th May 2008, 07:49 PM #2
Careful Andy, you'll inspire me to become a hippy farmer again!
26th May 2008, 10:46 AM #3
26th May 2008, 10:47 AM #4
think I'll stick ter good ole black teaRegards, Bob Thomas
26th May 2008, 10:51 AM #5
Must get around to setting mine up. I've got the bath.
My mate puts a bit of carpet over his, in contact with the top of the mulch."I don't practice what I preach because I'm not the kind of person I'm preaching to."
26th May 2008, 11:08 AM #6
27th May 2008, 03:50 PM #7
I had around 4-6 kg of worms in my old compost. We moved about a year back and I did not bring the compost over to the new place as there was not really any room for it. We've gone from 1/2 acre (2100sqm) property down to about 400sqm. After about 6 months I finally bought a commercial farm to suit the new house, 3 round trays with a lid on top and reservoir beneath. I went back to the old farm to gather some pedigree stock to start it off and there was nothing there. Of-course there wasn't, you have to feed the little fellows. Oh NO, all my workers gone!!!
After some thought I brought a few kilos of compost back with me and placed it in the new farm and put some weetbix and watermelon inside. Within around 10 days I had some little workers. They had hatched from the castings, there's lots of eggs in the old compost. Six months on I have a plethora of willing workers, and the numbers have just about caught up to our vegetable waste disposal rate and the odd pizza box. Soon I hope I will have enough again to be able to start putting paper, milk cartons, etc in as well. They slow down in winter as their ideal temperature is about 21C.
Andy Mac is there any reason why you don't put oil into your farm? Doesn't seem to bother my team, and they seem to work a bit quicker on coffee grounds.
Last edited by prozac; 27th May 2008 at 03:52 PM. Reason: Spoelling
27th May 2008, 05:22 PM #8
28th May 2008, 12:16 AM #9
A few years back a mob of scientific types were experimenting rehabilitating an old farm that had lots of soil contamination. Heavy metals etc. I think part of the farm may have been a quarry.
The gist of it was they set up a large scale breeding farm on site. The worms were "let loose" into the soil in a designated area & then "rounded-up" again a few days later. Don't ask me how as I can't remember, something to do with the cover of darkness. When all were accounted for they were incinerated - sounds like your average employer, "thanks for all your hard work" - and the ingested heavy metals etc weighed. They were able to turn the land from being unable to grow anything other than rocks into productive farmland once more.
26th Dec 2008, 04:28 PM #10
To give some of you an idea about the efficacy of the worm tea, I watered some "kalanchoe" (sp?) with worm tea. These little succulent type plants grow to around 400mm high (15-16"). With worm tea they tower around 1.8m tall (6') !!! The other plants don't react the same way but it does show it is mighty powerful stuff.prozac
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