Red worms are special worms that are very beneficial to us. They live in a wet environment and dismantle any soft rotting veggie food to its minerals. They produce ‘humus’ which is a black solid waste and liquid worms casting which is liquid fertilizer.
The humus and the worm casting are the very condensed rich fertilizer that can nourish your plants to bring them near their full DNA potential.
The worms live in a dark wet environment like a box. I use a laundry basket for that. It gives them exposure to the air while keeping flies out. The holes in this basket are small enough so no worms can get out of the basket. The basket is put inside some container that the worm casting drips into.
Too much water can drown the worms, so I drilled a hole and placed a pipe to drain the casting into a bottle. The worm box does not smell at all (assuming you are not over feeding them). So, a small version of this construction is very suitable for home use allowing you to through any vegetable peels, vegetarian leftovers or rotting fruits into it. Instead of throwing those into the garbage can. Reducing your biological environmental footprint.
In my case, my wife stated that it is either her or the worms. I decided to keep her (for the time been) and moved the worm box to the community garden. For home use, there are commercial worm bins that fit small apartments and are cleaner to use.
The worms can eat daily food up to half their weight. So in a few days, they can dismantle several kilograms of food waste. To create worms casting you should pour some water into the box every few days and collect whatever dripped out. Use water that stood for several hours to remove the water chlorine. Chlorine might kill the Bacteria living in the box. You can pour the collected casting back into the box if you want to get more concentrated casting.
The worms themselves live meaningful and productive life. Having bread and entertainment (“Panem et Circenses”) they reproduced rapidly. I found that lack of calcium hamper their reproduction rate so I am adding grained egg shells to their food. (And by that to the worm casting fertilizer I get). If you grow chickens you can feed them with some worms daily.
The warm casting can be diluted and using a watering can irrigate your plants. Humus can also be harvest and spread in your garden/pots/trays. To harvest Humus, you should put some Humus in a small box. Place the small box in the worm box and make sure no food gets into the small box. The worms will migrate into the area with the food and you will get worms-free Humus.
If you grow plants in a hydroponic system, dilute the worm casting. In 5 to 10 times with dechlorinated water and use it in the system.
Using red worms allow you to reduce your garbage footprint and utilize your food waste for growing plants and food. Making you more self-sufficient in your life. To further nourish and protect your plants you can make “compost tea” and spray it on your plants.
Compost tea is worm casting that we grow aerobic bacteria in it. The compost tea is sprayed over plants leaves and it nourishes them. It also forms a protective layer on top the leaves. Protecting them from viruses, bugs and insects.
Here is my recipe for tasty compost tea:
Take a 5 gallons bucket. Use 2.3 gallons of worm casting. Add 2.3 dechlorinated water. Add half a cup of sugar. Use an aquarium air pump. Connect an air tube into the pump. Put some weight (like an iron nut) on the other side of the air tube. To make it sink into the bucket. Don’t use aquarium air-stone as it emits small bubbles that break microorganisms in the water.
Plug the air pump into electricity and let it brew for 24-48 hours.
After that time, disconnect the air-pump. The tea contains millions of aerobic bacteria that are less harmful than anaerobic bacteria. To be on the safe side, keep it away from children, don’t breath the spray and wash your hands after dealing with it.
I use a garden sprayer to spray the tea on my plant’s leaves.
Any access compost tea should be poured into the soil of your garden/pots. This way you add life to it!