How to Find Earthworms?



How to Find Earthworms?

Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:07 am

How do you find Earthworms? In your backyard, sewer drain, etc
Don't have time yet to buy some worm castings, but want wouldn't mind making some castings myself and putting some in containers.

Thanks
Imperialboy
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:23 am

I think most people buy them. You'll have to set up a worm bin of some sort, and feed the worms regularly, in order to produce worm castings at home. I don't keep worms, so I'm not knowledgeable about any of the details.

I think the worms kept in bins are called red wrigglers. I get them (worms that look like them, anyway) and night crawlers in my compost bin that sits on the ground. (I don't know that night crawlers would do well in a worm bin. They very well might, I just don't know. :) )
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Kisal
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:23 am

Are you looking for earthworms / nightcrawlers or composting worms?

If you have farms or stables nearby, you can often find composting worms in manure piles.

Image

Eric
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:31 am

Well I'm just trying to find worms that are used for worm castings.
If not, I'll just go buy worm castings when I have time to go out.

I think that a container with worm castings as well as worms to continue to make more might work well.
Imperialboy
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:37 am

I think it's Soil that has the large bathtub worm operation. I'll let him answer your questions. :) :wink:


Eric
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 2:54 am

Rainbowgardener has posted some good links in this thread, including a pictorial showing how to build your own worm bin:

http://www.helpfulgardener.com/phpBB2/v ... ins#178674
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Kisal
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 3:01 am

A quick way to get local worms to come to your party is to moisten an area, dump some UCGs and a layer of leaves, cover with a wet corrugated cardboard, then put a bag of something on top of it (mulch, sand, gravel, whatever).

This only works during the warmer months when worms are closer to the surface and not during the freeze. I love early spring, after the ground thaws, when I start seeing little mounds of "worm signs" all over my garden and lawn. 8)

I mentioned elsewhere too, that my DH puts his leftover fishing worms in my compost pile... so a local Bait Shop?
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applestar
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 3:16 am

Thanks applestar
Imperialboy
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 12:24 pm

I just turned over my compost pile yesterday and there were hundreds of earthworms in the working section of the pile. I added big clump of them to my worm bin. I started the worm bin back in November just with worms from the compost pile then. But in Nov. it was cold and the worms were a lot harder to find.

Most people do buy worms for worm bins, but mine seems to be working just fine with the compost worms. I'll be interested to see if they need a lot more food, now that I just doubled the population of the bin...
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rainbowgardener
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 4:36 pm

first off the earthworms you find in the ground are most likely not composting worms. most earthworms have different feeding,burrowing habits compared to the common composting worm( the red wiggler, aka Eisenia fetida). you can sometimes get them at bait stores but for the price you pay and the amount of worms you get, your basically getting ripped off( not for fishing though its a good deal).

if you don't want to buy castings, but are willing to buy worms. that is a smart decision. there is nothing like homemade castings, and buying a nice supply of worms to get yourself started is the quickest path to buckets and buckets of castings. with proper care your worms will multiply fast, giving you the opportunity to build another bin for more castings, or give some away for someone else to start a bin. which reminds me of the best way to get worms, find someone close by who has worms, chances are they will have more than a few handfuls to spare.

so the best place to get worms is a local fellow vermicomposter. chances are they will like organic gardening too giving you someone else to chat with possibly.

or just buy some online, 1 lb is like 20$, that can turn into a hundred lbs of worms in a year if you manage them right.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.
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soil
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 5:09 pm

Alrighty. So I'll buy a small bag of castings first to use now. Then I'll buy some earthworms.

If I buy earthworms from nursery, I need to have a compost bib for them?
Or use the link that rainbow instructed?
Imperialboy
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Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:52 pm

Well I figure the worms I find in my compost pile are there because they are busy turning my kitchen scraps and the other stuff in the compost pile into worm castings. So why shouldn't they do the same thing in a worm bin? And why should I buy worms when there are hundreds of them in my compost pile? So far the worm bin seems to be working just fine with worms from my compost pile.
"Only when we see that we are part of the totality of the planet, not a superior part with special privileges, can we work effectively to bring about an earth restored to wholeness." Elizabeth Watson, Quaker
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rainbowgardener
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