MikeP09
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Posts: 44
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 7:09 pm
Location: Somerville, NJ

worm composting newbie

I just ordered 2000 red wigglers to start vericomposting in a 22 gallon plastic bin. should I get some calcium/lime? They asked me if I wanted some when I ordered the worms. Any other tips?

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hendi_alex
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Posts: 3567
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 7:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

I've never done anything other than add leaves/leaf mold, some aged manure if available, worms and kitchen scraps. I don't add any oils, meat scraps, or animal products. I don't pour liquids in the mix. The worms absolutely thive in our arrangement. Make sure the container has some drain holes, but not done in such a way that the worms crawl through. Keep the container in the shade during hot weather.

Good luck!
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

MikeP09
Full Member
Posts: 44
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 7:09 pm
Location: Somerville, NJ

I'm guessing I can use any type shredded paper as the bedding for the bin. My girlfriend brought back a bag full of shredded office paper. Is there a difference? I always hear people talking about shredded newspaper.

rot
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Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 1:15 am
Location: Ventura County, CA, Sunset 23

paper

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Shredded office paper breaks down faster than newspaper. Newspaper has more lignin.

Shredded office paper comes from photocopiers and laser printers primarily. The non-toxic toner from photocopiers and laser printers is essentially plastic. Per Xerox, the paper will break down but the toner will not. I'm ok with toner and use shredded office paper quite a bit. Some people may not like plastic toner in their plants especially if they're growing vegetables for consumption.

Most American newspapers use soy ink. It turns out that the old inks with heavy metals require haz mat handling these days and it's cheaper to use soy based inks. I don't trust anything that might be printed ahead of time because it might come from overseas where they don't care about using hazardous inks.

two cents
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