cynthia_h
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cynthia_h wrote: So we fast forward to Spring 2007. I'm helping my GF turn her compost pile--she also has a BioStack--and ask her for a quart of worms. I've acquired supplies and now want to have back-ups upon back-ups in case something dire happens again.

The worms now live in their Worm Factory (purchased at county/municipal discount) in the carport under an old army blanket. More of them live in the BioStack. I've given a "quart of worms" to several people via FreeCycle.

But I must say that the first worms did *not* double their number in anything close to a month or even three months. They took their time settling in and seem to have found an ideal population density. I don't find ever-increasing numbers of Eisenia foetida in the Worm Factory or the BioStack; they seem happy as they are.
The "first" worms here are the ones I got from GF in Spring 2007 for the Worm Factory. They get *excellent* care (read elsewhere in the forums) and did nothing like double their numbers in a month and again in two months, showing the exponential growth you describe. There were good numbers of them after about three months, so I took a quart of them and moved them to the BioStack for "insurance" against any illness on my part or neglect by DH in the future. Since then, I've given away several quarts of worms to people who request them on my local FreeCycle list.

I'm just saying that the doubling time may be unrealistic for some worm-keepers. These invertebrates are hard workers, but reproduction seems to be slower than often described.

Cynthia

Imperialboy
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So what should I do now?
https://whatcom.wsu.edu/ag/compost/easywormbin.htm

Build one of those and then start?
I will throw a wet cardboard out on the lawn tonight and see what I can get, see if there are any living in my yard.

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soil
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I'm just saying that the doubling time may be unrealistic for some worm-keepers. These invertebrates are hard workers, but reproduction seems to be slower than often described.
even if you don't believe me, populations still grow exponentially. so given enough time youll have more worms than you can deal with. and if anyone doesnt, there doing something wrong.

i personally have found worms given the right environment to increase in population greatly. i wouldn't have thousands of worms if it was not true in some situations

good thing there is more than one right way to make vermicompost.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

DoubleDogFarm
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Alright, alright you two put your gloves back on. :lol:

Soil, Have you posted your operation here. Sure sounds good to me. Pictures, techniques?

I've tried raising, BSF and meal worms, but not a large scale vermicompost. Looking for a protein source for my ducks. :wink:

Eric

Imperialboy
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Isn't of this back and forth talk. Just post your methods/photos/ whatever!

I'm still confused here and all the help I can get will be great:
So what should I do now?
https://whatcom.wsu.edu/ag/compost/easywormbin.htm

Build one of those and then start?
I will throw a wet cardboard out on the lawn tonight and see what I can get, see if there are any living in my yard.

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rainbowgardener
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That's what I did! Just bought the storage containers from the local big box and got started, with worms from my compost pile. I bought two storage containers. Drilled holes in the bottom of one and set it on top of the lid from the second one. Lid from the first one is on top of it.

I put damp shredded paper in the bottom for bedding, then some food, then a bunch of fall leaves, dampened everything, covered it with dampened brown paper bags, then the lid. The worms from my compost pile aren't red wrigglers but they eat kitchen scraps and leaves and turn it into worm castings and worm tea (which accumulates in the bottom lid). I have added more fall leaves twice now, as the original ones have mostly disappeared. So I still don't see why I care whether I have red wrigglers or not. I'm not doing a large scale operation, so I don't care whether I'm getting the maximum amount of food digestion possible.

I've been giving them a loose cup of food twice a week (more like 1/2 cup if it was packed down). I'm assuming since I just added more worms, I will need to increase the food, though I guess if they are hungry they can always eat leaves. If it seems like things are drying out, I occasionally pour a little more water on top of the leaves. Otherwise there doesn't seem to be much they need.

Sometime in spring, I'm going to drill holes in the 2nd bin and quit putting any food in the first one. Put bedding, food, leaves in the second one and set it right down on top of the leaves in the first one. Presumably the worms will migrate up to where the food is (have to be sure the holes are big enough!) and then I can collect whatever is left behind in the first one, which seems to me that it will be a mixture of worm castings, some leftover bits of bedding (much of which has disappeared), some leaves....

Even if it isn't "pure" worm castings, I assume it will be good stuff to add to my garden.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

Imperialboy
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Thanks rainbow! Guess I'll start with that link then. Got any photos of your setup rainbow?

What worms are best?
After lifting up my cardboard over my grass last night; found these little guys. 5 total

[img]https://i51.tinypic.com/15nnl7d.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i56.tinypic.com/122onic.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i54.tinypic.com/2ylpb2t.jpg[/img]

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Kisal
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Those are not worms. They are very common garden pests. The ones in the first two pics are slugs, and the third one is a brown garden snail. :evil:
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

DoubleDogFarm
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Slugs! Ducks love them. :wink:

Eric

Imperialboy
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LOL.
Bummer.

Guess not many worms that can help me then? Should I try again?

The Helpful Gardener
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Quit going the cheap IB, and pony up for the worms. It's worth it.

What's your time worth? Twenty an hour?

You are already nearly there!

:lol:

HG
Scott Reil

DoubleDogFarm
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$40. :D

treehopper
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Re: How to Find Earthworms?

Try fiddling or grunting...see YouTube.
I started a compost pile, because I gardened. Now I find myself gardening, so I have someplace for my compost!!

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rainbowgardener
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Re: How to Find Earthworms?

tree hopper - I like your signature line. That is in fact how I started gardening. I started composting to keep good stuff from going in to the waste stream and thought it was so cool how you could pile up garbage and dead stuff and come out with rich dark earth. So THEN I started gardening to have something to do with it. :)
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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