Vermiculture with Nathan
Oct. 12, 2016
What is worm composting?
Worm composting or vermiculture is a way for food scraps to decompose with the help of worms. The worms will eat the food scraps and reduce the amount of time that it takes for the food to decompose. While a traditional pile compost method will take about 3-6 months to produce soil, the vermiculture method can be finished within 1 month. The worms, usually red wigglers, eat the organic material provided for them, such as egg shells, produce scraps, or coffee grounds, and the castings they produce is nicknamed “black gold”. The term comes from the fact that the compost the worms produce is highly nutritious and will increase vegetation yields.
Food waste makes up 40% of our daily trash, which ultimately ends up in landfills and has its own carbon footprint. In fact, if the carbon footprint of food waste were a country, it would rank 3rd, behind the US and China. One solution to reduce the amount of food waste that gets collected in landfills is composting. There are many benefits to composting besides reusing food scraps and reducing the waste in landfills. It saves money because the soil is created from organic material and better holds moisture, reducing the amount of water used to water plants. It also reduces/eliminates the need to use chemical fertilizers that end up contaminating our resources.
Nathan gave a presentation on worm composting and generated all of this content from the Solana Center’s website. https://www.solanacenter.org/sites/default/files/CIY%20FINAL.pdf
To get started, a composting bin is recommended for small spaces such as indoors or the patio, or if more room is available, a backyard will be the ideal place. Indoor and outdoor composting bins can be bought from the city of San Diego through the Solana Center website, and the city offers a rebate for the bin you purchase.
Vermiculture composting requires the worms, bedding and a compost container suitable to worms. Most food scraps can go into the bin, but some cannot. This includes meat, bones, cheese or other dairy products, and cooked foods. Produce scraps and eggshells are great additions for the worms, as well as coffee grounds and tea bags. Limit the amount of bread, spicy food, and plant scraps added.
To order a compost bin from the city follow this link: https://www.solanacenter.org/composting-supplies