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A garden is only as good as the ground that it's planted in. Discussion forum for the many ways to improve the soil where we plant our gardens.

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Old February 13, 2012   #61
z_willus_d
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The worms will not eat the eggshells, not in my experience at least. I like to save them and grind them up in an old blender. They create a white dust that smells almost like scrambled eggs. Anyway, I just drop the dust into the mix and it gets pretty well integrated with the end result. I expect it makes for a nice Calcium injection.
-naysen
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Old February 13, 2012   #62
dice
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Eggshells end up kind of chunky in the worm bin, so I usually add them
to the compost pile instead. I do sprinkle an occasional handful of
dolomite, gypsum, or greensand into the worm bin to add some grit.
(I figure that it will pass through their digestive system and simply add
to the nutritional value of the worm castings.)
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Old February 16, 2012   #63
Tracydr
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I had worms but couldn't get them through the heat of summer here in AZ. I might try again next fall. The compost was amazing and well worth the effort of sifting. It also introduced red wrigglers to my garden.
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Old February 17, 2012   #64
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I had worms but couldn't get them through the heat of summer here in AZ. I might try again next fall. The compost was amazing and well worth the effort of sifting. It also introduced red wrigglers to my garden.
Mine live indoors year round in their worm condo. There is no odor or bugs. They are in the laundry room.
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Old February 17, 2012   #65
chancethegardener
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Originally Posted by lurley View Post
Red wigglers won't survive in soil, they like the area on top of the soil and below the mulch or leaf litter. Up here they would just freeze altogether. Regular earthworms dont like to be in the composter, they will escape if they can, they like being in the ground. You live in Florida so I think I'd be using the reds for fishing bait, they wiggle wonderfully, maybe that's where they got their name? and they don't die straight away in the water like nightcrawlers do, a very nice feature.
lurley, do you think that even in Florida red wigglers wouldn't survive? We really don't have freezing temperatures here and I have found out that after I added worms to the raised beds the worm population has significantly increased. Of course, not all the worms are red wigglers. Anyway it is not an easy thing for me to tell the difference between a red wiggler and an earthworm especially at an early stage of their life cycle . Also apparently I accidentally added some earthworms into my composter when I dumped some soil in one of my pots into the composter. Looks like those worms were very happy in the composter and multiplied. Their size scares me since now they look like creatures from a sci-fi movie .
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Old February 27, 2012   #66
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I wish those BSFs or some other worm would take up residence in my horse manure pile. What kind of worm do I need for that?
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Old February 27, 2012   #67
dice
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Probably most kinds of earthworm will digest horse manure, but red
wigglers will likely be happiest there. I have found them in piles of
aged horse manure that I added to the garden.
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Old February 28, 2012   #68
Tracydr
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I have had red wrigglers appear survive in a shady part of my garden where I've used worm compost, so maybe they like southern climes, especially where they have lots of mulch? The spot they are in has lots of wood mulch and some horse manure.
I'm going to try moving some into a pile of horse manure, see what happens. Maybe they just need to be introduced.
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Old February 28, 2012   #69
dice
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Red wigglers naturally live in the top few inches of soil, right under
a mulch or "last year's weeds" or a layer of leaf litter. I read a report
in a vermicomposting thread online where someone added horse
manure to his worm bin (all red wigglers). In 2 days all of it was gone
except the bits of half-digested hay in it. In 2 more days, the half-digested
hay was gone, too.
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Old February 29, 2012   #70
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Is there anyway I can do this outdoors in Texas? Maybe in the garage? The temps here get into the 100's during the summer and it gets pretty hot in the garage as well. I don't think my wife will allow them inside.
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Old February 29, 2012   #71
Tracydr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dice View Post
Red wigglers naturally live in the top few inches of soil, right under
a mulch or "last year's weeds" or a layer of leaf litter. I read a report
in a vermicomposting thread online where someone added horse
manure to his worm bin (all red wigglers). In 2 days all of it was gone
except the bits of half-digested hay in it. In 2 more days, the half-digested
hay was gone, too.
Wow, maybe I do need to get some more worms. I've been meaning to start another proper compost pile for my manure, now that I don't have any more lasagna gardens going.
I just don't have many produce leftovers, since the chicken's eat almost everything. But, if they can work on some manure, I bet I could keep them going in a large barrel, despite summer heat!
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Old February 29, 2012   #72
Tracydr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArcherB View Post
Is there anyway I can do this outdoors in Texas? Maybe in the garage? The temps here get into the 100's during the summer and it gets pretty hot in the garage as well. I don't think my wife will allow them inside.
See, this is what I'm trying to figure out, too.
Although, there is a big worm place in Tuscon. Not sure how they're set up. I think they have outdoor concrete bins, below ground level but really don't know. Maybe just dirt pits?
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Old February 29, 2012   #73
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If BSFs are so common in the heat, how do you purposely attract them? Maybe I could use them for a compost bin for Sumer, dump that compost, then start up some worms this fall. Anybody do BSFs on purpose? I've heard they're great to raise for chickens, too.
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Old March 1, 2012   #74
dice
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This historical document on worm farming has instructions for
a big outdoor box set in the ground in Section 3, Lesson 4,
"Housing the Earthworm Stock." Assume that scientists know more
about earthworms now than they did then, and that your most
economical feedstocks for the worms are not necessarily what
they were then. Still, what he recommended worked, which is
why he wrote it up as what was probably a lecture series.
http://journeytoforever.org/farm_lib...oliverToC.html
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Old March 5, 2012   #75
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I've been doing a good bit of research on raising worms for compost and fish bait. My main dilemma is feeding them. If I get into raising them, I want to do it on a large enough scale to produce worms to hopefully sell to fishermen on a nearby very large public fishing lake. The only food I can see that I could possibly have enough of would be lawn clippings for green and fallen leaves for brown. What are your opinions on being able to raise them with only these two types of food?
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