Does your garden or vege patch needing a little perking up? Then perhaps you could consider investing in a wormery. Why? Because the nutrient-rich worm compost that emerges from it is so fertile, it is called “black gold.” Your garden is going to love it!
A wormery in your garden? Yep, that’s right, let’s invite those worms in and have a little worm party. A wormery is not stinky, not ugly, and not a big hassle. It is in fact a very effective way of turning organic matter from the kitchen into vermicompost (or worm compost, for the uninitiated). A wormery also has another by-product called leachate, a liquid feed which is perfect for pot plants and the vege patch. And not only is your garden going to be happy, the amount of waste going into your bin will be reduced, making your wallet happy too.
Worms are busy little critters. They compost quickly, in fact they are the fastest natural composters. And they eat an amazing array of stuff. Amongst this is vege scraps, fruit and peel, tea leaves, coffee grounds and the filters. They also eat cooked veges, hair clippings, pet hair and all sorts of light cardboard. And they love crushed egg shells too. While they eat all this stuff, worms add their own ingredients to the waste. This includes beneficial enzymes and bacteria, which help to break down organic matter in the soil and thereby release more nutrients for the plants. And also added is a plant growth hormone, which encourages faster plant growth.
And you’d think this would all be a little stinky. But no! The worms aren’t pongy at all, because they work on the micro-organisms which cause odours. In fact they are so unstinky that you can leave the wormery outside your kitchen door for convenience. The worms love an aerobic and wet environment, so they will be gentle on your nose as long as there is enough air and moisture circulating through the system. Owners of wormeries have even reported that if they stick their head inside it, they notice a ‘composty’ sweet smell or even an earthy chrysanthemum or tomato plant smell.
So you have your gorgeous new wormery. What type of inhabitants should you get? The Tiger Worm is probably the best at the job. It survives in a wide variety of conditions and it has a big appetite. And these chaps breed fast too, so you won’t have to introduce new worms into the system at any stage. And worms can control their breeding too (unlike us humans). They regulate how many worm babies come along according to what’s happening around them, so that they don’t overpopulate. Some worms might make an escape bid. However this is normal and the worst thing that can happen is that you may have an extra few worms in the garden. The birds would probably be delighted and visit more often, so it’s all good.
There are several suppliers of wormeries in Ireland. A good place to start is www.wormery.ie. Happy worming!