I pulled the camera out tonight, and took a picture of the worm composter. Some recommend that holes be drilled in the bottom of plastic containers so that the liquid from the decomposing waste can drain out, preferably on to a tray and not the floor (the liquid makes a good manure tea). Otherwise, the liquid can make for uncomfortable worms in soggy bedding, and the contents can become stinky because of the anaerobic conditions. It’s also suggested that air vents be drilled 2 inches up from the bottom as well as at the top, for cross-ventilation. This model has neither, though the top air vents are decorated with a cute red apple and worm.
Alas, I discover too late that a worm composter can easily be made from a Roughneck storage container for half the price. Ventilation and drainage can easily be drilled, and covered on the inside with some landscape fabric to prevent the worms from red wriggling their way to accidental freedom. Ah well, it is a pretty green, and the apple thingie IS cute. And there’s no danger that I’ll mistake it for a box of summer clothes, tucking it away on a shelf in a cupboard somewhere for the next six months. There, I’ve convinced myself it was a worthwhile investment.
I arrived home tonight to find a big box in front of my door. Whoopee, my worm composter arrived!!! I ordered it a few days ago from Busch Systems International in Barrie. They were so sweet — I accidentally put the dog walker’s money in the same envelope when I sent out the cheque and order form (it was morning, and I don’t do mornings well). I didn’t even realize what I’d done until I opened the box and found a note from “Keri” enclosing a $20 bill. That’ll pay for half a pound of worms.
What’s with the worm composting?? It’s possibly an urge for another puppy sublimated by the acquisition of ANY kind of pet. After all, I did have a dream the other night that I got pregnant, and called the baby “Spot”. But that’s another story.
Actually, it solves two problems. It absolves me of the guilt I feel when I dump perfectly good banana peels and vegetable peels and dead plants into the garbage, and, it gives me access to compost. Compost is hard to do in an apartment, so this is an excellent alternative. Compost, and especially worm castings, are black gold. It makes plants grow like stink. It makes me look like I’m a really good gardener. It gives me about a pound’s worth of new pets.
I have yet to acquire said pets. I’ve made contact with Cathy the worm lady, who will be in Toronto on April 5th and can deliver my pound of red wriggler worms in person. She will be driving right by the Inn on the Park, where I hope to be escorting my Mom around an International Orchid Show and trying to keep my credit card in my wallet while I peruse the orchid vendor tables. Unfortunately, I haven’t quite worked out the logistics of meeting up with her at this venue to officially acquire my new pound of worms. Maybe my Mom will carry them around for me.
More on vermiculture
Suppliers of red wriggler worms
How to do worm composting
Worm composting basics