Composting with Worms
Worm composting is a cold-composting method that doesn't require any turning of the pile.
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To improve soil's growing power, organic matter is a must. You can buy pre-made compost or make your own to incorporate into your garden. "Between their kitchen waste, lawn clippings and the leaves that fall, most people have plenty of organic matter that just needs to be composted. Then it's ready to go onto their soil," says organic gardener Carol Reed.
To produce your own rich organic matter, try worm composting. "The beautiful thing about worm composting is that it's a cold compost. It's very clean and easy to do. You don't have to go out and turn things all the time. There's no work involved, and there's no smell. And, the result is some of the best fertilizer available on the planet."
You can buy worm composting kits which are often made of plastic, or make your own out of wood. Reed made hers out of a 3' x 4' plywood box that's one foot tall in the front and two feet tall in the back. The box has a half-inch piece of plywood as the lid.
There is no bottom floor because the composting box is set over a 12-inch-deep hole in the ground lined with bricks. "This method provides a perfect environment for worms because they love to be left alone, like to eat, like the dark, and they like it moist."
Absorbent bedding material like coconut fiber lines the bottom of the hole to provide a bed for the worms. Several inches of bedding is optimum. Shredded newspaper, chopped straw, garden leaves and sawdust work also work. The more types of bedding you provide, the more nutrients the worms will digest.
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