Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Garden and Garbage - The Poop Loop

Well I was a bit down in the dumps when I got home from work. Pain in my arm and neck and a conversation with me real estate agent about my short sale-deed-in-lieu-foreclosure mess.

It was a lovely evening here in Northern California, so I did some pottering about in the garden.

Firstly I picked the second crop of strawberries that we have grown!!! The first crop picture above was a bit small, only two of them, but the second one was a whole five!! If strawberry growth obeys the laws of mathematics, then the next crop should be 12.5 strawberries. Of course chaos theory is part of maths too.

Next I checked on my worm bin. We've had the worm bin for about 18 months now and struggled at times to keep it going. We've tried everything. I think the first batch of worm all drowned themselves ("drowned dead sir !"), because the spigot in the bin allowed about 4 inches of worm tea to build up, so if any worms ventured down below they would inevitable die.

So I modified my worm bin. I punched a hole in the bottom and then glue some mosquito netting over it to stop insects from getting in and worm from getting out. I then made a raised platform and put another mosquito netting frame on that platform to stop the worm from wiggling to the bottom.

This way we managed to keep alive the 2nd batch of worms we bought through the winter. The red wigglers were far outnumbered by the white pot worms though, and although not harmful, they’ve just not as cuddly and cute as the red wigglers.

When we moved house I set the bin up in one shady corner of the garden, where it got thoroughly soaked, and that’s when the population of the white pot worms exploded.

So, when I was convalescing after my surgery I went through the bin little by little sorted the red wigglers into a new temporary home and getting rid of the pot worms.

Once I was happy with the new colony of red wigglers I placed them pack in the worm bin with some food and some ground up coconut husk and left them there for about 6 weeks, untouched.

So, I was very happy with my nice surprise when I opened the worm bin to find lots of big fat red wigglers all looking very happy and content!

The worm castings, or their poop if you want o not dress it up so much, will be valuable gardeners gold for my veggies this summer. It’s a poop loop cos any veggies we don’t eat, or the cuttings from say the end of a zucchini will end up right back in the bin, so they can eat it, poop it out and then I can spread it on the garden again!

1 comment:

  1. I see nobody's commenting on your riveting reports of worms and garbage, so I figured I'd better. I think if you want to increase readership you need to sex things up a bit. Nude composting... that sort of thing.