For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Bentley (“Compost Guy”) Christie and I’ve been a crazed worm composting fanatic (or “vermiholic” if you prefer) for nearly 20 yrs now. I started this website back in 2007 with the simple intention of sharing my passion with the world. So far so good! Things have certainly progressed since the early days, though, and the website has provided me with an amazing opportunity to get to know a LOT of other “worm heads” from across North America and around the world!
It’s been nearly 4 months since my last walking windrow update – which is NO indication of how important this system has been for me in 2019.
It has completely exceeded my expectations. The windrow has provided a steady supply of Red Worms for my business this season, and there is now a LOT of rich vermicompost at the starting end that is ready for harvesting/screening.
I wasn’t able to get out to the project site much in July. Before this week, the last time I was there I noticed (more…)
The question of what you are and are not “allowed” to add to a worm composting system always makes for an interesting (often heated) discussion in the RWC Facebook group.
On the one hand, I agree these “rules” can be helpful for keeping newbies out of trouble, but on the other I feel it can send the wrong message…and lead to the proliferation of needless fear-mongering.
Nearly ALL forms of organic waste can be processed in a vermicomposting system – it’s usually just a matter of how! Different materials can require different handling/optimization practices for best results (or even to simply avoid killing your worms), but it really just comes down to learning the proper approach and easing yourself into it.
For a little while now I’ve been pondering the idea of (more…)
The last time I wrote about “homemade manure” (HMM) was nearly 6 years ago. Crazy. At the time I had recently made a mix using wood stove pellets, alfalfa cubes and chopped up zucchinis.
It was a great batch of HMM – and even more memorable when it ended up infested with stable fly larvae (think biting housefly), leading to good times once a lot of the mix had been moved indoors.
[I seem to recall wearing a hoodie and carrying a rolled up newspaper every time I went down to the basement for a while after that. lol]
While I may not have (more…)
Back in early June I wrote about a “Super Simple Vermicomposting Pit Garden” I set up very quickly as an illustration of the fact that you don’t need to dig a massive trench in order to reap the rewards of this type of in-ground vermi-gardening!
It’s been a bit of a weird season for sure. Damp cool spring weather seemed to switch over to hot dry summer weather – neither has been exactly ideal for growing squash-family crops.
Things have come along with my my cucumber plant though – and I’ve been getting some nice cukes (like one pictured below), and the plant is (more…)
I was recently thinking about the low costs associated with starting up a small worm farming business and the title of a book I really enjoyed – “The $100 Start-Up” (by Chris Guillebeau) – popped into my head and got me thinking.
What if someone handed me $100 and said “start up a worm farming business from scratch, and AT LEAST double or triple your money (earn back $200 or$300) within 2 months”.
Kind of a neat idea, but it didn’t take long for me to dismiss it as “too easy”. Even a basic worm re-selling strategy (buying in bulk then sell smaller amounts) could likely yield that sort of ROI.
OK…so what if it was only a $50 budget and I had to AT LEAST quadruple it (make $200) in 2 months?
Last month, after stumbling across a fascinating article I had shared on Facebook (several years before) about a winery using some sort of bio-filtration bed containing composting worms, I found myself completely immersed in the topic of “vermi-filtration” – with most of my attention on the work of a company called BioFiltro.
Back at the end of May I wrote about a new bin set up to test the viability of Comfrey as a sole worm food for Red Worms (see “Comfrey as Sole Food Source for Worms“).
[Just as a reminder, when I say “sole food source” it should be assumed that plenty of bedding materials will be added as well to help keep things balanced.]
As you can likely guess, this has been (and will likely continue to be) a very low key experiment. Comfrey can take some time to break down – even when chopped up – and it is not something I just want to keep piling into the bin, due to the nitrogen (and water) content.
Today is just about exactly 3 weeks from the start of the experiment (and nothing was (more…)