Vermicompost Growth Experiments

Yes, these are the marigolds I chose for my vermicompost experiment – read below to find out why.

I decided to start up a couple of preliminary growth trials using the 1/4″ screened vermicompost I’ve been harvesting from my backyard wooden worm bin. Nothing scientific here – mostly just for fun, but if there seems to be fairly significant differences among treatments, I’ll likely try again with more reps per treatment.

I am testing the growth of plants in three different mixes: 1) Pro-Mix potting soil 2) Pro-Mix with ~33% (by volume) vermicompost, and 3) Pro-Mix with ~33% (by volume) specialty vermicompost mix (vermicompost + rock dust + coffee grounds). I had a bunch of marigolds on-hand so I decided to try growing some of them. As you can see in the first picture, I selected two plants that were rather pitiful in appearance. In a sense this is my attempt at giving the vermicompost treatments a slight disadvantage right off the bat – I’ll be curious to see how successfully they can bounce back (assuming they can). Again, certainly not scientific – but I think it will be fun anyway!

The other experiment I set up is basically the same except for the fact that I am germinating and growing chia seeds instead of marigolds. These seeds are so small and annoying to try and count that I ended up using a little bottle cap in an attempt to semi-standardize the quantity of seeds going into each pot.

As you can see, LOTS of seeds in each pot – but hey, they’re chia seeds so almost mandatory to grow a little green carpet of them, right?? Haha

Anyway – nothing super fancy, but will certainly pave the way to some more serious trials.
Stay tuned!

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    • steve k
    • June 15, 2011

    Do you think coffee grounds help with water retension?

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