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Worm bin question

I've been thinking about doing a worm box but I'm a little scared of it. Where do you keep your box? Would it be too cold if I kept them in a garage?
--- Erin

Worms from our worm binI've been meaning to post a worm update for a while, so I appreciate the question.  The savvy reader will recall that we were given a bunch of worms three and a half months ago and made them a low tech worm bin which gave us a bunch of compost tea a month later.  And then I stopped talking about them.

The reason you didn't hear any more about worms is because they are the easiest livestock you'll ever have.  We feed all of our kitchen scraps to the chickens, so the only thing which goes in the worm bin is tea bags (after they've been used twice.)  Contrary to popular wisdom, I just throw the wet tea bags on top of the bin rather than bothering the worms by burying the tea bags.  I don't even open the tea bags up.  The older tea bags get buried by newer tea bags, and the worms and fungi start to work on the older ones once they're thoroughly submerged.  I poked in the bin a bit before making this post and was thrilled to see pitch black dirt down there!

A worm from our worm binWhich is all to say, don't be intimidated by worm bins.  To answer your specific questions, we keep our worm bin under the sink, which makes it very easy to toss in tea bags every day.  The garage would probably work, although worms do best at a temperature of above 55 F.  (There are actually two species of redworms that folks use for vermicomposting, and one is active at lower temperatures than the other.  See here for more details.)

The only problem we've had with our worm bin is fruit flies, which seems to be a popular problem which causes many folks to give up on them.  Indifferent housekeeper that I am, I don't particularly care about a few fruit flies, but if they bug you, this website lists a bunch of hints for dealing with the problem.

Our only other complaint with our worm bin is that it took us so long to get started on it!  This summer, we plan to expand our vermiculture operation as much as possible and we highly recommend that all gardeners do the same.

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