Sunday, September 12, 2010

I harvested a nice pile of worm castings last week. I don't know what those other creatures are...the tan cocoons.

I like the pretty vertical worm. She/he looks a little like a sea horse.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Fresh worm poop!

I kept the worms outside on my deck much of the summer but it just got SO hot that I decided to bring them into the basement for some cooler temperatures. I've read that they prefer temps between about 60 and 85 and we've had an especially hot summer so I wondered how they fared. When I harvested these castings it appeared that I had a good number of worms but they were all large...many fewer small or medium worms. I wonder if only the strong and large could withstand the heat?

I love my worms even more now than I did before. They are so much more compliant than my bees. The amount of time I devote to both bees and worms is about the same, but the amount of time I spend worrying about the bees is way off the charts. A beekeeper in my general neighborhood lost her 8-yr-old hives when a tree fell on them in one of the recent storms. My hive is surrounded by big old trees just aching to fall down --- see

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Source of worms in the DC area.

Cycle Jerk asked "Do you know of any place local to buy worms? I too live in Silver Spring." Here's one young lady, she's about 11 or 12, who has a small business selling worms. If she's out of business, let me know and I'll give you some of my worms.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

A birthday book from my sister!

I'll let you know what happens in the story. I'm sure it has a twisted plot.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Starting a worm bin (for Sissy).

This site is "full and explicit," which you wanted:

These are my 1-6 instructions.
1. Buy 2 Tupperware-style containers and drill 1/8 inch holes all over the bottoms of each of them. Set each container on its lid.
2. Take a lot of newspapers--a big handful--and tear them into long shreds. Fill up each container with the shreds and add enough water to make it wet but not dripping wet. Fill it about half way up. Throw in a handful of soil from your yard, or use store-bought potting soil.
3. Buy 1 lb of worms through the mail. I used this company (about $24): You MUST use red worms, not earthworms from your garden.
4. Save up kitchen scraps so you have about a pound ready for when the worms arrive. Use banana and mango peels, apple cores, lettuce & other greens, coffee grounds, tea bags. Use nothing that came from an animal. Avoid oils and onions. I avoid citrus rind b/c it takes so long to break down. You'll need about 1/2 lb a day, more or less, to keep a pound of worms happy.
5. When the worms arrive in the mail make sure the newspaper in the bins is nice and moist. Add the worms gently in the middle of each bin. Add some of the kitchen scraps, cover with more of the wet shredded newspaper, stack the bins gently, put one lid on top and one lid on the bottom (to catch any liquid that may run out), and set the entire business in a low-light, out-of-the-way place. Leave them alone for a day or two. Then peek in and you should see them mingling in amongst the scraps. If they look too dry, sprinkle in some water. Cover and let them be.
6.In the beginning, the worms may take a while to get adjusted to their new home and to get through the first feeding.

Other thoughts:
If you want to avoid buying anything new here's an idea for a recycling bin:
"I have used a discarded 5 gallon bucket (available from restaurants, bakeries, other food establishments). You could also use 5 gallon buckets that had dry wall, etc., but the ones that had food items in them previously don't need to be decontaminated." (From

And the worms would be so happy if you let those kitchen scraps decay a bit while they are being shipped to you. Then when you give them their first meal, it will be in the perfect state for worms. They LOVE decayed anything.

[Top two photos are my guys today. Photo of bin is from]