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How to Start a Red Wiggler Composting Bin
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How to Start a Red Wiggler Composting Bin

City container gardeners as well as farmers should consider a composting bin. The bins are good for the environment. Composting bins save money on fertilizer for gardeners and recycle items that would otherwise be discarded. Parents, red wigglers make the perfect pet. Very little care is required.

  • Red wigglers are the most common type of worm utilized for composting bins. The castings from red wigglers are rich in nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium, making these worms. The worms can eat their body weight in organic material each day and reproduce rapidly.
  • Unlike a bacteria composting bin, which needs a hot space, a worms prefer a comfortable temperature between 55 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. A mudroom or laundry room might be a good choice for a red wiggler composting bin. In mild climates, it is possible to place the composting bin outdoors.
  • The size of the composting bin depends on the gardener. A plastic five to ten dollar storage container with a lid makes an ideal composting bin. The plastic pickle buckets that restaurants discard are great also. The container should be a solid piece with a lid to keep the red wigglers from escaping.
  • Recycle old newspapers by cutting into small strips or use shredded paper from a document shredder. Colored ink is not good for the worms, so discard newspaper pages with colored ink. Wet the paper, and then squeeze the paper so that it no longer drips water. Fill one-half the bin with the wet shredded paper.
  • Add soil, sand or sawdust to the bin. This allows the worms to turn the scraps into fertilizer.
  • Add coffee grounds along with vegetable and fruit peels once a week in small portions. The vegetable and fruit peels can be cut into small pieces for faster composting. Adjust the amount of food to a level that the worms can finish in one week. Over feeding the worms will result in a foul odor. Avoid dairy and meat products.
  • Remove the composted material every three to six months and add new bedding material.
  • 

Royalty-free picture courtesy of 123rf.com.

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Leave a Comment

  1. Carolyn
    Carolyn
    After multiple attempts to download a picture, for the article over 20 minutes, still unable to download a picture. I tried the 123rf.com photos that normally download with no problem and still only the default picture.
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  2. Roopam
    Good one Carolyn...informative...I didnt know colored ink is not good for worms...voted!
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    1. Carolyn
      Carolyn
      Thanks Roopam! Several articles that I read online said not to use newsprint with colored ink.
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  3. Kate Noel
    Kate Noel
    Voted! I'm very interested in composting, so this was great. I've never heard of red wigglers but I'm going to check them out when I get my bin and other materials together.
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    1. Carolyn
      Carolyn
      Kate Noel, thanks for the vote and comment! It is definitely time to start planning a composting bin now for a garden this spring!
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  4. SnakeWitch
    Out of the two compost suggestions you propose, which is better and why? Or are they just different - needed for different types of plants? This one seems a bit more slow to produce, and I think it may be better, though. Am I right? Voted! Don't forget to stop by my new piece, too!
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    1. Carolyn
      Carolyn
      Snake Witch thanks for the vote and comment! I would suggest a worm composting bin for the cooler climates. A composting bin in a plastic storage bin with a lid can be kept in a mudroom so that the temperature is comfortable for the worms. A bacterial composting bin needs lots of heat and you would definitely not want one indoors due to the smell. Although if water is kept at the right level in a bacterial composting bin...the smell should not be bad. Do not put too much produce in the worm composting bin and you should not have a problem with odor.
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  5. Veganara
    Veganara
    Voted. Great idea, and what an intriguing title! I had never heard of red wigglers! It is their excreta that becomes the compost then? Ewww! Not a pleasant thought, but a wonderful "green " idea.
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    1. Carolyn
      Carolyn
      Thanks Veganara for the vote and the comment! Yes, but then worms are in the ground naturally and vegetables are grown in the ground....but it is definitely an unpleasant thought...but so is manure! LOL!
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  6. Veganara
    Veganara
    PS I have just posted a new recipe, Do-It-Yourself Doritos! Please drop by when you get a chance (I am sure you won't regret it!)
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    1. Carolyn
      Carolyn
      They sound wonderful...voted!
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  7. Virtually Homemade
    Virtually Homemade
    Voted - fun post! Check out my pumpkin face mask post :)
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    1. Carolyn
      Carolyn
      Thanks Virtually Homemade! Voted and thanks for posting the pumpkin face mask article just in time for fall pumpkin harvest!
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  8. Akanksha
    Akanksha
    Informative! #7
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    1. Carolyn
      Carolyn
      Thanks Akanksha for the vote!
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  9. Sheila Ray
    voted :)
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  10. pftsusan
    pftsusan
    #10. I like the idea that you can turn paper or cardboard into fertilizer to save the environment.
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  11. dianabart
    dianabart
    Great Blog.. Voted and shared! :-)
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