Saturday, May 21, 2005


So, absolutely yonks ago, for some unknown reason, I went along to garden centre to a seminar thingy about worm composting. I thought it kinda looked like fun, plus they have a scheme where worm bins are discounted for Alameda residents. So I ordered a worm bin. It arrived. It sat under the fussball table for months. Then it was winter and too cold to get worms. Then I moved house. Then one day I tried to buy some worms but the guy didn't have any available right then. If I remember correctly, he said: "Come back in March".

So then, one day in May (i.e., last weekend), I went and purchased a pound of worms. Red wrigglers, I believe they're called. Being the good little blogger I am, I took some photos.

Here is the worm bin. It has two more layers which the worms won't need for a while, so they're currently in my wardrobe storing wine. It will be a sad day when I have to drink all the wine just to let the worms have another layer.

The worm bin comes with a brick of coconut fibre, which you soak in warm water and it makes this wonderful mushy mush which the worms apparently adore.

Now the whole point in getting these worms is that they eat your rubbish. Mostly they eat fruit and vegetable scraps, but they also quite happily munch away on other assorted things including newspaper. Good little recyclers. So here is their first meal. Spinach stalks. Who's going to grow up to be a stwong widdle wormie then?

And here are the happy little worms when I first added them to the worm bin. There are apparently about 1000 worms in a pound, so I haven't named them all yet.

So far so good. Worms fed, watered, bedded down. You can't give them too much food at first, so I ignored them for a few days. Then on Monday night I lost my keys. I managed to get a spare for the house, but not for the garden gate. Tuesday it started raining, and I started worrying about my poor, starving, wet worms. On Wednesday I rang the neighbour, who is also the gardener, but she had just lost her key to the gate too. On Thursday I finally located a gate key, and feeling like a Very Bad Worm Mother indeed, I went to check on the worms.

They were perfectly happy.

So far their diet consists of spinach, asparagus, mushrooms, eggshells, teabags, melon rind and lots of coffee grinds. I'm trying to go easy on the coffee grinds. Do you think worms can get addicted to caffeine?