You must be thinking, “seriously?” “But why?” Well, your way of thinking isn’t wrong as we fight a lot in our daily life with the diseases caused by them. Naturally, it creates a negative impact on our thinking. But all the worms don’t cause harm to us. Yeah, you heard it right. Moreover, many of them are necessary for our lives. Let us take a look at how to take care of worms.
Why we need them
Worms being eco-friendly, have multiple fields of its’ uses. Let me mention some of them.
Vermicompost is the ultimate product that we got in the decomposition process caused by worms. The process is called vermicomposting. This product is a nutrient-rich fertilizer that helps to improve the growth and structure of plants.
Plants need a flow of air to their roots & this air needs passage. How is this path created? Does air create its way? The answer is, “No” The movement of worms creates tiny holes or passages in the soil, and thus the air circulation takes place.
We bait the fish with worms which we buy from the shops. If fishing is your passion or way of refreshment, then the cost of purchasing the worms will not matter a lot to you. But if you are professional and earn your livelihood through fishing, then it will matter. In that case, keeping worms yourself will bring you quite fortune.
Are you surprised by the term? Yes, you can make money by keeping worms in a large scale and selling them to local stores of fish bait. On the other hand, keeping them yourself and taking care of them will not cost you much.
Adults will not like to have worms as a pet unless it brings any benefit. But some children do like it. To keep them as pet care is a must.
Worms maintain the ecosystem by turning a waste product into soil nutrients.
Worms for Vermicomposting
Worm farms produce red worms, red wigglers, tiger worms, manure worms the most.
Ways to take care of worms
- Inspect your worms
- Control the temperature-It shouldn’t be too hot or too cold (freezing temperature). (50-70)⁰F is the ideal temperature. It shouldn’t cross 60⁰C
- If you just had bought them, then transfer them from the shipped bag into your compost bin or container that has adequate bedding. Or else, the worms will dry out as the shipped bags are breathable bags for short time storage
- Ensure the right moisture of bedding-Worms breathe through skins & it’s the mucus on their skin that allows the exchange of gasses. In a dry condition, the slime will dry out. Damp soil has the right moisture for worms. You can check it by squeezing peat moss. The proper humidity of land will give squishy sound
- Allow smooth airflow. For this, turn the beddings once or twice a week
- For too dry soil, spray Chlorine-free water lightly
- Get a piece of knowledge about their food list. Worms aren’t keen on cooked food, meat, fats, etc
Things to avoid
Direct sun-Worms like to live in a dark place. Direct sun exposure will cause them sunburns dryness & they may even die
Torching-Avoid it. Worms aren’t comfortable with it
Soaking wet condition-Although they grow in moist soil, it shouldn’t be soaking wet. Worms are unable to breathe being submerged in water
Food list-Worms are not keen in meat, citrus, onions, and dairy foods
What to Feed them?
- Fruits and vegetables like banana, apples, eggplant, kales, tomatoes, berries, etc.
- Worms like to eat eggshells and coffee ground.
- Cut leaves, grass, sawdust, paper into pieces, and thus form organic bedding.
- Cornmeal keeps worms healthy.
What not to Feed them?
Meat scraps, bones, fat, grease, acidic food like melons, oranges, dairy products, cooked food, a large quantity of garden waste like lawn clippings.
What makes them happy?
Fresh manure of horse or rabbit keeps worms comfortable. You can sprinkle them little on top of the bedding.
Prepare the bedding (Long term storage):
If you want to keep them and raise more, then worms bedding is needed. Steps to prepare the bedding for worms:
- Buy an opaque container of 20-gallon storage or a ready-made worm bin.
- The container should have at least 20 holes. Five holes in lid and bottom. Three holes on each side of the bin.
- Keep the bin on two blocks and place plastic under it.
- Use newspaper to shred up and spread on bedding.
- Soak bedding.
- Fill the bin or the container with bedding, spread it around, and fluff it up.
- Sprinkle some dirt & put a layer of food scraps on top.
- After closing the lid, wait three days to a maximum of two weeks for the food to decompose and then add worms.
Short term storage
For short-term storage, keep them in their cups and maintain a cold temperature. They will be able to survive 2-4 weeks.
At the end
Hope you all can get out of negative thought about worms and get knowledge about how to take care of worms. Give it a try and enjoy its benefits.