How to set up your worm farm and take care of your worms

Let the worms do the hard work for you. Invest in a worm farm today.

Did you know that approximately half of all household waste is organic.

Some good reasons why you should have a worm farm: 

  • they turn waste material into a rich soil supplement for the garden
  • this rich supplement is one of the best soil conditioners
  • worms process waste food really quickly
  • worm tea (wee) can be diluted and used as a liquid fertiliser all year round on any garden
  • it is convenient, cheap and easy
  • quality and quantity of your fruit, vegetables and flowers treated with worm material will be exceptional.

Your humble worms will also be helping you play a small part in combating global warming. How? Worms eat what would go to land fill, so they help you reduce the amount of waste you send to land fill and cut down contamination and greenhouse gases.

Easy steps to start your worm farm

  1. Buy a worm farm from you local hardware store or council office.
  2. Make the ‘bedding’ of torn up cardboard, strips of newspaper, straw or leaves.
  3. Add the worms. You can buy them from supplier.
  4. Add food waste (not too much, especially initially).
  5. Cover the worm bed. Sprinkle with lime every couple of weeks to avoid acid build up.
  6. Harvest the castings every few months.

Do feed your worms – yum yum!

  • • fruit (except citrus)
  • • vegetables (except onions)
  • • coffee grounds and paper filters
  • • tea bags
  • • crushed egg shells
  • • leaves
  • • shredded paper.

Do not feed your worms – yech!

  • oily food
  • meat
  • poultry
  • fish
  • dairy
  • vinegar / salad dressings
  • onions and lemons.

Feeding your worms is a once a week bonding time. You gather the worm “tea” and magic castings for your garden and you flush the worm farm with one bucket of clean water. Add finely chopped kitchen waste and honour these wriggling hard working creatures with some gourmet food .

Gourmet Food Recipe for your worms

  • 5 cups laying chicken pellets
  • 1 cup corn flour
  • 1 cup powdered milk
  • 2 cups bran
  • 1 cup lime

Mix all ingredients together and sprinkle one to two cups once a week on top of the cut up kitchen scraps.

How to use worm castings

  • Harvest from the lowest tray as the worms rise up in the farm to the feeding tray at the top.
  • Place one handful in the planting hole you dig for each new plant.
  • Add to your soil mix when preparing new beds.
  • Place as a layer in a raised bed.
  • Place a handful of castings around established plants in spring. Always cover with mulch.
  • As plants are coming into flower, thank them with a handful of castings to encourage more abundant blooms.
  • For ease of application to larger areas, you can dilute the castings and water onto the soil and around fruit trees.

How to use worm tea

This fabulous tea-coloured liquid is nutritious for the garden (not humans) at any time but especially when vegetables are young,  plants are flowering and fruit is ripening.

  • Dilute 10 parts water to one part worm tea and use as general tonic for entire garden. For best results aerate the tea before use
  • Always use fresh that day as it can become anaerobic. (You will know as it starts to smell bad.)
  • Water on stressed and diseased plants.
  • Use on flowering plants and when fruit is setting.
  • Water on seedlings after two to three weeks.

To help you started in your organic garden download Low Budget Organic Gardening Ebook

“Let the worms to the hard work for you. I have said many times I am a lazy gardener –  I get a little help from my friends!”