Composting is a great option to reduce environmental impact and prepare a natural and beneficial soil additive. But, many of you may not have sufficient outdoor space at home for a traditional compost heap.
Here, Vermicompost is an excellent option that allows for an indoor composting operation in less space. All you need to do is create a worm bin and throw all your food scraps for the worms to feed off & make rich soil.
Method to make vermicompost at home
Vermicomposting - Stage I : Set up Worm Bin
Step 1 - Select a spot in your home to keep the worm bin.
The best places for worm bins keep a consistent temperature & moisture level. So you must not place it near an oven, heater, air conditioner or vent. Though worm bins generally don’t produce much smell, still keep it away from the living areas of your house.
Store the worm bin in a laundry room, closet or other storage room. For those with large kitchen can place the bin there so as to easily throw food in it.
Step 2- Buy a worm bin
Worm bins are actually pre-made vermicompost containers. It is available at several gardening or organic supply stores. If you don’t want to purchase a worm bin then get a 20 gallon storage container. Make sure it’s opaque so that light does not get in.
Step 3- Drill holes in the bin for air flow
In pre-made worm bin there will be air holes but if you purchase a storage container then you will have to use a power drill to cut ½ inch holes in the bottom, sides & lid of the bin. Drill around 20 holes in the bin.
Step 4 - Place the bin on blocks with plastic under it
Get two blocks or, two wood pieces or something else that can keep the bin off the ground. Lay out a big sheet of plastic in the area of the house where you want the worm bin. Now put the blocks/woods on the plastic & put the bin on blocks.
Step 5 - Buy worms online or from a garden store
The most important step is to buy worms. You may buy it from nearby garden store or they are also available online.
Vermicomposting - Stage II : Make Worm Habitat
Step 1 - Cut newspaper or corrugated cardboard for bedding
Worms need bedding that holds moisture well, so newspaper & cardboard are best. Shred enough newspaper or cardboard to fill the bin about 8 inches high.
Step 2 - Soak bedding with water
Worms will need moisture to live as well as breath, so it’s important for the bedding to be damp before you add the worms into it. Sprinkle or pour little water on the bedding. Make sure that all of the bedding is wet.
Step 3 - Place the bedding into bin
When water gets properly soaked in the bedding, spread it evenly across the base of the bin. The bedding must fill at least the bottom 8 inches or so of the bin, so that there is sufficient room for the worms to settle in.
Step 4 – Pour some dirt on top of the bedding
As the worms naturally live in soil, they will feel more like home in your bin if you put some soil in it. Take some debris-free soil from outside, or buy some regular potting soil from the garden store. Then spread it properly across the bedding.
Step 5 - Put an even layer of food waste on top of soil
Spread the food scraps or waste all across the soil. The best food scraps that you can use are leaves, peels, rinds, cores & seeds from fruits & vegetables. Also go for crushed eggshells, tea bags & coffee grounds.
Step 6 - Close the lid & wait for two weeks
Now close the lip of the bin properly for at least 5 to 10 days.
Step 1 - Place worms into the bedding
Open the cover of the worm bin and make a hole in the middle of the bedding. Put the worms slowly into this hole, rather than across the top. The worms will feel more comfortable this way.
Step 2- Add about 225 g of food every day for each 1000 worms
If your family makes more waste then you can add more worms into the bin.
Check the bin every week to see how much bedding is left. When all the bedding gets converted into compost then you must understand that it’s harvest time. So push it all to one side an add new wet bedding. Slowly dig out the compost but leave the worms in the bin.
Congratulations you have prepared a great vermicompost at home!!
Source : krishijagran