Worms Round III. This Time It’s Personal.

By | July 20, 2012 at 10:20 am | 2 comments

So it looks like I might not be cut out for life as a worm owner. After my first disastrous attempt where I manage to over feed them all and bury them in piles of molding food, I have now managed to drown the new batch in their own poo. It all sounds a bit like a Saw movie for worms.

When emptying the worm tea a few weeks back a sudden splutter and splatter of pale dead worms made me gasp and gag. My jar of liquid fertiliser now had about 20 deceased worms floating in it, and smelling pretty damn awful too.

I decided the best thing to do would be to ignore it. So for a few more days I carried on as normal, adding leftovers to the wormery and closing my mind to any thoughts of what was happening below my wilted salad leaves.

The next Saturday I decided to try again. Another jar of liquid and deceased worms sputtered out.

Groaning with despair (and disgust) I marched indoors to Google.

It turns out that any number of things could have gone wrong. So I turned to twitter.

The wonderful people at Worm City came to my rescue.

Cover the dividing mesh between the compost and liquid with an old pair of tights to stop the worms falling though the gap.

Great.

Except that means emptying all that mess out. A few more days of ‘maybe it will fix itself’ passed and then I decided to man up and address the issue.

Donning some rubber gloves I tipped and scrapped the wormery into a bucket. And it turns out it wasn’t actually as bad as I thought.

When the wormery was empty I was shocked to see how small the holes were that these pesky worms kept falling down. How were they managing it?

After 15 minutes of pulling, tugging and twisting to get the bottom layer up, I finally managed to prise it off with the aid of a butter knife. I braced myself for a pile of stinking dead worms.

Nothing.

Not a damn thing. All the worms had come out through the tap leaving not a single man behind. The bottom of the wormery was completely empty.

A bit relieved and a bit annoyed, I added the tights to the bottom layer and put it all back together. As I tipped the compost back in a noticed a single lone worm.

“You have a lot of eating and baby making to do” I tell him as I replaced the lid.

Back to Google to order more worms and skip to a month later, the worms are doing fine.

Skip another month and the buggers have all disappeared again.

*swears repeatedly at the wormless wormery*

Does anyone know what I’ve done wrong this time? Or is it just time to give up, turn it into a compost bin and leave the worms alone to live their lives in peace?

2 Comments

  1. Gloria (4 years ago)

    Some years ago I started a worm farm and despite it sounding really easy I befell many problems. A friend who lived nearby was also going through a similar problematic time and between us we became totally obsessed. This resulted in us travelling far and wide to visit gardens where we knew there would be worm farms including Wisley, where their worm farm wasn’t available the day we called by.
    Eventually I cracked it by adding more shredded paper to the material and once I lightened up and stopped stressing about it, everything seemed to work without a hitch.

  2. Jo Corrall (4 years ago)

    Thanks Gloria, I’ll try adding more shredded paper. And chilling out a bit! Check back in about a months time to see what next befalls my poor worms…

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