Sunday, February 22, 2015

2,000 New Friends come a knockin' at my door!

They're here! 

2,000 of my new best friends have arrived USPS Priority Mail and I couldn't be happier!

Now before I introduce you let's back up a few weeks when I decided to jump on the homesteading wagon. Keep in mind I'm basically starting from scratch out here in suburbia so I'm reading everything I can get my hands on and one thing that kept coming up in my reading was composting.

So with a few tips from gardening book and YouTube videos I figured if I was gonna do this right and help amend this Oklahoma red dirt that's harder than a brick, I'd need a little help. OK, change that to a lot of help! new best friends. Red Wiggler Worms!

In my research I learned Red Wigglers were the best for composting.  Frankly they seem a bit like slithering little vampires...they don't like light, and are blood  veggie thirsty critters with voracious appetites and the weirdly cool thing about them is that what they excrete is pure gold for us gardeners. Sounds gross I know, but when you live with 2 teenage sons, nothing grosses you out, least of all worm poo.

Now I'm all for organic, no pesticides and adding as much back into the garden as possible the all natural way. And since I'm not the squeamish sort and thought those little dudes were rather cool considering all they'd be doing to help a new gardener like myself out, I knew I had to have me some new friends.

About the same time I started saving all of my food scraps. No meat. No grease. No Cheetos, just good old fruit and veggie scraps. Oh! And I learned those little stickers you get on your know the ones, well, worms don't like those, so they hit the trashcan. But all the yummy food that worms like to eat, got tossed into my temporary worm bin.

To set up my worm bin, I took an old clear shallow plastic bin (24x15x5) threw it into a big black yard waste trash bag, layered it with damp torn newspaper shreds, about a half gallon of organic soil and then started adding food scraps to the bin.

Now I've read that worms like when food starts to rot. Something to do with bacteria and all that jazz. So I started this food bin about a week before the worms actually arrived in order to get the decomposition going. I made sure everything was slightly damp, not soaking wet and then popped the lid on, put it in the garage to percolate a bit.

With the compost cooking I needed worms. 

I hit my local nurseries first but who knew no one carried worms in the winter. What? Worms go on vacation? They diet in the winter? I don't get it! Not a single worm to be had. That's ridiculous! A worm's gotta eat! And I've got garbage to feed them...why can't I buy worms in the winter? That's just weird.

Oh well, back to square one. The 'net.

Within minutes I found my worm source. Uncle Jim's Worm Farm.

Now here's the cool thing. Apparently there are sales on worms in the winter. Yep. And there are discount codes for additional money off. Love that!  So I placed my order and a few days later, shipped Priority Mail, my vampire Red Wiggler worms showed up in a peat packed breathable bag.

 I followed the directions just as Uncle Jim suggested and got the worms transferred to their new home with nary a problem. And so far it would seem that everyone is happy!

I want to encourage everyone to start a worm bin.  If you want compost that is pure heaven's nectar for your veggies and flowers, get a bin, save your scraps and order your own set of vampires! Your plants will love you! And frankly these little dudes are so cool to watch.

Until next time,

Happy Gardening,


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