Under What Conditions Do Redworms T-H-R-I-V-E?
Print this page for a handy reference.

T - Temperature

  • Optimum is between 68° - 77°F
  • At 40° F the worms are less active.
  • Worms become stressed at 85° F.

Feeding too much can cause bin to heat up and kill worms or cause them to escape!

H - H20 (Moisture)

  • Optimum is between 75%-85% moisture.
  • Bedding should have the same moisture as a wrung out sponge.
  • Squeeze a handful of bedding, 1 or 2 drops should be released.
  • Drainage is extremely important in any vermicomposting system.

R - Recycle Organic Material Only

Anything that was once alive and is now dead:

  • Fruits
  • Cereals
  • Pastas
  • Egg shells
  • Coffee & Filters
  • Tea bags
  • Paper or cardboard - shredded
  • Limited citrus
  • Beans
  • Breads
  • Aged manures
  • Vegetables
  • No dairy, fish or meat products. Worms will eat it but these items can smell bad and attract pests.
  • Oily or salty foods can harm worms.
  • Recycle pet waste in a separate system.
  • Add more food only when you see that the worms are completely involved in the food that is already there.
  • For Indoor Composting – To help limit pests such as fruit flies, freeze or cook waste prior to feeding to worms.

Add more food only when you see that the worms are completely involved in the food that is already there.

Feed in layers no thicker than 1 inch to avoid heating up the bin and baking your worms.
DO NOT OVERFEED!!

I - Invertebrates and Microbes Found in a Healthy System

Beneficial creatures that are harmless to you, your worms, and your plants:
Invertebrates and Microorganisms to avoid:

V - Ventilation

  • All the creatures in the system need AIR and lots of it!

E - Environment

  • pH 5.5 is preferred.
  • Worms tolerate a range from pH 4 to pH 9.
  • The worms are sensitive to light so keep it dark.
  • Good bedding can be any combination of aged manures, shredded paper products, coir (coconut fiber), decomposing leaves, straw, wood chips, peat moss, a handful of soil to seed bin with microorganisms, etc.
  • Worms can eat about 3 times their weight a week.
  • Redworms mature in 8 weeks & double in biomass every 3-4 months under ideal conditions
  • 1 mature worm could produce 96 worms in 6 months (2 cocoons x 24 weeks x 2 hatchlings)

 

© 2008 Happy D Ranch

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