VitalityHerbsAndClay.com

Vitality Herbs and Clay Vital Health News Archives Dynamic Gardening Part 4 – Worm Castings
Tuesday, 03 May 2011 00:00

Dynamic Gardening Part 4 – Worm Castings

Worm Castings & Red Wrigglers – Your Garden's Best Friends


by Michael King

Web Audio: There was no audio call this week.

Question: Once you get the garden soil layered & prepared, do you purchase worms to get a good start of them to begin with, or do they just appear from the surrounding soil to enrich your vegetable garden?

 

2 years ago, I purchased several hundred dollars' worth of worm castings with worm eggs in them to place in my garden and compost piles just to speed my soil improvement process along since the soil was brand new and needed a bit of worm help. What I have learned since may help you decide how to go about this yourself.

 

I am quite passionate about my worms :) since they are such a central key to successful gardening. There are several ways to go about growing a worm supply for your garden depending on how much time you have to get started.

 

We now have worm castings loaded with live worms and worm eggs for  (Vitality Worm Castings & Red Wrigglers 2 lbs.) It is extremely rich from a microbial and mineral perspective. It is a new product provided due to several recent calls from clients wanting to use worms to enrich their garden soil and improve the health of their plants.

 

Worms multiply fairly rapidly if fed properly and taken care of. A worm cultivation spot, as a hole in the ground, is one of the most ideal ways to cultivate worms. It is best if it is in the shade and under a tree or bush (where many worms already reside around their roots), but if covered with lots of straw or hay and/or soil they can be cultivated in the middle of your garden itself. This is ideal since this is where you want them to live eventually anyway.

 

I used the pathways of my garden and simply buried my kitchen scraps along with some additional worms/castings from my former worm cultivating spots/bins and some leaves, garden cuttings, straw, alfalfa, gravel, twigs, etc. in holes in the isle ways and covered them with a few inches of soil and pathway bark.

 

The next garden compost hole was made close to the first one and I kept adding the new holes so that the worms from the former scraps would migrate over to the new scraps when the first was finished. Many of the worms would find their way to the roots of my garden plants from these underground holes bringing nutrition and friendly bacteria with them.

 

This process is also a great way to prepare a new garden bed during the season prior to actually planting in that bed.

 

Starting a Worm Cultivation Bin

It is possible to start a worm cultivation bin with specific scraps of food that worms love and which will draw the red wrigglers from your neighbors all around. As they multiply from your food, they will spread back out and eventually (over the span of a few years) spread into all of your neighbors yards again, improving the quality of their soil and plants.

 

They go where the food is that they like. Worms love melons, fruit, raw eggs, avocados, fish and other sea creatures, leaves, seaweed, dried grass, raw milk or whey, nettles, powdered herbs and SumaRaj tea grounds (the adaptogenic herbs in the tea makes them multiply rapidly).

The Layering Process

Layer an inch or two of scraps with an inch or so of garden soil as you build up a worm cultivation hole or bin. This layering process increases the microbial and mineral presence in the final soil product. It also speeds the decomposition of foodstuffs the worms are consuming. Another advantage to layering with soil is that the top layer of soil prevent gnats and odors from developing.

 

I like to place gravel or lava rock and small tree branches or fruit tree cuttings into the bottom of my worm cultivation hole or bin. Worms love to hang out around gravel and wood. They require clay minerals like the Silica Rich and Liquid Gold and biological additives like Bio-Build or raw milk whey to proliferate rapidly.

 

The twigs are there more for the fungi which feed off of the carbonaceous woody fiber. This adds a beneficial component to the soil in significant ways. Fungi improve root growth and overall plant health.

 

By layering your garden bed first with gravel or rock, then with twigs and branches, then with a layer of seaweeds, fruit and other forms of worm food, then a single pocket of the worms (from the bottom of the 2 lb. bag), followed by your upper soil composition, the worms will multiply throughout the year and provide a source of nourishment to the roots of your plants.

 

The sharpness of the rock is also not a problem for the worms. Once the soil is in place the rocks will not be moving and the worms love to tunnel between the rocks in the cavities provided by the uneven edges. They add beneficial bacteria to the rock surfaces which in turn assist in breaking down small amounts of the rock surface. The minerals derived from this process result in bioavailable minerals for your plants.

 

Acid or Alkaline Environments

Worms work in both acid and alkaline environments. Their job is to balance the soil medium to the unique needs of a plant's roots, so in some cases this will mean creating an acidic environment for a certain plant like blueberries which require such. They know how to use the decomposing material to the benefit of the plants above.

 

A combination of deciduous leaves and evergreen needles work well in a compost bin. The tree leaves to avoid will be the walnut having known anti-parasite properties, though with time, soil bacteria will break down even these.

 

Citrus Peels

Best to leave citrus peels out of a fresh worm pile due to the essential oils. Citrus peels can be buried alone in an area for a few weeks until the bacteria and fungus have broken them down a bit, and then integrated at a later date. In a super microbial-rich worm bin that will not present a significant issue, especially if sufficient soil is layered in between the food stock.

 

Worms and fungi transport minerals and other nutrients across surprising distances to feed the needs of the nearby plants. Worms can travel 3-12 feet in any direction and fungi mycelia web structures can stretch for miles.

 

If You Have Enough Time You Can Grow Your Own

My own compost/worm castings have been grown in this manner, so they make an excellent inoculant for a new worm bin or garden bed of both friendly bacteria and worms. You can also grow your own if desired and if you have enough time to wait the 3-6 months for them to multiply to sufficient quantities for your purposes. Just bury as many of the food stock/compost mentioned in a damp hole in the ground that is placed in the shade near a bush or tree and cover with straw and dirt. Keep at an average level of moisture, neither dry nor soaked.

 

Let the worms mature the compost for 1-3 months as you feed the growing colonies with additional food from time to time and you will have an excellent worm nest. It takes about 3 months or less for the worms to double. As long as they have food and moisture they will continue to multiply.

 

When you are ready to harvest the worm castings for your garden dig a hole next to the first hole and the worms will move to the fresh food. Then you can spread the worm castings from the first hole over your garden, onto your potted plants, or use it in a compost tea for a foliar spray. The now empty first hole will contain a rich biological inoculate (and a number of starter worms) for fresh compost to begin a new worm cultivator spot. If you leave some of the composted soil at the bottom the worms will live there until the new food is sufficiently decomposed by the bacteria for them to be enticed to go up into the food to do their job.

 

Bacteria, Nutrients and Humus Matter in the Soil

The worms provide the biology (friendly bacteria) needed by the soil and plants. They also balance the nutrient levels in the soil to match the needs of each plant. Your garden soil around your plants requires soft humus matter within the soil fabric itself for worms to survive there in any great amount. This is done with leaves, garden clippings and dried grass on top of, or mixed in with, the soil during the winter especially, or any time of year if necessary. This becomes a constant supply of food and friendly bacteria for the worms that will be hanging out around the roots of your plants.

 

Worm Colonies or Nests

If you decide to plant colonies of worms in different spots around your garden it is best to dig a small hole a few inches deep, say 6-12 inches, and fill with almost finished worm bin material loaded with worms still feasting on the mostly decomposed scraps. This approach is preferable to spreading a thin layer of composted material across the garden if the goal is to cultivate mature worms within the garden near your plant roots.

 

Worms do not like for their biological habitat to undergo radical changes in pH or bacterial composition as it will often result in the disappearance of the mature colonies, leaving only the eggs to hatch in the new environment with an adapted biological constitution to match the new environment.

 

If, on the other hand, you merely want to inoculate the garden with mineral and bacteria nutrition for your plants and soil, and not attempt to cultivate a worm nest, then spreading or sprinkling a thin layer of worm castings across the garden soil will do wonders for the health and life of your garden.

 

Application Rate

I would suggest 2 lbs. of Vitality Worm Casting & Red Wrigglers will be sufficient for sprinkle a small amount over the surface of 50-100 square feet of garden bed, apply weekly biological spray applications to both your garden and your house plants for an entire growing season in addition to sufficient stock of live worms and eggs to quick start a garden bed or compost bin.

 

Application rate for foliar spray is 1-3 teaspoons of worm castings for 10 gallons of water. Application rate for soil spray inoculant is 1-3 teaspoons of worm castings for 5 gallons of water or compost tea. Depending on how much of the castings are sprinkled on the surface you may have close to 25-50 spray applications.

 

The live worms are on the bottom of the 2 lb. bag covered by pure worm castings and bioactive soil to serve an inoculant for your soil and plants. The worms will be placed in your garden bed with worm food goodies. The fine worm castings on top can be poured off and saved in a dry, shady location until ready for use.

 

In combination with Silica Rich and Liquid Gold you should see dynamic results in your new garden bed this year.

 


All the best of health and success,

Enjoy the goodness of Nature.

 

 

Subscribe to Vital Health News

Sign up for Vital Health News Email Updates and receive a free copy of the Detox, Nourish & Build - 3 Essentials for Vibrant Health (80+ pages of natural, common sense advice with recipes - $25 value)
Learn more about Vital Health News

* Email
First Name
Last Name
How did you hear about us?
* = Required Field
Your privacy is very important to us.

Storewide 10%+ Off Special

Extended Storewide

10%-30% Off
(based on order volume)

as an additional
10% on top of normal
Volume Discounts

(This Special applies
to Retail Sales only)

-------  --  -------

We offer a big "thank you!"
to all of our Retail Clients
for your part
in helping us grow!

-------  --  -------

10% - 30% off
ALL sizes of ALL
Vitality Herbs & Clay products
(based on order volume)

from July 12th through

Tuesday, August 5th
6PM PDT
(9PM EDT)

-------  --  -------

Order Volume Discounts
through August 5th only:

$1-$299.99 - was 0%, now 10%
$300+ - was 5%, now 15%
$500+ - was 10%, now 20%
$1,000+ - was 15%, now 25%
$2,000+ was 20%, now 30%

NEW - - FREE SHIPPING on all
US orders of $250+
(International orders pay shipping)

Order online or leave a msg.
Office hours are
9-5 M-F Pacific Time.
541-482-9633; 888-325-1475

-------  --  -------

Articles of Interest

Adrenal Fatigue Behind
Sleepless Nights, Allergies
and Hormonal Imbalance

An Effective Adrenal
Repair & Rebuild Program

-------  --  -------

30 Day High Level
Foundational Program

-------  --  -------

Herbs and Clays for Energy
The Most Important Formulas
for Restoring Depleted Energy
from Life Stress, Diet
and Physical Injury

-------  --  -------

Candida - What Causes It
and How to Manage It

A Few Suprising Facts about the
Most Rampant Health Condition
on the Planet!

-------  --  ------

Radiation Detox Recommendations

Clay Comparisons

What are the Differences
Between the Most Popular Clays
Available Today?

---------

Radiation Detox Program

Suggested 1 Month Amounts

Sacred Clay 2 lbs./mo.
(2 tbsp. or 24 caps./day)
Sacred Clay 8 lbs./mo.
(32 baths at 1/2 cup each)

Earth & Sea Greens 1 lb./mo.
(2 tbsp. or 24 caps./day)
Thyroid Balance 4 oz./mo.
(2 tsp. or 8 caps./day)
(or twice as much if not taking
Earth & Sea Greens)
---------

Related Articles

Nature's Most Powerful Protections
from Radiation Exposure

The Effectiveness of
Whole Earthen Resources
and the Dangers of Iodine Therapy

---------------------------------------

Whole Earthen
Radiation Detox Program

Straight from Nature – A Comprehensive
Approach Toward Radiation Protection

(Detox Program Description)

---------------------------------------

How to Protect Your
Water, Food and Garden
from Radiation Exposure

Simple, Powerful Measures Drawn
from the Resources of Nature

 ---------------------------------------

OK, So What Foods CAN I Eat?

Food Combining Rules &
Foods You Can Eat
With Some Discretion

 

 

Share This!

Shopping Cart

Your Cart is currently empty.

Positve SSL on a transparent background

Disclaimer

The truth is, not a single product, natural or otherwise (including every one mentioned on this site) is capable of healing the human body. Neither an herb, a clay, a vitamin or mineral supplement, a seaweed or algae, an organic food, nor any other substance is capable of healing the body. In every instance the body will take the nutrition given it, break it down into millions of pieces, combine it with other components already available within the body to make new compounds, then deliver those newly formed metabolic compounds to the places that it knows it needs to go - all according to its own wisdom! In this manner the body creates its own medicines, which are nothing more than its normal complement of amino acids, proteins, enzymes, hormones and a vast number of other natural chemical processes.

Our job is not to target diseases or micromanage specific chemical reactions or hormone levels. Our job is simply to nourish the body with a complete spectrum of the kinds of foods that it will recognize as "real food". Real food is that which is compatible with the organic nature of the body's original construction. The human body is a natural organism. It was created from the "dust (or clay) of the earth". Therefore, the perfect food for the body will also be of earthen origin - unaltered. Earthen resources that qualify as real food include such things as clay, water, algae, seaweeds, herbs, fruits, nuts, seeds, and vegetables. Anything less than whole would not be a "real food". This includes "natural" vitamin and mineral supplements assembled by a laboratory rather than by Nature.

Our job is not to try to improve on Nature with our so-called "science", our job is merely to provide the body with an abundance of real food and let the body decide what to do with it. Earthen resources contain a vast array of nutrient-based building blocks for the body to select from in order to construct its own medicine. It is also our job not to toxify the body with foods that are not real or compatible with the body, and to detoxify all that is foreign and poisonous. In this manner, the body will have the greatest freedom to select from the vast array of resources that we provide in order to simply clean house and build life-giving strength. Again, this entire process is performed, not by our manipulation of chemical reactions, but through our support of the body's own inherent wisdom.

Go to full Disclaimer