Vermiculture: Indoor Composting and Organic Soil Improvement

Maybe you’ve never heard the term vermiculture, if so don’t feel bad, many experienced gardeners are unfamiliar with this organic practice. I think vermiculture is fascinating; simply put it’s the process of composting kitchen waste with earthworms. We’re not talking about common night crawlers, but special varieties of worms such as red worms, and red wigglers.

Okay, I’ll admit to owning an ant farm when I was a kid, but this is so much more practical bear meat . Vermiculture, or vermicomposting as its also known is more like beekeeping; yes I’ve given that a try too. But just imagine for a second, you feed the worms your leftover garbage and kitchen scraps. The worms then quickly eat all those leftovers, sparing you the hassles of taking out the garbage.

And here’s the best part, while the composting worms are disposing of your garbage, they’re also producing a terrific organic fertilizer and soil conditioner called earthworm castings. Well, okay… the term earthworm casting is just a nice name for earthworm excrement. I don’t know who thought up the name earthworm castings, but I guess it makes sense if you think it through.

You may have seen worm castings for sale at your local garden center and didn’t realize what you were dealing with, but now you know. Don’t worry, earthworm castings are clean, odorless, and sterile… trust me on this one. You don’t need gloves or a shovel to handle them, and they are wonderful for improving your soil quality and for promoting the growth and health of all your plants.

So you can purchase bags of earthworm castings to use around the garden or if you’re a little more adventurous you can set up an “earthworm farm” and produce your own. The farm is actually just a worm bin that can be set up indoors or outdoors depending on the climate.

Vermicomposting isn’t complicated, but the worms are living creatures, and have certain requirements. For example they don’t tolerate extremely hot living conditions, and they also won’t survive freezing. The worms are pretty healthy eaters, so while eggshells are fine, don’t try slipping any meat, fats, or greasy foods into their diet.

In the beginning, God created the Heavens and Earth. He created the seas, dry land, plants on the land, the beasts of the ocean and beasts of the earth. Then, He created man and woman. If you do not believe that, look it up, it is straight out of Genesis. Anyway, God’s creation is a wonderful thing. We were made in His likeness and for His glory. How often do we take that fact for granted? How often do we not realize that the simple pleasures in life were created and placed in our lives to glorify God? Think about it. Everything you see is somehow linked the creative process of our God. Everything we hear is a product of God’s wonderful creative hand. Everything we touch can somehow be traced to the Creator of the universe. If we can not understand that, we are missing a significant part of the master plan for creation.

Too often in life we coast along or fly along at warp speed and do not take time to think about creation and just sit back and enjoy creation. We are moving through life with blinders on trying to complete our own agenda without regard to others and without much regard to God and His magnificent creation. Undoubtedly, we are usually thinking of what is the next thing we need to accomplish and how can we benefit from it. Do not misunderstand me, I know that many people have an agenda to change the world for the better. I applaud people who can strictly adhere to that type of agenda. I dare say that no one is able to never deviate from a unselfish agenda and from time to time even the Billy Grahams and Mother Theresas of the world have been imperfect in what their sights are set on accomplishing. It’s o.k. We are not perfect. All we can do is strive to be the best we can be and to glorify God through what we do. Oh, and by the way, one of the rewards for living that kind of life is to have His creation to enjoy here on earth.

Children understand this on a completely different level that adults understand this. Have you ever seen a child admiring the beauty of butterfly? They are enthralled by its beauty and grace. Have you ever seen a child hold a dandelion and rave about how pretty it is? As adults we want to set that child straight and tell them that a dandelion is nothing more than a weed. Chances are that child will argue that we are wrong and it is a beautiful flower and if you pick enough of them, you will have the most beautiful bouquet of flowers. You know what? That child is right.

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