In my experiences with vermicompost, I have found out that one effective way of creating organic matter for plants is through vermicomposting. I have created my own vermicompost formula and it works. You can create one too that is effective for your plants.
Many people frequently preach about why composting is important. The spiel goes something like this: it saves sending our organic waste to landfill, which results in less greenhouse gases and less pollution on the planet. This alone is an excellent reason to compost. But the product this process results in, the vermicompost itself, is also a hero in this story.
And it provides you with a second excellent reason to get composting. This blog explains just how valuable vermicompost is for our soil and plants and gives us a better understanding of how composting turns our trash into something we can truly treasure.
Vermicompost is largely comprised of actual sh!t. The worms eat the trash, the worms digest the trash, and the compost is what remains after they have pooed it out. It’s the age-old story of digestion. But to end the story there would be to seriously betray the complexity of vermicompost and the rich diversity of microbial life it contains.
In reality, vermicomposting is actually the jewel in gardening’s crown. But if it’s just sh!t, why is vermicompost so sh!t hot? Let’s break this poop down.
Worm Castings (to refrain from the toilet talk for a moment and give it a respectable title) contain a long list of minerals beneficial to plant growth. Here are a few to give you an idea: borax, calcium, carbon, cobalt, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, nitrates, phosphorus, potassium and zinc. Castings also contain a highly active biological mixture of bacteria and enzymes.
Vermicompost is also made up of high level of humus, the organic matter that hasn’t actually been through the worm but forms when plants and animals undergo the process of decay. Humus consists of a whole heap of useful nutrients, including the Casanovas of your garden soil, nitrogen and humic acid (see below for full details of their charms in the garden).
All of these elements are excellent at increasing the microbial activity in our soil and ultimately improving its quality. And the better our soil, the more productive our veggie patches will be. Which is exactly what we want.
The following list gives you some idea of what vermicompost is doing for your gardens. It’s not exhaustive, but it’s enough to demonstrate what a true treasure your vermicompost can be for your soil and for the quality of your home grown veggies.
Test the valuable properties of vermicomposting next time you plant seeds by preparing half your punnets with vermicompost and half without.
And be sure to use your vermicompost wisely. You can (and I often do) simply throw your vermicompost onto your garden as a means of top dressing the soil mid-season. This is great, but if you have a limited supply and need to use it sparingly by sprinkling it into your seed rows or adding a handful to the bottom of each hole you dig for your plants. You will get maximum value from your vermicompost this way!
Hannah is a passionate lover of plants and has a firm belief that even the darkest corners of the concrete jungle can be greenified. Her penchant for composting and bad plant puns led to the creation of the The Worm Monger, a website that allows her to thoroughly indulge all these passions.
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