Surely you have ever heard of worm compost or vermicompost . It is a type of fertilizer that stands out for how cheap it is to make and because it provides very beneficial properties to any substrate. In fact, it is considered by many to be the best or one of the best natural fertilizers.
If you want to learn how to make your own worm humus , keep reading this article in which we tell you all about this natural product for your plants.
What is worm castings
As we have already said, worm humus is a natural organic and ecological fertilizer . Natural fertilizers do not have added chemical components, and can be used in organic orchards and plantations, providing a large number of benefits without having to resort to artificial compounds, which are also much more expensive.
The earthworm humus is nothing other than the organic matter of the earth that the worms have already digested, which returns to the decomposed earth, giving rise to a new composition that is very beneficial for the plants. However, it should be noted that humus itself is only produced on forest soils, thanks to the totally natural process that occurs in them, and what we can buy or produce at home is the organic matter itself produced by worms , which is already super benefits for plants.
The vermicompost has a spongy texture that greatly favors both the aeration of the earth, as well as its ability to retain water, although without causing flooding. In addition, thanks to the excrement of worms , humus is rich in many minerals that plants assimilate, such as nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus and magnesium.
Another of the main benefits of earthworm humus is its high load of microorganisms beneficial to plants , which protect them against the attack of harmful fungi and bacteria.
How to make worm castings
Although making worm castings is very cheap in the long run, initially you need to get hold of its legitimate producers: worms. The best thing for this is to buy Californian red worms , which are preferable for their great ability to devour organic matter and produce humus quickly, in addition to their high speed of reproduction.
It will also be necessary to prepare a vermicomposter, or compost for worms . There are many ways to prepare your own vermicomposter, but one of the cheapest and simplest is to use polystyrene or polystyrene boxes. They are simple boxes to obtain from many shops such as greengrocers or fishmongers. In addition, with this system you will produce both solid and liquid humus. You will need two boxes of similar size and with a lid.
How to make a vermicompostera and worm castings
- When you have the material indicated above, make holes in the lid and in the bottom of the upper box, to provide ventilation and perspiration to the container. It is enough with a common awl, something thicker than a worm.
- Then, in the lower tray, prepare a drain to be able to take advantage of the liquid component of the humus. At one of its lower ends, poke a hole the size of a plastic bottleneck, and then fit the trimmed neck itself so that it is as snug as possible. You can later seal the edges with glue or silicone to avoid losses.
- Once this is done, take advantage of the ass of that same bottle to nail it in the center of this same bottom tray. The function of this is to form an “island” for the worms that fall below.
- Once the compost is made, place it in a ventilated place and prepare a layer of peat in the upper tray, in which you will put the worms along with a few vegetable waste. From here, you just have to add vegetable residues to the earthworm, if possible cut or lightly crushed, and the worms will make the humus in a few weeks.
- In this way, the vegetable residues and the peat remain in the upper tray, and in the lower one the humus will fall, from which you can separate the liquid component thanks to the drain placed at the bottom. If you are wondering about the best way to make liquid worm castings, this is the simplest, making both the solid and the liquid at the same time.
As a final note, it is important to add crushed egg shells to the vermicompost , to prevent the humus from becoming too acidic. It is important not to let the mixture dry out excessively, adding some water if the humus becomes too dry.
How to use worm castings on plants
Applying worm castings is as simple as mixing the solid castings into the substrate before planting. If you want to apply as fertilizer to a plant already planted, you simply have to apply a thin layer directly on this land, or around it and raked if it is large fruit trees.
Regarding liquid humus , applying it is even easier, since it only has to be applied with a common irrigation, mixed with water. Follow the recommended doses of fertilization according to the type of plant you are strengthening, and enjoy the many benefits of this very complete organic and ecological fertilizer now that you have already started in vermiculture .