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Worm Bins - Page 2

post #21 of 34
ex-stasis---I love that drawer idea! Any chance you have pictures of your setup? Do you have worms in all of the drawers or how does that work? Thanks!
post #22 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by northwoods1995 View Post
ex-stasis---I love that drawer idea! Any chance you have pictures of your setup? Do you have worms in all of the drawers or how does that work? Thanks!
I don't have any pictures; sorry! It really just looks like the drawers I linked to, except the clear part is dark green. I kept the opaque white parts white.

For a long time I only had worms in one drawer because I didn't have a lot of worms. But I guess they were happy enough in there to make worm babies and I just recently transferred half to the other drawer (my drawer set up is 3 drawers, so I have 2 drawers with worms and one for catching liquid). My plan from now on is just to alternate feedings between drawers so hopefully the worms can keep up with the scraps I give them. As it is, we produce way more kitchen scraps than the worms can eat, but the two drawer system is good because I can give them a little bit more this way.
post #23 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ex-stasis View Post
I don't have any pictures; sorry! It really just looks like the drawers I linked to, except the clear part is dark green. I kept the opaque white parts white.

For a long time I only had worms in one drawer because I didn't have a lot of worms. But I guess they were happy enough in there to make worm babies and I just recently transferred half to the other drawer (my drawer set up is 3 drawers, so I have 2 drawers with worms and one for catching liquid). My plan from now on is just to alternate feedings between drawers so hopefully the worms can keep up with the scraps I give them. As it is, we produce way more kitchen scraps than the worms can eat, but the two drawer system is good because I can give them a little bit more this way.
Sounds like you've invented a cool bin! Do you have trouble with smashing your worms when you slide out a drawer or do they not crawl through your drainage holes?

(I have thousands of worms, but still get sad if I smash one or miss it when separating them from the compost.)
post #24 of 34
OP--I hope you don't mind if I ask another worm question in your thread. For some reason I can't post a new message anywhere on MDC...

How normal is it for a few worms to escape a new bin? I'm not sure if there is something wrong with my bin? We've found probably 4 completely outside of the bin and every day I find a couple up right near the top in the handle grooves. (I'm using a rubbermaid tote). I'm not sure if that is normal or if there is something I need to adjust?
post #25 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by northwoods1995 View Post
OP--I hope you don't mind if I ask another worm question in your thread. For some reason I can't post a new message anywhere on MDC...

How normal is it for a few worms to escape a new bin? I'm not sure if there is something wrong with my bin? We've found probably 4 completely outside of the bin and every day I find a couple up right near the top in the handle grooves. (I'm using a rubbermaid tote). I'm not sure if that is normal or if there is something I need to adjust?
That's kind of something I was referencing in my question. My worms are everywhere. They move up in their condo, which is why you're supposed to start feeding them in the bottom tray then move to the next one up when it's full. When I first started my bin, it was a rubbermaid tote in my basement and whenever I went to check on it, there were new dried worms on the floor. And, they would also crawl onto the lid, I don't know why? Looking for greener pastures???
post #26 of 34
Worms tend to "move out" when something is off, often when it is too wet.

This is my favorite vermicomposting site: http://www.redwormcomposting.com/
post #27 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by goldfinches View Post
Sounds like you've invented a cool bin! Do you have trouble with smashing your worms when you slide out a drawer or do they not crawl through your drainage holes?
I've never had a problem with this because of the way the drawers stack. There are no holes on the sides of the drawers where they slide in and out, only an inch or so further in where nothing touches the drawer as it slides in and out. If a worm is hanging out of one of the holes, it might get knocked off into another drawer, but it won't get smushed.

Oh, and my worms were escaping out onto the floor when there were too many of them in one level. So I moved some of them to a new drawer and now they don't travel anymore. So it is likely that escaped worms are looking for better conditions and something is wrong with the bin.
post #28 of 34
Does anyone have problems with fruit flies in their bins? I am just going crazy with the swarm in my kitchen. I've added more paper, put out fruit fly traps, sucked them up with a vacuum, but they just come back.
post #29 of 34
I don't have many problems with my bin 'cause I only add food ~1x per week, but my on the counter compost bin attracted them, and I ended up storing the compost in the fridge for a few months until they were gone.
post #30 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ex-stasis View Post
I made our worm bin out of one of these plastic storage drawer towers: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...SIN=B000MPQ2S2

I couldn't find one that wasn't clear, so I did have to spraypaint the outside of each drawer (dark green) and drilled holes in all the drawers except for the bottom one, which is for catching any excess liquid. It looks cute and was a fun project.
I love this idea! Thanks!
post #31 of 34
OK, I'm still having problems with my worm bin. I just started it late this winter. I have had quite a few escapees. Tonight I went to feed them and I opened the bin and there were literally a 100 or more worms hanging on the sides of the bin near the top. I've never seen that many up there before. It's making me think there is a really big problem now.

The bin has been in my basement since I started it. I'm not sure what the problem is. I followed the directions to set up the bin that I've seen on several different sites online. I used shredded newspaper for bedding plus a little soil. I've been adding food about every 4-5 days. It's mostly been things like banana peels, vegetable scraps, some coffee grounds, apple cores, etc. I'm not sure if I don't have enough drainage holes or if I'm feeding them the wrong amount?

How many holes do you have on the bottom and what size? How much do you feed per week?

My husband thinks I should just scrap the whole bin and dump into our outdoor compost pile and forget about having a worm bin. I really don't want to give up yet.

Any suggestions or ideas? Thanks!
post #32 of 34
Thread Starter 
We got our worms and set up our bin last week! We used the plastic drawer method and so far I love it! I have pictures of our setup - I just have to get them off my camera still but i'll come back and post.

I do think it is a bit too dry - I need to mist.

How long before you have your drawer or whatever "catching liquid" cause we don't have any liquid run off right now.

northwoods - As for holes, we followed the holes specifications on this http://whatcom.wsu.edu/ag/compost/Easywormbin.htm
1/8" air holes 1 - 1/2" apart. And then we have 20 1/4" evenly spaced holes in the bottom of drawers for liquid to escape and for worms to evenutally 'move up' to the next level.
post #33 of 34
I cleaned out 2 of 4 trays in my bin over a week ago and I haven't had liquid yet. When I cleaned out the bin, I cleaned out the liquid tray. For my liquid tray to drip, it needs about a 1/4 cup in there so I'm guessing it is filling up. How many times have you added food, and was your bedding damp?

Northwoods, my trays are similar to a screen on the bottom. It is important to have ventilation and to make it easy for excess liquid to run out instead of sit on the bottom. I don't think it would hurt to drill more holes...
post #34 of 34
I took a good look at the bin today and took out a bunch of stuff. Today when I looked at the bin there were only a couple up at the top.

I think there was too much food in there. I also drilled some more holes and then put the worms back in with some more dry bedding (cardboard and shredded paper). There was no standing liquid on the bottom---just wet mucky stuff. There are lots of wiggling worms left.

I also think I saw lots of eggs/cocoons. I hope that's what they are anyway--I'm hoping it's not some fly or mite eggs or something like that. I'm going to look up some pictures of red worm eggs to see if that's what is in there.
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