5/02/2009

Worm Bin Reconsidered

I recently became re-inspired to explore vermicomposting, partially due to reading the Bokashi Slope blog. I had previously ruled out keeping a worm bin in my studio apartment due to space constraints, but I am now planning to build my own worm bin in smaller dimensions than the prefabricated tubs tend to come in.

I am certainly happy with the results of my Bokashi composting so far, but the backlog of food scraps in the freezer (which are waiting to be added to my Bokashi tub, which is waiting to be emptied into my outdoor planter, which is waiting to be taken to the garden)...(phew!)...has been one factor leading me to reexamine other apartment composting options. Another factor is that I just have a natural curiosity about other types of composting, and would like to see how well I could keep a worm bin going.

Today I bought three small nesting tubs (for $4 each) and a matching lid from Target. The tubs are each about 8"W x 12"L x 6"H, with the bottom of each layer resting 1-1/2" above the one below it. The side handles flip up and down, so the lid unlatches easily, which will make it more convenient for adding fresh food scraps frequently. My homemade Bokashi bucket's lid is very difficult to open, which is actually good because that means it has a tight seal, but it also makes it inconvenient to open it frequently to add scraps - which is why I store scraps in the freezer and only add them to the bucket about once a week.

I read through this tutorial on putting together a homemade worm bin for some guidance. It specifies that you should use an opaque container, but all the opaque bins I've seen at both Target and Home Depot are way too large for my apartment. So I'm planning to keep it somewhere dark, like under the kitchen sink.

My next step is to borrow a drill in order to create ventilation holes, shred some bedding, and get some worms!

4 comments:

C.Y. said...

In case it doesn't fit well under the sink, can you paint the box opaque, or line it with dark plastic bags?

Jessica said...

That is interesting because I was considering Bokashi for the same reason that you are considering vermicomposting. I have a bunch of food stored up in the freezer that I would like to compost.

Be careful about overfeeding a system that is small. Plastic and small size is not very forgiving.

JMC said...

Thanks for the advice, Jessica :) I do intend to be very cautious about the amount of food I add to my tiny worm bin. I'll be sure to keep citrus and banana peels, as well as all animal products (other than crushed egg shells) out of the worm bin.

I plan to keep relying on the Bokashi bucket as my main composting system due to space constraints. The wording in my post probably wasn't the clearest - I know I can't use vermicomposting to alleviate my crowded fridge issue. I just need to be better about keeping my Bokashi cycle going.

The full freezer was just haunting me and keeping composting on my mind :) See my new post from today about my solution (hopefully) for the backlog in my freezer.

Pamela said...

Well, I did not try maintaining a wormery, but I am quite happy with my Bokashi Bucket. This is going great, and I am getting good results.