Communication

eric30January 27, 2009

I have a couple of questions:

1. Please give me your experiences about explaining indoor worm composting to people. Has anyone looked at you like you were a slovingly sloppy person? I was having a discussion today about the economy and sustainability with some folks. I mention such things as hunting and gardening. I mention that I compost with worms and people cringe. A friend of mine, 72 year old lady asks where I keep the worm bin and I tell her it is in the living room. She says a few words, turns, and walks away from me with a sour face.

2. Are there any shows on TV that discuss this (vermicompost)? There's the Green Network, and all kinds of home network channels. I saw a program on "gardening by yard" with Paul James and he covered an indoor composting system in a bin. It was flow through, kept it in the garage, he put in all the right stuff but NO WORMS! How is this possible? I figure an expert gardener would bring this up now if ever.

Feeling like a loner.

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pyropunk(Gauteng)

Eric

1) You are not alone. Even when doing outdoor worm composting I've had all responses from "eeww, that must smell terrible" or "I hate creepy crawlies" to "I don't have the time" to "Wow, maybe I'll try that myself". I think I may have converted one person. I have made it my mission to try and convert as many people as I can. I find that the best strategy is to be passionate, knowledgeable, convincing and don't hit them with the "worst" possible scenario first. Try to engage them about composting, then earthworms then bins and then only discuss inside or outside. To quote: "Once you've got them by the ba..s their hearts and minds will follow."

2) I started vermicomposting after seeing a show on our actuality programme called Carte Blanche. They were showing how the Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town vermicomposts all their kitchen waste and how you can start your own using a CoW. We have several other "Green" programmes, 50/50 for instance, and even though they have had segments on earthworms, the never had one about vermicomposting. Maybe I should suggest it?

At least you've got us ;-)

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 1:38AM
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jasdip

My Nickname on our Freecycle site is vermicmpstr. I get lots of inquiries when I converse with people about the exchanging of items. I've had some women interested in the idea, but they had to "run it by their husbands first" and that's as far as it got.

I love seeing the expression, and hearing comments when I tell people I have thousands of worms in my apartment. Even when I tell them what I'm talking about, it's amazing how often people will think they are running around loose. Go figure. A surprising number of people think they have teeth and can bite, too.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 8:56PM
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eric30

Yes, you guys are great.

I get a combination of reactions also. Most people think it is weird; but they are curious about it at the same time. I have given a small amount to 3 people to start their own bins and give them advice along the way.

I myself had no idea until just a few years ago until I decided that I needed good compost for my patio garden (Mel's mix). As a teenager I used to pick and save night crawlers for fishing but I saw no value in it beyond that. Of course I spent money on the special styrofoam box, bedding, and worm food; who knew?

I think that there would me much more awareness if this subject showed up more on tv and reading material. Now would be a good time with people looking for ways to sustain and save money.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 8:01AM
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Niivek

Trolling through old posts and thought I'd resurrect this one.
I love the fact that most people think raising worms is gross. I'm hoping to make some money off them in a few years and if everyone started raising worms, my market would dry up.
Also, I love grossing my mom and little sister out. They keep trying to set me up on dates and have no interest in dating right now. So I tell them that worms are a litumus test for women. If the woman is grossed out by my worms, it wasn't meant to be. If she's not, she's too crazy for me. There's a little Arthur Miller for ya.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 4:13PM
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thedogsLL(6B)

Me, too, on people thinking raising worms is gross. To give very brief background, my DH and I are property managers, so we have a business relationship with our local paper. When I first started learning about worm farming, I contacted our "account rep" and asked what kind of ink the paper uses.

She first asked me why on earth I needed to know something like that. So I told her. She came back with the "REALLY?!" I said yes, and asked would she like to know more, because it actually might be a fun project for her son in middle school, if she could get them interested.

Apparently not. She has found out for me that they use soy ink (which I no longer am so concerned about), and informed me that she had to go to upper management to get this info, and now refuses to even discuss the subject of worms, in any way, shape or form.
For some odd reason, she also is not so friendly in other ways. I think farming worms makes me weird, in others eyes. I think they are weird for not realizing what they are missing.
Lynn

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 6:35PM
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11otis

Lynn: if you have connection to a newspaper, you might want to ask them if they give away end of rolls. No printing on it so you don't have to worry. Some people managed to get them free from their local paper. No idea how big these rolls are.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 10:58PM
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thedogsLL(6B)

Interesting, I'll check it out. Thanks!

    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 6:09AM
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petrock1963

Kind of like trying to talk politics and religion at the local bar.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 3:48PM
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Shaul(Israel)

Much better to teach by example. If your garden/flowers/vegetables etc, look far better than others; then people are gonna wanna know your secret. Then you can discuss your hobby, but IMHO you're not going to create much interest by describing how you have several thousand worms in your apartment or that you have your wormbin in the Living Room.
People's fears are also not unfounded. If you've never had a mass worm escape, then you've still got a lot to learn. It's bad enough when it's only on the patio or basement floor but imagine if they were tangled up in your wall-to- wall carpeting, What then?
A couple years ago, someone posted on one of the Vermi Forums how he was hiding his two wormbins from his wife, by concealing them under the bed in the guest bedroom; and he also had a Shag rug. Now, that is a disaster just waiting to happen.

Shaul

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 4:53PM
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