Sugar Anyone?

dadugriffApril 25, 2014

Is it ok to add a spoon full of sugar between feedings or when food is scarce? Seems like this would perk up the beneficial microbes as well.

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sbryce_gw

I have never added sugar to the bin, but I have added small amounts of candy. I did not notice any problems, but neither did I notice worms flocking to the candy to eat it.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 8:05PM
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equinoxequinox

If the package does not say Cane sugar but simply sugar then it is most likely from beets which is most likely from GMO beets.

Do you not have banana peels or apple cores? How about corn cobs or broccoli or asparagus ends?

Vermicompost worms demand healthy vermicomposters. We only eat the stuff to feed the worms the scraps.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 10:30PM
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pskvorc(3)

On occasion, I tap the birch trees on my property and brew beer from the sap. (Birch sap has about half the sugar of sugar maple sap. 100 gal of sap to make 1 gal of birch syrup vs 50 gal of maple sap for 1 gal of maple syrup.) I have been thinking of using birch sap for the liquid I use to hydrate my bin. There is one pro and two cons. The cons are: 1) it is VERY labor intensive to collect the sap, and 2) I don't think there is any 'need' for more carbon in my bin. The pro is that birch sap is EXTREMELY prone to molding! One cannot wait even 24 hours before applying heat or cold lest mold forms and sours the sap for human consumption. HOWEVER, I think that proclivity to mold would be a "good thing" for the 'stuff' in the worm bin. Accelerating molding MIGHT (spoken from inexperience) get the foodstuffs broken down to 'worm-digesable' much quicker. Too late this year to test the "sap theory", but a large part of the "fiber" I am adding to my bin is birch leaves. They are also "sweet", as they ferment when bagged up in the fall.

Paul

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 6:53PM
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sbryce_gw

I am going to guess that birch sap has more nitrogen than carbon.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 9:41PM
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11otis

Adding "sugar" content to the bin and you will see more of the brown mites. Not sure if my bins got more mites or because that's where they congregated, they were more noticeable. Happened with my carrots that got frozen outside and rotted.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 1:39PM
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pskvorc(3)

"I am going to guess that birch sap has more nitrogen than carbon."

That guess should be wrong. I'll leave it to you to seek out the plethora of peer-reviews publications on the nitrogen content of [all caps on]maple[all caps off] sap. While I have not personally performed an assay of birch sap, I doubt seriously that it differs significantly in chemical [italics on]proportions[italics off].

In published literature and considering the commercial practice of collecting maple and birch sap for making syrup, nitrogen content changes throughout the season from early "sugary" sap to later "buddy-flavored" (unusable for syrup), sap. According to K.C Holgate (1950), at the end of the sap-collecting season, the sugar content of maple sap is 92%; the nitrogen content is 1.8%. Not exactly 'close' enough to base an argument on for most people. (For most scientists, an order of magnitude difference (10-fold) precludes the typical scientific argument of "it could happen". In this case, the sugar content exceeds the nitrogen content by more than FIFTY-ONE times.)

Since "sugars" - be that sucrose, fructose, lactose, galactose, etc., are the fundamental source of [italics on]food[italics off] for plants, I find it difficult to imagine how or why nitrogen content of a plant's [italics on]food supply[italics off] would exceed that of "sugar".

For those publications comparing birch and maple saps, (i.e. Kuka et al,2013), all report that maple sap has more amino acids than birch sap. All amino acids have nitrogen molecules. Therefore, in the absence of a specific reference, unless one wanted to assume some form of 'magic' it would be reasonable to assume that birch sap would have less than 1.8% nitrogen.

Paul

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 2:40PM
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