Getting Started Question

andypage727October 3, 2008

I started my worm bin 2 weeks ago. I have my worms in a large plastic tote. I bought the worm bin already entirely set -up for me with about 1/2 to 1lb of worms. I put some coffee grounds in initially and have been putting in some small fruit scraps but the worms haven't eaten much. How long does it take for a worm bin to become established? Should I continue feeding them even if they are not eating what I already gave them? Should I grind up food first to start? I am seeing some cocoons so thats reassuring, wondering about other people thoughts, thanks so much.

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terry_upstate_ny(5)

I recommend reading some books, "Worms Eat My Garbage" is pretty good. There really is alot to know about it. The worms don't actually eat the food, they eat the microbes that are growing from the food as it breaks down. If you are seeing cacoons you are probably on the right path. Good Luck!
Terry

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 5:15AM
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jasdip

Hi Andy,
Try putting some food in a container on the counter so it breaks down nice and soft before putting it in the bin. They eat the rot, not the actual food itself.

It will take time for fresh food to break down for the worms to eat it.
Put a bit in a corner of the bin and check in a few days. If it's gone, feed more in another corner and feed again when it's disappeared.
Depending on the amount of worms you got, try putting 1/2 cup of food in. the corner. If you got a mature, working bin with lots of worms, they should be able to handle whatever you can throw at them, within reason. We have to be cautious in the very beginning with new worms in new bedding (mail delivery).

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 6:36AM
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mndtrp

Two weeks isn't very long for things to happen. It took a month or so before I noticed any rapid changes in the bin. Just put the food in and leave them alone for a week, don't poke around.

I also don't see the point in leaving food on the counter to start to rot. Either put it in the bin to rot, or hold onto it in a container if the bin has enough food already. If the bin needs food, there isn't any point in leaving it on the counter, just put it in the bin.

I've also given up on the pocket feeding. Spreading it out just under the surface seems to allow more air to hit the food, which allows for more worms to access the food at a time.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 5:34PM
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rj_hythloday(8A VA)

The advantage to pocket feeding is it give the worms some place to go if things heat up. I've had a bin get very hot(just like my hot compost pile) after stirring in too much food.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2008 at 5:42AM
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jasdip

Pocket feeding is good especially for beginners for precisely the reason RJ mentioned. They have to get away from any potential overheating. They can just come and go as they please to eat, this way.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2008 at 6:47AM
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terry_upstate_ny(5)

Hi,
I read somewhere that composting the food for a few days encorages aerobic decomposition, which you want to encourage.
Terry

    Bookmark   October 11, 2008 at 1:32AM
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