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Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Posted by the_writ (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 17, 09 at 20:11

My worms should be here any day now. I was going to add half to the new garden after I have added all the Compost/OM before planting the veggies and the other half to my new worm bin. I just want to make sure that they we be able to survive in the soil and do what they do best.

Thanks
Michael


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Eisenia Foetida can survive in outdoor compost bins that are open to the soil surface for over wintering and manure piles. They live in organic matter and should not be added to the garden. They will not survive long( not the right environment and easy prey for bird being right on the surface). There are also some concerns about introducing worms into areas they are not yet in.
The best way to get more earth worms in the garden is to increase the organic matter and use mulch.


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Michael, everything that I've read about the EF says it does not do well in soil. EF is a composting worm and needs foods such as food scraps, paper, animal (cow, horse, rabbit, etc.) manure, dead leaves, and so on to survive on. So, the best thing you can do for them is to keep them in your new worm bin. Then, use the castings (worm poo) as a sort of fertilizer for your garden.

Good luck,
Robert


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Thanks for the replys. I guess I will just add them all to the bin and hope all the OM I added to the garden will attract some the old fasion way.

Michael


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Actually you can dig a trench outside, fill it cardboard, egg cartons and other brown materials, a bunch food and worms. Cover with straw, and they will thrive. A fellow just outside of town from me did this last summer. He was getting more food than he could handle from a restaurant, did this, and had a zillion worms. He's going to expand his trench theory this summer.
His tomatoes and pumpkins were huge last year.

www.redwormcomposting.com Check out his experiments.


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Yea I saw that site, it seems like he doesn't have pictures anymore. Did he just plant everything on the trenches or did he cover up the trenches and then plant directly on top?


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

You could do it either way - but I bet you get a lot of pests in summer with this open system.

Here is a link that might be useful: working worms


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

A possible compromise between the trench system and just adding the worms to the garden to fend for themselves is a Worm Tower. Check out the Youtube video from Leonnie Shanahan showing how to construct a Worm Tower.

Here is a link that might be useful: How to build a Worm Tower


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Keep mary_ld's comment in mind. It might not be a good idea to introduce huge amounts of worms into your yard, even if you can keep them alive, if they're not native to the area.


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Thanks folly_grows for that U-tube reference for the Worm Tower - brilliant concept. Gets the worm castings right down, where they are needed, to the roots of the plants - and with so little effort too!

The system virtually tricks the compost redworms into emulating the natural function of the common earthworms in getting the worm castings down deep into the soil. Great concept! A real con job!

Clever Aussies!

Here is a link that might be useful: Earthworm Versus the Redworm


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Takadi,
I searched the redwormcomposting site and I came across this page showing his trench layered with cardboard, straw and food.

http://www.redwormcomposting.com/large-scale-vermicomposting/the-vermicomposting-trench/


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

I saw that site some time ago, really good pictures and clear explanation. I still wonder about bugs in an outside trench system, but guess most would help break down the compost anyway.


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

I agree that introducing non native species can have negative affects on native species. I would make a pile and see what shows up naturally and work with that. Don't be surprised if EF does show up. They are pretty much everywhere and yes in the soil. When a cow defecates in an open pasture it doesn't include EF eggs but they somehow show up in the pile and it didn't rain them from the sky so yes they are in the soil. I've had them in my garden for years by adding manures. They will be fine.


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

IF I find EF in my CP or garden, I would collect them and add them to my indoors worm bin. But ... no such luck. I have to go the expensive way and would therefore NEVER put worms I bought so dearly out into the garden.
It's just me; I admit I'm cheap.
Otis.


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Hi Arkiegold 7 -

The ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle called worms 'the intestines of the earth.', but he also said that all species reproduce its own type, except worms and flies that are generated spontaniously from rotting fruit or manure.

Maybe eisenia fetidae, lean more towards Aristotle than Darwin! Lol

Here is a link that might be useful: What about the Workers


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

I guess I think everyone has a layer of rotting manure, hay and leaves in their garden. "Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?" Yes they can. Will they excel in the garden? Yes, given the proper ground cover in which they thrive which will retain moisture and keep weeds to a minimum and keep birds from eating them! Is there a better worm for burrowing into the deeper levels of soil in the garden? Yes, Eisenia Hortensis.


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RE: Can Eisenia Foetida be added to the garden?

Interesting discussion. One thing I feel could help all of us here is knowing the geographical origin of EF and Eisenia Hortensis, and what the name of the species is living in our local gardens. Does it vary by region of the US? Are there different varities of EF that act differently depending on which growing zone?

When people fear EF destroying native woodlands (which supposedly traditionally didn't have that kind of worm), what is the real threat (or not?).

Thanks in advance for anyone who has more specifics on this.

-Arugula
hardyecogarden.com


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