Worms Eat My Garbage – A Book Review

In Book Reviews, Soil & Gardening by James2 Comments

I got worms. I’ve always wanted to be able to say that with a straight face after seeing Lloyd Christmas tell Mary Swanson that as he drove her to the airport in the comedy classic Dumb and Dumber. And now I can. Worms Eat My Garbage tells the story of how we all can say “I got worms” with a straight face and really mean it. Most people nowadays are aware of composting systems. But I wonder how many have seriously entertained the thought of having their very own worm composting system? I’m going to guess, not many. The general thought of harboring worms in your home is not overwhelmingly appealing to a lot of people. However, once you learn how to set up and maintain a worm composting system, the worm wheels just may begin to start turning. What is a worm wheel? I don’t really know, I just made that up for thematic purposes. I apologize if I raised false hope for anyone reading this post. Alright, so lets get down to brass tacks on worm composting and this fantastic guide.

What’s the basics of worm composting?

Basically it’s just like the title suggests, worms eat your garbage. Actually they only can eat food garbage. And what’s the pay off? Worm castings, a.k.a worm poop. Why is worm poop so awesome? It’s one of the best organic fertilizers available. A vermicast is a single worm casting or quantity of worm castings (poop).The technical name for worm composting, is vermicompost. Vermicompost is the combination of vermicast plus other decomposed organic waste, such as food and bedding that will be present in your composting system. So in a nut shell when you have a vermicompost system you are getting an organic garbage disposal system with the benefit of some of the best fertilizer that is available.

What’s in the book?

The book is about 130 pages and includes a nicely detailed glossary and appendix. It’s very reader friendly with numerous eye friendly illustrations. To give you an idea of exactly what the book covers I’m going to include the checklist which is on the first page of the book:

1. Read Worms Eat My Garbage

2. Weigh kitchen waste for two to three weeks to get average amount produced in your household…. 14-15

3. Determine quantity of worms you need and order worms…. 51-55

4. Purchase bin or select size of container required and assemble materials…. 12-29

5. Determine what beddings are available, and either order or scrounge…. 30-37

6. Build or assemble bin…. 16-25

7. Prepare beddings. If manure, do so at least two days prior to arrival of worms…. 56-59

8. Add worms to bedding…. 60-61

9. Bury garbage…. 60-72

10. Check moisture periodically; look for cocoons and young worms…. 73-75

11. Harvest worms and prepare new bedding…. 75-86

12. Use vermicompost or worm castings on house plants or in your garden…. 110-119

That’s the checklist, and of course the book gives you all the details to accomplish each task. The beauty of worm composting is it’s low maintenance, cheap, and everybody can do it. It’s also rich with options. There is more than one way to do almost every step in the process, so you can custom fit it to your circumstances.

Aside from the checklist the table of contents is going to give you an idea of what to expect with this book. Each chapter is a question. Brilliant design for a how to book.

Chapter 1: What should I call it? Chapter 2: Where should I put the worm bin? Chapter 3: What container should I use? Chapter 4: What are worm beddings? Chapter 5: What kind of worms should I use? Chapter 6: What is the sex life of a worm? Chapter 7: How many worms do I need? Chapter 8: How do I set up my worm bin? Chapter 9: What kind of garbage, and what do I do with it? Chapter 10: How do I take care of my worms? Chapter 11: What are the most commonly asked questions about worms? Chapter 12: What are some other critters in my worm bin? Chapter 13: How do plants benefit from a worm bin? Chapter 14: How can I treat waste as a resource?

There you have it. This book is simple and to the point. It’s a fun and easy read, yet it’s packed full of information.

I have not tried worm composting myself, but after reading this book I’m definitely going to give it a shot. Once I get my system going I’ll post a follow up article to let you know how it’s going. I encourage anyone who eats food and has plants, a garden, or wants plants and a garden to give it a try. And if nothing else you’ll be able to say, “I got worms.”

The author of this book, Mary Appelhof, also produced an educational video called “Wormania!” I was lucky enough to find the intro clip to it online. After viewing it, I now know what my next mission is: Find the entire video, and view it multiple times. It’s the ultimate combination of education and entertainment. Enjoy!

Buy the book via Amazon by clicking HERE (It’s an affiliate link so I get a little kickback if you buy. Thanks!)



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