Vermicomposting, worm bin, composting with worms community and forums

Don Dillon
  • Richmond, VA
  • United States
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rhubarb leaves
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Started this discussion. Last reply by Miss Mitchell Apr 21, 2011.

leaf mulch as a foodsource
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Started this discussion. Last reply by Sharon Hollars Mar 21, 2011.

Sometimes we go a little too far ;)
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Started this discussion. Last reply by Lorrie Mar 5, 2011.


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Profile Information

When did you start composting with worms?
March 1, 2009
How were you introduced to vermicomposting?
Summer 08
What do your worms like to eat?
kitchen scraps
What kinds of worms do you have?
EF and Garden composters
What worm bins do you use?
DIY wood bin, and mini laundry basket type bin
How many pounds of garbage do your worms recycle each week?
About Me:
I intend to grow my squirm to several hundred pounds to use the castings in my greenhouse operation (three 40'x100' greenhouses) and later as a side business selling castings and worms.

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Don Dillon's Blog

mesh bags for VC Tea

Was looking for a filter bag for Homemade soymilk and ran across this site  McMaster-Carr The mesh filter bags would be perfect for VC Tea making.  They come in many different Mircron particle sizes and are quite inexpensive.  

Posted on January 23, 2012 at 11:04am

Virginia Earthquake

So, there was a 5.9 earthquake centered about 30 miles from here just now.  Fun ride ;)  I wonder if this will freak out the worms and make them want to try to leave the wormbin?

Posted on August 23, 2011 at 12:23pm — 5 Comments

Another score

To finish my backyard landscaping project, I need to remove a bunch of overgrowth, ivy, ground cover, etc.  I didn't have a lawn mower to help with this because the main drive for the new landscaping was to get rid of the lawn (LOVE IT).  I actually didn't mind mowing the lawn, it was very immediate satisfaction when finished (for a week), but I absolutely loath gas lawn mowers( breaking, upkeep, not starting....).

But I've been watching craigslist lately for electric mowers for…


Posted on August 15, 2011 at 5:54am — 3 Comments

Free Mulch

We had a big ol' limb break off one of our Maple trees in a storm a couple of weeks ago.  finally got to loading up the truck (filled the bed, it was a big limb) with the branches and took it to the dump.

I knew they chipped it and the mulch was available for taking, but is wasn't all that nice before, and you had to shovel it in if there was not a guy available with a loader.

All that has changed.  The mulch looks just like the double shredded stuff I bought last year (8 yards…


Posted on August 15, 2011 at 5:42am — 5 Comments

Alabama Jumpers spitting at me


Well, maybe not spitting, but squirting.  I was grabbing a bunch of jumpers out at our nursery to transplant to my home raised beds yesterday.  It's fun to see how fast they can dig down into fairly heavy material.  When I tossed one in the bucket, I was touching it's tail to encourage him to dig fast (Ok, I was messin' with it), and it squirted a stream of clear liquid back up at me, and hit my hand.  It probably shot up about 5 or 6 inches.  It didn't smell or anything, as I was…


Posted on July 11, 2011 at 5:51am — 4 Comments

Comment Wall (14 comments)

At 12:34pm on July 22, 2009, Raven Caves said…
give me your email and i'll send it to you.
At 2:47am on September 27, 2009, Daniel Pieterse said…
Hi don Worm towers are a new experiment so I don't have all the answers yet? But keep on visiting, I will update as I grow into it. I Live in Sunny Mossel Bay; South Africa and we have got the second best climate in the world (ha ha!) Just joking but almost no rain for last 2 years so no frost or snow but almost dessert conditions. I build the wiching worm raised beds for experimenting in dry conditions. Worm towers youtube link I just finished my towers and raised wiching worm beds with new photos
At 8:35am on October 1, 2009, Tony D said…
Hey Don, Nice photos of the new worm farm. I'm curious to see how the two types of bins (wooden vs. plastic tray) will compare on worm herd growth and keeping mites out of the bin.
At 9:18am on October 1, 2009, Bones Stiziles said…
Thanks Don, I'm glad you enjoyed the videos.
At 6:07pm on October 1, 2009, Mark from Kansas said…
Hey Don,
I really like those bin set ups you got.
Those plants in your greenhouse look great.
The last time I had my VC checked, it was N=6 P=227 K=668 with a ph of 8.5. My new harvest will have different values due to some changes in feed.
At 2:50pm on June 21, 2010, Mark from Kansas said…
Hi Don,
It’s kind of hard to explain but I’ll try. In that video, it was cold out side and the bin was inside the house. At first when I left the lid on, I found a lot of moisture on the lid and a lot of tiny worms (1/8 of an inch). The only way I could get those babies off the lid was to rinse then into another working bin. What I decided to do was, leave the lid off, cover it with some burlap, and bury some sections of melon. It seemed to me that the babies were attracted to the condensation on the sides and lid, by replacing the lid with burlap, the moisture evaporated and the melon became the ONLY source of moisture. Sometimes the top of the VC became moldy, and as you know, worms love mold. I scooped up the moldy stuff (a small handful) and fed it to the active bin.
If I may suggest, for a 30 gallon tub, you may want to consider buying two cantaloupes, cut into quarters and bury them so they are one inch under the surface. After about a week pick up a section and see what you got. If you got a room that is cool, it will work.
As far as the VC goes, I had an 18 gallon tub with finished VC for about three seasons that that never went sour. I believe (and I don’t know how to prove this) that the worms have already digested the bacteria that would cause the finished VC to go anaerobic.
The other theory is that I’m just damn lucky.
How did that rotten straw work out for you?
At 1:37pm on June 22, 2010, Mark from Kansas said…
Hi Don,
That bin was kept inside, was still moist, and did not smell.
The bin had about 20 -1/8 inch holes in the top.
At 8:25am on August 23, 2010, Mark from Kansas said…
I think you will find that the stuff on the bottom will stay moist due to the fibrous nature of the VC. I add cardboard and other things like that. The material I harvested back in June (?) has been sitting in my garage that maintains a temperature of 100 degrees F +.
I just stuck my moisture meter in my VC a few minutes ago and it shows 70%.
I found that the tightly packed muddy stuff on the bottom is common. Before I screen it, I may put the muddy stuff in a paper bag or a cardboard box for a day or two and some of the moisture will be wicked up. I then force it through my 1/8 screen, in a way, it is almost like grinding it. When I store my VC in tubs, like you have done, I put the lid on top with a 2” hole on top with some of that vinyl screen over that to keep bugs out.
If you discover a white fungus growing on top of your finished VC, don’t be alarmed.
Scrape that off and throw it in one of you active bins and toss in a dozen worms into the tub of finished VC. The worms will continue to feed, also if you take one of those tubs to the farmers market and your customers see the worms, it could make a dramatic impact statement to the freshness of your product. I am not sure what the shelf life is for finished VC, I think I was told 12 - 18 months but, it is hard to explain how microbes work to a customer.

Take it easy and I hope to see your green house one day.

At 9:36pm on November 21, 2010, jean kruse said…
Don, the roof panels in my small grnhse are older and don't let in enough light anymore-didn't get them replaced before the cold weather hit- would you have any suggestions about what type of supplimentary light would be best? I grow mostly tomato and pepper plants to sell in spring in this house.
At 7:42am on February 21, 2011, Jason Kalka said…


For your rotary harvester motor... maybe you could go for more of a man-powered motor.

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