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Janet Kaupke
  • Female
  • Brea, CA
  • United States
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White fungus overtaking the bin
15 Replies

I have a large wooden flowthrough bin in my garage. I have noticed a thick white substance growing in the bin. I want to call it a fungus, but don't really know what it is. It is thick and spongy. I…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by Martin Jun 6, 2014.

using pure castings vs vermicompost
6 Replies

I am getting ready to plant tomatoes and flowers and wondered if someone could share their process for using the castings in the garden. I have available both pure castings and vermicompost (from a…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by Janet Kaupke Mar 12, 2013.

Will they eat the cardboard bedding?
3 Replies

I have heard that fresh bedding should be added to the bin with each feeding. If I am feeding food scraps and using cardboard as bedding material, will the worms continue to eat and process the…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by Sue Mar 2, 2013.

 

Janet Kaupke's Page

Latest Activity

Martin replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"I think fungus is a good thing.  There can be worst things in your worms bins for sure!"
Jun 6, 2014
Steve Lambert replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"Janet, I have been dealing with a very similar situation and what I did was gently break it up with a steel 4-tine hand cultivator and continue light feedings.  I did mist that area a little more to get more moisture into it as it seemed really…"
Jun 1, 2014
Allison replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"Fungus is good for the worms right?  I'm sure I read that they eat it.."
May 31, 2014
Armoured replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"It's very hard to tell from photos, but it does look like 'normal' fungus or actinomycetes that break down lignin (basically wood fibre). I've generally seen it in drier areas though so I'm not at all certain. Does it smell…"
May 12, 2014
Ian Carruthers replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"You get a fungus something like that that grows on dead wood/tree stumps perhaps it comes from the wood on your bin & now thriving on the cardboard, if it's not taking up more than 1/4 of your bin space and the worms are still happy then…"
May 12, 2014
Ar-Pharazon replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"Wow, that is weird.  It doesn't look like fungus to me, in that picture -- in fact it doesn't even look alive.  Almost like some kind of deposit. Fungus would probably look fibrous or fuzzy.  A bacterial colony would…"
May 9, 2014
Patricia replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"eeekkk!  Wow.  Never saw that before.  Well, in the absence of some others weighing in on this, I would say that if they are trying to escape you are going to lose them anyway if you don't do something about it.  Since you…"
May 9, 2014
Janet Kaupke replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"I reached down and pulled these pieces from the bottom of the bin. As I said, it forms a layer several inches thick that the worms can not or will not penetrate. There is a slight sweet odor, not anything nasty. I have not noticed any die off, but…"
May 8, 2014
Janet Kaupke replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
May 8, 2014
Armoured replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"The 'spongy and thick' description throws me off, but my first thought is actinomycetes - a bacteria that when it spreads looks like a fungus (and for a long time was thought to be a fungus). It will eventually invade shredded cardboard…"
May 7, 2014
Patricia replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion White fungus overtaking the bin
"Wow.... I have never heard of that before.  I sure hope you can get some answers about what that might be in there.  I would think that it is a fungus as well.  Is the bin very wet?  Are you experiencing a "die off"?"
May 7, 2014
Janet Kaupke posted a discussion

White fungus overtaking the bin

I have a large wooden flowthrough bin in my garage. I have noticed a thick white substance growing in the bin. I want to call it a fungus, but don't really know what it is. It is thick and spongy. I wouldn't really care except it appears to be impenetrable to air or water. I think it is creating a thick layer in the bottom of the bin preventing proper airflow.Has anyone experienced this? The bedding material I use is mainly shredded cardboard.See More
May 7, 2014
Janet Kaupke replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion Optimum temperature for brewing in the group vermicompost tea users
"I bought an aquarium heater, and now the tea stays warm despite being outdoors overnight.  Thanks for the advice."
Mar 26, 2014
Daniel J Kline replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion Optimum temperature for brewing in the group vermicompost tea users
"Wow! Stuff must be growing at your place despite the famous drought! I can't even think about tea because here in Richmond, VA they forecast a lot of snow and ice for us overnight and tomorrow, Feb.13, 2014, Valentines day!! I will face this…"
Feb 12, 2014
Tom Bergstrand replied to Janet Kaupke's discussion Optimum temperature for brewing in the group vermicompost tea users
"A simple aquarium heater would help. If you are going to dilute the tea after brewing try using warm unchlorinated water for the mix."
Feb 11, 2014
Janet Kaupke added a discussion to the group vermicompost tea users
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Optimum temperature for brewing

I am fairly new to brewing tea and have done most during the summer months when the outside temperatures are warm in Southern California. If I brew now, the water temp will probably be 40-55F. Is this too cold to encourage the microbes to reproduce?  Do I need to heat the water?See More
Feb 11, 2014

Profile Information

When did you start composting with worms?
October 1, 2011
How were you introduced to vermicomposting?
through an acquaintance with an organic farm
What do your worms like to eat?
food scraps, cardboard, manure
What kinds of worms do you have?
red wigglers
What worm bins do you use?
currently rubbermaid, changing to wooden FT
How many pounds of garbage do your worms recycle each week?
5

Comment Wall (2 comments)

At 4:57am on January 17, 2013, Joseph Despins said…
Welcome to Vermicomposters!
At 10:25am on January 17, 2013, Joseph Despins said…

Thanks for your nice comment, Janet. Before I began to use worms for composting, once a year I would stop at tackle shops and bought a few containers of Lumbricus terrestris that were being sold for bait. I would then hold a solemn ceremony at my front garden and grant them freedom by releasing them into my garden patch.  I never claimed to be sane hahaha.

 

You may be able to find free food sources if you ask coffee shops to bag used grounds for you or grocery store produce departments to keep spent veggies. You'd probably get too much as a result which would not be a problem if you expand your worming operation as indicated.

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