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vermicomposting and SFG

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vermicomposting and SFG

Post  has55 on 10/15/2013, 9:29 pm

I'm working on a experiment to compost via worms directly in my SFG. Someone probably has done it and would welcome some picture of their journey/results. I have just set it up and will fill it tomorrow with composted well age horse manure, coffee grounds, cardboard, some paper and vegetable waste. Let it sit , and put in worms saturday. Will do a progress report in future.



worm hole with screen


depth of bed 13"



valve cover box with holes I drilled


valve box top with drilled holes for aeration


base made from oil pan to add height. has drilled holes and bottom cut out


base pan inserted in hole


base in place



valve box in place


worm box with top off for seeing inside
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  sanderson on 10/15/2013, 10:21 pm

Has,  When I looked at your topic "SFG and the rain", I was wondering what you had in the beds.  Thanks for the explanation.  thanks Do keep us posted.
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  Marc Iverson on 10/16/2013, 1:11 am

Don't quite follow what you've done with the arrangement of pots, or why. Probably I'm just dim. Any further explanation would be great; also further updates would be cool, cuz I'm a big fan of worms and worm contraptions and ideas.
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  has55 on 10/18/2013, 4:42 pm

@Marc Iverson wrote:Don't quite follow what you've done with the arrangement of pots, or why.  Probably I'm just dim.  Any further explanation would be great; also further updates would be cool, cuz I'm a big fan of worms and worm contraptions and ideas.
Hi Marc, I hope these two videos I put on youtube clear things up.

1.

2. 

Austin
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  bnoles on 10/18/2013, 6:30 pm

Hi Austin,

That is some creative thinking and I subscribed to your YouTube so I can follow your updates. Thanks for taking the time to share.

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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 10/18/2013, 9:10 pm

Austin;
I will be looking for your updates, nice job.

I didn't do anything so spectacular, we just put in the worm tubes (as you can find the details in this thread: http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1603-worm-tube-for-the-sfg?highlight=worm+tube) and have had great success. My worms made it through our 106 degree days in a table top bed set up with no escape capability. We have tons of worms. We'll see how they do through the winter, our night time lows are mid to low 20s.

You sound like you've thought this through well, it will be fun to see how you progress. Thanks for sharing!
Audrey
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  sanderson on 10/18/2013, 9:12 pm

Please show us what it's like in 30 days from when you put in the worms. I'm curious how much castings these large containers can produce (considering the weather conditions,co course).
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RE: VERMICOMPOSTING AND SFG

Post  has55 on 10/19/2013, 11:03 am

audrey.jeanne.roberts, Thank you for directing me to that thread. It was wonderful and such a blessing. My hat off to the young man Josh. I learned quite a bit. Gardening never gets old and continues to explode with wonderful ideas from gifted people who will just get out there and try a new idea.
Questions, if you have time. You may have answer these questions somewhere else on the forum.
You tabletop result has gotten my attention.


How deep is your tabletop SFG bed? 
What was the watering pattern as the temp increase to 106 degrees?
 Did you use anything else to protect the worms and plants from the heat or is everything in shade? 
what is your soil mix? 
I'm using mel mix with added azomite, lava and greensand, dry molasses, shale with bale coconut coir instead of peat moss. I found the coconut coir holds water 10 times better, faster absorption and release rate is adequate. I found peat moss would hold water, but it needs to be standing a little while to absorb it. It actually shed water.


Question for the community-I'm trying to learn how to post replies correctly. When I select "post a reply", I get a new page, but the title does not transfer over.  I have to type it in or copy and paste. Is this suppose to happen?
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  sanderson on 10/19/2013, 3:00 pm

Has,  You don't have to type in the title in the "post Title" box, it automatically goes under the same topic thread.  If you want to change topics, then select "new topic" and select the topic category you want it under, and then type in a title you want to show.


Last edited by sanderson on 10/19/2013, 7:04 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : grammar)
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  has55 on 10/19/2013, 5:49 pm

Thank you sanderson. I added an update about the worms and irrigation system.
the web address for the aquajet is:http://www.intelligentirrigationllc.com/

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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 10/19/2013, 8:43 pm

@has55 wrote:Questions, if you have time. You may have answer these questions somewhere else on the forum.
You tabletop result has gotten my attention.


How deep is your tabletop SFG bed? 6-8 inches, 4 x 4 squares internal dimensions.  4-5 inches Mel's Mix, topped off with 3-4 inches of woodchips mulch.  These are small chipped branches with leaves from a tree service and break down into soil very quickly but keep the soil temps way down in the summer and moisture in.

What was the watering pattern as the temp increase to 106 degrees?  I have auto watering twice a day, drip, 15-20 minutes each time.  It over waters, but the mix gets fully wet and never dries out.

 Did you use anything else to protect the worms and plants from the heat or is everything in shade?   The mulch, at times I had shade cloth for my lettuce etc.  But it's it full sun.
what is your soil mix? Standard MM
I answered above next to your questions.  My 5 x 10 raised bed is 12-14 inches deep with 3-4 inches mulch.

I didn't measure the temps of the soil with a thermometer this summer, but every time I dug deep into it it was quite cool to the touch and there were worms.  Every time I planted I saw 3 or 4 worms at least.
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  sanderson on 10/19/2013, 11:56 pm

Has, Sounds like you have some hot weather questions.

Ditto on Audrey's reply.  I'm close to Audrey and our weather and climate are almost identical.  I'm flatland and she is low foothills.

I use 6" MM topped with 1-1 1/2" of plain light-colored wood chips (playground mulch).  Wiggle a finger under the light-colored wood chips and the Mix is cool!  Worms are cool.  For those few weeks above 100*, I put a double layer of tulle over heat-sensitive plants.  I'm on a city watering schedule so it's 3x week of drip for 20 minutes and hand water on off days.
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  has55 on 10/20/2013, 12:35 am

wow , that's impressive that woodchips mulch was so powerful in blocking the heat and allowing the water to stay and keep the soil cool. Ok, I'll try it this summer. Does this work for the winter? 

Austin
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  has55 on 10/20/2013, 12:41 am

@sanderson wrote:Has, Sounds like you have some hot weather questions.

Ditto on Audrey's reply.  I'm close to Audrey and our weather and climate are almost identical.  I'm flatland and she is low foothills.

I use 6" MM topped with 1-1 1/2" of plain light-colored wood chips (playground mulch).  Wiggle a finger under the light-colored wood chips and the Mix is cool!  Worms are cool.  For those few weeks above 100*, I put a double layer of tulle over heat-sensitive plants.  I'm on a city watering schedule so it's 3x week of drip for 20 minutes and hand water on off days.
what is tulle?
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 10/20/2013, 12:45 am

Tulle is the material bride's veils are made of.  You can find it in any fabric shop or online.  Very Happy

Austin; I haven't had the heavy mulch through a winter, but would assume it would insult from the cold as well. I'll keep an eye on it an let you know. We're zone 8a so we don't get all that cold to test it against freezing.
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  sanderson on 10/20/2013, 3:53 am

Austin,  Again ditto with AJ.

Wood is a good insulator.  My box sides are wood, some 1 1/2" (2 x 4's), others 3/4" (cedar fence planks).  The MM in the heat of the summer was the coolest in the thicker boxes.  In summer time, "cool feet with hot heads."  In the winter, well, as long as the feet don't freeze and the crop is a winter crop with cold heads.

I've never gardened in the winter before.  This is the first attempt.  But, I have a thin layer of mulch on some squares and none on the others.  Since MM is dark and the mulch is light, I'm thinking that the MM will heat up with the sun for growth.  In the winter, the garden gets spots of sun through the day.  I have frames ready for 3.5 mm plastic covers for storm and freeze protection.
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Re: vermicomposting and SFG

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 10/20/2013, 10:08 am

My table tops are made out of massive wood 6x6s plus 4x4s stacked. They were free as a previous owner had left them in a barn on our property. I hadn't thought about their contribution to the insulation.
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