How to breed earthworms


The California red worm It is used for household vermicomposting, or in other words to convert organic waste from our home and garden into vermicompost or earthworm humus, one of the most complete organic fertilizers that we can obtain for our garden or garden, without the need to add chemical fertilizers.

The California red worm or Einsetia foetida our earthworm is a foreign and distinct species. The red worm is mainly used for vermicomposting both domestically and industrially to obtain earthworm humus, although it is also used as fishing bait.

To obtain a good earthworm humus and perform the vermicomposting process correctly, it is better to know a little more about the way of life and feeding of this earthworm.

Biological cycle of the California redworm.

  • California red worms live about 4 years and withstand minimum temperatures of 0ºc and maximum temperatures of 40ºC.

  • The adult worms They have a thickened ring (clitelo) where the cocones (cocoons) are produced. They reproduce more than once a week.
  • From each coupling arise 2 heels With 2-4 worms each cocon. The content of the cocon will feed the small worms inside. With an optimum temperature of development between 20 and 25 ºC, they will remain in the cocón between 14 and 44 days.
  • After this time, small worms similar to adults come out of the cocon, with similar eating habits. These copies juveniles They measure a few millimeters in length and are transparent, so they are difficult to distinguish with the naked eye. After about 50-65 days they become reproductive adults, closing the cycle.

What do they eat? How do we feed them?

Earthworms feed on fungi, unicellular algae, bacteria, protozoa of organic remains, that is, they feed on organic matter that contains microorganisms.

Therefore, we can feed our worms with all kinds of biodegradable organic matter, that is, with household waste such as remains of fruit and vegetables, curd or boiled rice or pasta, eggshells, inkless papers and garden pruning remains as leaves and stems.

What we should not include in his diet animal remains (meat or fish), since they produce bad odors when decomposing.

The result of the action of the California redworm in the vermicomposting process is the earthworm humus, a natural fertilizer that gives plants all the nutrients they need, which chemical fertilizers frequently lack.

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Earthworms are ideal for fertilizing the garden soil so it will be good to know how to raise them

If you like the gardening and botany, you may wish to fertilize the soil of your crops with earthworms, one of the best remedies for natural soil fertilization, so we are going to offer you then a simple step guide so you know how to raise earthworms.

What are earthworms

The Earthworms are an ally in the garden. This type of worm, It feeds on manure and plant residues being thus the simplest system to recover the organic fraction of the waste, allowing the ecological transformation of any type of biodegradable material (leaves, splintered pruning residues, agri-food waste, but also sewage sludge and manure).

Are also self-sufficient Since they resist heat and cold alone, they are well outdoors and do not require structures. The only cure is to feed them three times a month with vegetable waste or manure. Further, They have 70% protein and can also be used in animal feed, excellent for example to wean chickens, fish, turtles, birds and other pets, are also used as fishing bait.

Finally, we have to point out that earthworms produce the so-called vermicomposted, a precious organic fertilizer, better known as humus, unsurpassed for fertilize the soil from the organic garden, to make seedlings in the seedlings and to make potted plants grow without problems on the balcony. Let's see how earthworms are raised.

Steps to raise earthworms

Breed earthworms It is an activity for which no special equipment is needed, you can even start with just an infirmo terrain space, a rake and a water pipe to irrigate. The investment in terms of tools is therefore minimal. You don't need containers or other structures because earthworms are simply self-sufficient and they survive in any weather, both at sea level and in the mountains, they can remain in the sun or in the shade without difference, neither do they attract other animals and emit no smell.

  1. Buy earthworms: The first of all will be to get earthworms. The usual thing is to buy earthworm humus that comes with worms and eggs and place them in the place where you want them to do their "work."
  2. From placing earthworms in the soil that you want to fertilize, and to be able to raise them and remain your ally, you must feed your worms every three months, in addition to divide the litters (groups) every three months and recoger the humus they generate once or twice a year.
  3. The worms are fed every ten days with a small layer of manure. The transformation into humus (general qualification: soil improver) is carried out in six months, at this point the fertilizer is collected and finally it is left to mature in piles in the open air, or it is used directly.
  4. To be able to feed your wormsIt is necessary to divide the ready material (grass, leaves, kitchen scraps, fruits and vegetables, manure, paper and cardboard) that can be stacked in a corner and the material to be crushed (branches). The material to be cut must be splintered and then mixed with the other elements. A better result is obtained the more varied and mixed matter is as oxygenation is improved and the humus remains more homogeneous. Earthworms transform well rotten material and already fermented more quickly, so it is better to prepare the compacted mixture on time, distributing it over the worms once the decomposition phase has advanced, without the gas and heat developments typical of the fermentation phase.
  5. The food is placed, extending it in layers of less than 5 cm (each month at most, put a layer of 15/20 cm above the litter). The amount of food is approximately 5-7 cm every 10 days, which allows the organic material to oxygenate and lose all acidity without fermenting. So earthworms They feed about 3 times a month from spring to fall. In winter, however, due to cold and mud it can be difficult to work with earthworms and it may be worth stopping and resting. However, from the end of November, you can offer a double feed (for example, 20 cm of manure) so that a small fermentation leaves the heat creating an optimal environment for earthworms. In the spring, you will see how more worms have been bred and humus production will resume at full capacity.
  6. As for the irrigation of earthworms, It should be frequent in the hot months, trying to keep the soil moist at a constant temperature, especially in June and July when you can water every day.

The rearing earthworms, as you read in this article, is a simple and affordable activity, which does not require large financial investments and can provide great satisfaction. The humus that is produced is the best possible fertilizer for the garden, nutritious and natural.

Raise worms at home

Raising worms in a house is not only possible, but also beneficial and productive!

Some very interesting tips you can see here.

See here

The first virtue is low space and low cost is required. You can raise worms in a small drawer, bucket or bin, new or reused, of plastic or wood, it doesn't matter, everything works.

In addition, only a small fraction of home space is required, and at the same time, produce an interesting amount of humus from organic waste generated in the home.

It also allows you to recycle organic household waste. This activity will allow a family to reduce household waste by up to 50%, transforming them into a fertilizer of excellent quality (ideal for use as fertilizer in house plants).

You can raise worms at home with 2 homeworm methods: the vertical system in drawers or buckets and the horizontal system (in hoppers).

Both methods are very simple to implement and can be used, both to obtain humus, and to raise earthworms for fishing.

The choice of one or the other method will depend on the availability or size of the space.

Unlike this method, large beds or beds built in the open sky are used in extensive agriculture.