It is currently Sat Aug 27, 2016 4:35 pm

All times are UTC - 6 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 7 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2005 12:30 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
Posts: 12
Location: Rockdale,TEXAS
My 84 year old Dad does not do internet, so I am asking a question for him. His compost pile includes half a load of mushroom dirt and half a load of native cedar along with usual scrap additions. It has no earthworms, although it had an abundance last year. Can anyone tell us if not having earthworms in the pile is a problem? If so, what is the solution? Thanks for helping.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2005 12:06 am 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator

Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 3:45 pm
Posts: 2884
Location: San Antonio,TEXAS
I've found that my worm population cycles. Sometimes I have a bunch and sometimes I have few. The population will balance out with the worm predators.

_________________
David Hall
Moderator
Dirt Doctor Lawns Forum


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2005 9:17 am 
Offline

Joined: Sat May 10, 2003 5:48 pm
Posts: 806
Location: Weatherford,TX
Neither mushroom dirt or cedar are broken down as a finished compost. Along with the other scrap additions, the pile might be too hot for worms to live in it.

_________________
The "soap" you use is normally chemicals, etc. Use real SOAP !!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 11:31 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2004 11:48 pm
Posts: 45
Location: California, San Joaquin Valley - home of 105* summers, foggy winters.
half a load of mushroom dirt and half a load of native cedar along with usual scrap additions.

When did he add the mushroom/cedar? When he first set up the pile, or later, after he had his first good year?

Cedar is usually not a good wood to vermicompost with. The aromatic oils are at the very least irritating to the worms, and likely poisionous. The mushroom dirt is all right.

The other thing I can think of is that perhaps there were not enough scraps to keep them fed. Wood doesn't offer much in the way of nutrition, it's more like a medium for them to swim in. If you spread the scraps far and wide in the pile, the worms could die of starvation rushing from one food source to the next, and they're not used to eating that way. They prefer to eat at one "diner" 'till it's all gone, then move to the next "restaurant", hopefully, next door.

I hate to say it, but have him start a new pile using other materials. Let the other pile age for a year or two in the weather, and after that, add small amounts of it to the new pile.

_________________
http://homeschool.priswell.com/worms.htm


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:21 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2003 10:51 pm
Posts: 747
Location: Garland, Texas
shale, I believe that Dchall_San_Antonio, KHWOZ, and Priswell each have hit upon "causes" for your Dad's worm woes.

My pile (not containerized) also sees cycles or ebbs and flows in the worm populations. I have even attempted to "farm" worms by seeding my pile with Red Wrigglers. Don't waste your time or money.

The pile may be working "hot" which may cause the worms to move elsewhere. My original thought, in my own case, was that the worms would move to the outer cooler sections of the pile. So much for my trying to think like a worm :roll:

The cedar oils may be a problem. That sounds reasonable, but I don't know for certain.

Another possibility (or could be in conjunction with any or all of the above) is that your Dad's pile is too dry. The worms like moist.

Let us know how things work out for your Dad and his worms.

_________________
Keeping it clean and green here, Boss.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2005 3:01 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
Posts: 12
Location: Rockdale,TEXAS
:lol: Thanks for all your replies. I have printed and forwarded the information to my Dad. I'll let you know how the worms turn!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Apr 22, 2005 12:06 pm 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2003 8:09 pm
Posts: 1834
Location: Fort Worth,TEXAS
In my yard I've found a couple of those flatworms (planaria) that Howard has discussed on the radio recently. They *may* have come in via bags of no-float cypress mulch from the garden center. (My only evidence of this is that the two I saw in the last month were each plastered in slime to the plastic on the underside of bags from the nursery.) I'm familiar enough with the shape of the flatworm that I'd remember having seen them before this, even without his commentary. I've had a healthy worm population up to this point, and I'm still seeing a lot of them this year, but I wonder if that is about to change?

Howard suggests that flatworms eat worms (I saw a flatworm apparently consuming a snail under one bag). I've picked the flatworms up, wrapped them in paper and dropped them in the trash can, not in the compost like I might have with other critters. I don't want them segmenting themselves into an army (my compost is fairly passive, not particularly hot or fast) Since worms do live in and around my compost, I wonder if I should heat it up some to try to kill off the planaria, should they decide to head to that corner of the yard for their dining pleasure?

Any thoughts?


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 7 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 6 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by eWeblife