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Worm Farming

Worm Farming

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Published by: Green Action Sustainable Technology Group on Jul 23, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Putting Northland first
Composting andWorm Farming
Nature’s Recycling System
Why compost?
Every year Kiwis throw away more than three million tonnes of rubbish, of whichmore than 45% is food waste!Every 6kg of unsorted rubbish sent to landfill emits nearly 5kg of carbon dioxide –a greenhouse gas - into the atmosphere. Yet most of what we throw away could besorted and disposed of in a far more eco-friendly way.
What is compost?
Nature’s recycling system
Your household produces an enormous amount of waste each year that could becomposted. Having a compost or worm bin in your backyard is a great way to reduceyour waste and help protect the environment.
Home composting has many benefits
Compost is a natural fertiliser and soil conditioner. It improves soil fertility andtexture, and retains moisture and nutrients.It is cheap and is easy to make.The amount of water pollution, gas release and odour from landfills is decreased.Air pollution is reduced from burning garden waste.Your garden will require fewer garden chemicals because compost-rich soil growshealthier, more productive plants which often have more resistance to pests.Compost or mulch also reduces the amount of water used because soil does not dryout as fast.Composting is easy and you can choose a system to suit your lifestyle. You maycompost at home with a compost bin or worm farm, get a garden bag company tocollect your garden waste or deliver your garden waste to a composting drop-offpoint at your local refuse transfer station.
ISBN 0-909006-24-5
The Northland Regional Council acknowledgesthe Auckland Regional Council and ChristchurchCity Council Waste Management Unit for theinformation contained in this brochure.
Getting started
You can either buy a compost bin or make awooden box for the compost. If you are building one, remember to leave space between the slats of wood for air circulation.A 1 x 1 metre compost bin is a good size.All compost bins should be bottomless andplaced on the bare ground in a sunny spot.They work best in a warm, moist location.Begin with a bottom layer of coarse plantmaterial like twigs, followed by alternatelayers of garden waste and food scraps witha thin layer of soil.
What to include in your bin
You will need a variety of materials whichare found naturally in your garden or comefrom the kitchen. They are called “Greens”and “Browns.”
- are nitrogen-rich wastes likekitchen food scraps, fruit peels, coffeegrounds and tea bags, grass and plantclippings, hair, animal fur, blood and bone, seaweed, fish bones and choppedweeds (except for Onion Weed,Wandering Jew, Wild Ginger andOxalis).
- are high in carbon and otherelements. These may be dried leaves,sawdust, wood shavings, hay, peat,vacuum cleaner dust, shredded paper,and newspaper, eggshells and crushedseashells, coal ash, wood ash (untreated),chicken manure, blood and bone.
What to leave out of your bin
Meat, grease, fat, dairy products, large bones, food packaging, plastics, wood products,pest plants (see www.nrc.govt.nz for more information), and underground stems, forexample kikuyu grass stems. Cat and dog faeces are not recommended in largeamounts. They may create an odour problem and there are very little nutrients in them.
Example of compost layers.
     C   o   u   r    t   e   s   y   o     f     A   u   c     k     l   a   n     d     R   e   g     i   o   n   a     l     C   o   u   n   c     i     l .

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