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Published by: jimmiezigzag on Jun 10, 2010
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Vermicompostin g: Principles and



the process of producing organic fertilizer (vermicompost) from bio-degradable materials with earthworms


Similar to ordinary composting except that earthworms (vermi) are added In ordinary composting, microorganisms (i.e., bacteria and fungi) are the “decomposers” while in vermicomposting, microorganisms and earthworms (“soil engineers”) work together.

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Vermicompost does not heat. Vermicompost can be used for improving soil texture and enhancing water-holding capacity of soil. Vermicompost may be low in NPK but contains essential micronutrients (e.g., calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron and zinc) not found in “complete fertilizers.”

- Vermicompost has microbial activities that promote plant health and pest/disease resistance. - The quality of vermicompost depends on the materials used and the processes applied.


Action of earthworms in the composting process has the benefits/advantages of: ─ C:N (C-75% N-25%) ─ Compost-feeding earthworms (e.g., “African nightcrawler”) digest organic matter in their alimentary tract and produce “sanitized, deodorized and texturized” humus (castings). ─ Vermicompost consisting of castings and undigested organic matter contains plant growth regulators (i.e., auxins, gibberelins and humic acid)

Plant Nutrient Profiles of Grasses (75%) + Kakawate Leaves (25%) BEFORE AND AFTER VERMICOMPOSTING
Nutrient (%) Nitrogen Phosphorus Potassium Calcium Magnesium Iron Copper Zinc Manganese BEFORE 0.53 0.29 0.65 0.02 0.08 0.12 0.001 0.004 0.006 AFTER 2.74 1.33 3.54 0.29 0.52 0.43 0.005 0.01 0.03


For Japanese rice (Korishaki variety) production in Canlaon City, Oriental Negros OISCA FARM (c/o Tony Mapa)
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Vermicompost is produced from rice straw and cattle manure Vermicompost is applied at two tons per hectare during land preparation (basal); urea is applied for top-dressing Rice yield is 1.6 tons/ha in wet season and 2.4 tons/ha in dry season. Savings on use of chemical fertilizer; improved soil structure and good eating quality of rice


For sugarcane production in Negros Oriental (more than 4,000 has) Rolly Bongoyan (Basay)

Vermicompost is applied at 1.5 tons/ha at a cost of P4,500 in addition to 150 kg of chemical fertilizer (P3,000). Sugarcane production increased from an average of 55-60 metric tons to 70-80 metric tons/ha Average sucrose recovery rates improved to 2.51 LKGTC from 2.10 LKGTC


Alex J. Amor, Jr. (Sibulan) -Vermicompost produced from
bagasse, sawdust, leaves and animal manures -Vermicompost is applied at 750 kg – 1 ton/ha -Yield of sugarcane is 90-100 tons/ha with 1 ton of vermicompost (P3,200) and 400 kg of chemical fertilizer with savings of at least P7,000 compared to using chemical fertilizer alone.

Advantages of Vermicomposting
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Faster than many other forms of composting Resulting soil is richer than many other forms of composting Easy to set up and manage Environment-friendly Recommended method under RA 9003 (Ecological Waste Management Act of 2001) Provides income

Advantages of Vermicomposting

Eliminates the problem of garbage disposal (70% of garbage going to landfills can be composted) Reduces biodegradable wastes to about 1/3 of its original size Local markets of vermicomposting are growing Vermicompost has no offensive odor, texturized, and pathogen-free

Materials needed

Earthworms (African Night Crawlers) - 100 worms per square meter The Culture bed - maybe a clean steel barrel, used basin, pail, used cement bags, etc. - maintain 60% moisture level of pile -Ideal depth is 18 inches and varies in sizes from 3x3 ft to 4x8 ft.

Materials needed

The Culture bed - the deeper the bed, the more compact it gets, and with little activity of the worms - must be free-draining under the composting bed

Materials needed

The Feed Stock - anything of biodegradable nature (vegetable left overs, animal manure, rice straw, banana stems, dried leaves, banana peelings, farm wastes, grasses, etc. - shredding hastens decomposition - must be kept at darker environment - for good quality organic matter, combine 75% grasses & 25% kakawate leaves

Materials needed

75-90 kgs compostible materials needs 1 kg of vermi (worms) - in 30 days, 0.5 kg earthworms can produce 10 kgs of vermicompost - 3 parts grass (75%) & 1 part Nitrogen source (25%) (may include animal wastes, kakawate leaves, ipil-ipil leaves, azolla, vines, kudzu, centrocema,mungo, peanuts and camote)

Materials needed

The Feed Stock - must undergo anaerobic decomposition before putting the worms - water the vermicomposting units occassionally - provide shelter from heavy rains to minimize leaching out of plant nutrients; also against predators such as birds, rats, frogs, ants, etc.


Organic Fertilizer

Comparative Cost: 50 kg sack Chemical Fertilizer vs. Vermicompost
Year 2006

Year 2007

Urea: P 800 -950
Made from natural gas

Urea: P 950.00 -1,000+ Vermicompost P 200.00-250.00

Vermicompost P 100.00-150.00

Made from leaves, grass, animal manure, etc.

Vermicompost for SALE…… P 8.00 / kl. - P 10.00 / kl. P 200.00 per bag (50 kls.)

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