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A Worm bin that is 3 years old

 
John Wilhelm
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Three years ago I was raising Red Worms and than my wife got sick and never was able to care for the worms and would like to know if I could put new Red Worms back into my bins that has dead red worms in the beds again? The beding is Black Kow manure and Staglim Peat Moss?

Should I throw it out and start over?

Could you make worm tea out of the old beding?
 
I need some advance on this.
 
Alan Kirk
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Location: Reno, NV
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I believe you should be able to start right up again as long as there is enough food and moisture and the right temperature in your bin.  If what is in the bin looks like mostly finished castings then it would be best to start with a fresh batch of manure and moss.  I believe the best tea is made from fresh castings.
 
Dawn Hoff
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I think so would empty it. Not because it has dead worms in it, but because the manure should be composted by now. I mean why did the worms die? My bet is because there wasn't anymore food for them? Or did the whole ting dry out? I leave my worm in unattended for months at a time, and it doesn't bother my worms at all - as long as there is plenty of food (primarily carbon) and they don't dry out that is.

The worm tea is usually a sign of excess water - the wormbin should be moist but not wet. Sometimes you need to add a lot of water to keep it moist, and catching the worm tea is a great byproduct of that - but I wouldn't make it from the finished compost, because you would only be washing nutrients out.
 
Megan Palmer
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Location: Queenstown, NZ
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Dawn Hoff wrote:The worm tea is usually a sign of excess water - the wormbin should be moist but not wet. Sometimes you need to add a lot of water to keep it moist, and catching the worm tea is a great byproduct of that - but I wouldn't make it from the finished compost, because you would only be washing nutrients out.


the liquid that washes out from the bottom of a worm bin is leachate and whilst a useful byproduct, is not nearly as beneficial as worm tea which is in fact castings that have been soaked in water and aerated for use as a foliiar spray and/or fertiliser. Leachate can contain harmful organisms - do a quick search of leachate vs worm tea for a fuller explanation.
 
Dawn Hoff
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Megan Palmer wrote:
Dawn Hoff wrote:The worm tea is usually a sign of excess water - the wormbin should be moist but not wet. Sometimes you need to add a lot of water to keep it moist, and catching the worm tea is a great byproduct of that - but I wouldn't make it from the finished compost, because you would only be washing nutrients out.


the liquid that washes out from the bottom of a worm bin is leachate and whilst a useful byproduct, is not nearly as beneficial as worm tea which is in fact castings that have been soaked in water and aerated for use as a foliiar spray and/or fertiliser. Leachate can contain harmful organisms - do a quick search of leachate vs worm tea for a fuller explanation.

OK - thanks!
 
Ronnie Ugulano
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I'd go ahead and use what's there to become the base of the new startup. Just add some additional bedding and worms, and start over. Don't worry that the worms previously died there.
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