Worms aren’t just for fishing bait anymore. The art of vermicomposting (using worms to produce compost) and vermiculture (raising and breeding worms) has reached new heights of popularity in recent times. Both environmentalists and gardeners (or anyone who is both) are finding them to be the cheapest, simplest, and space-efficient way to reduce garbage and create excellent gardening soil.
Of course, the worms you use for composting aren’t the same ones you can likely dig up in your yard or garden. Earthworms or night crawlers (lumbricus terrestrius) are not usually used for vermiculture or composting because they do not breed or do well in captivity. Instead, the two major types of worms used are eisenia foetida and lumbricus rubellis. The two are commonly called red worms, red wigglers, or manure worms. They are smaller than most night crawlers, have a red color (often very bright), and do very well in captivity, breeding quickly.
These worms are widely available and easy to come by. Most purchase them from a vermi-supplier for composting or similar use, but you can also often find them in some bait shops and fishing stores.
Where to Buy Composting Worms
The surest way to get the best quality vermicomposting worms is to purchase them from professional breeders. There are literally thousands of them selling online and off, so finding a local breeder may be possible and save you some postage. You don’t need too many worms to start, so postage is not usually too much regardless. Most sites sell worms by weight. Remember that one pound of worms is about 1,000 wigglers.
Clean Air Gardening is an environmentally friendly lawn & garden online supply store. Find vermicomposting supplies, including composting worms, as well as any other composting or vermicomposting need.
Red Worm Composting has a lot of information about vermicomposting on their site and worms available in various packages to suit your needs.
Garden Worms is a professional outfit that sells the worms you’ll need plus a lot of books, kits, and gardening items as well.
Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm is a more country-style, laid back site with a lot of vermicomposting and breeding information as well as, of course, worms for sale.
Acme Worm Farm is a semi-professional outfit whose website does not have a ton of information, but whose prices are often better than others.
Worm Man’s Worm Farm has every type of worm you can imagine and for every purpose. This is not a specialty vermicomposting outlet, but a worm warehouse.
The Worm Dude has a website that might be hard to navigate, but his products and resources are great.
Urban Worm Girl is the site for two girls that specialize in vermiculture for the urban lifestyle.
Mother Earth’s Farm is a vermiculture site and club based in Idaho and serving the northwest.
And, don’t miss Find Worms. It is a site to go to if all else fails. It’s a worm locator with a catalog of worm sellers and sources for many parts of the globe.
Acquiring and caring for worms in a home composting setup is easy, fun, and saves a lot of money, landfill space, and even time. Every gardener should look into vermicomposting.