Worm composting is using worms to recycle food scraps and other organic material into compost called worm compost or vermicompost. Worms eat the scraps, which become compost as they pass through the worm's body. Compost exits the worm through its tail end.
Your worm compost bin should consist of at least two compartments; a lower collection area for the liquid and an upper composting area where your kitchen waste goes. The upper level is where the worms actively work.
Worms need moisture, air, food, darkness, and warm (not hot) temperatures. Bedding, made of newspaper strips, compost or leaves, will hold moisture and contain air spaces that are vital to your worm's health.
You should use red worms or red wigglers in the worm bin.
When you have your wormery setup with the base layer and worms, cover with no more than 8-10cm layer of kitchen waste and leave for about one week to allow the worms time to settle into their new environment
A variety of any decaying organic matter works best. Here is what you can put in...
Don’t put in:
For best results, add little and often.
The wormery should retain moisture well if the lid is kept on so only add water if the wormery appears dry.
A well established wormery can be left without adding new waste for up to four weeks. However, you will need to drain off the liquid to avoid water logging the worms.
It’s a good idea to fork the compost over gently with a hand fork to check that the worms are present and healthy. I would do this every couple of weeks.
Wormeries take about 9 to 12 months to create a good set of compost. You must separate the worms before using the compost.
The worms often stay in the area just below the top layer of compost. Just remove the top 20cm layer and use it to restart the wormery again.
Many wormeries use stacking trays for the worms to work their way up. The final compost is in the bottom tray and can be removed. The tray can be emptied and returned to the top of the stack. This is great as you don;t have to sort the worms from the compost!
Your worm compost can be used as a soil conditioner. It is generally rich in nitrogen and potassium.
The liquid drained from your wormery can be used as a liquid fertiliser on your garden plants after diluting with water. Use a rate of 1 part liquid to 10 parts water.