It was only after studying permaculture for 12 months that I really understood why someone should choose a worm farm over a compost system or vice versa. Although the details and chemical processes are quiet complicated the decision making process is easy. Now if the perfect time to start setting one up. As the weather cools down for Autumn you’ll have plenty of time to collect everything you need. So, let me break it down for you (pardon the pun).
A compost is what is called a “hot system”. That means it relies on the organic matter getting hot in order to break down. It can get so hot that it can be used as a hot water system in winter! To get it up to the right temperature there needs to be a good mixture of brown/fibrous and green/floppy stuff. There also needs to be a lot of it because it has to be piled up and left to sit until the core temperature simmers down to outside temperature. Only then can it go onto the garden bed. Keep an eye out for the next blog post explaining how to do just that.
A worm farm is what is called a “cool system”, which has a temperature range of approximately 18-25 degrees Cecilius.Worm farms appreciate a constant supply of food so if you are wanting to add the daily food scraps to the system then this is the way to go. Choose an open bottom worm farm that is close to your garden beds, afterall the worm’s primary purpose is to eat the scraps and poop it into the soil. They will come and go to do their job. The more food you have for them the more will come to join the feast! Having an open bottom worm farm allows the worms to free range taking it to where it is needed. Happy worms = happy garden. It is also less maintenance so double YAY.
In short, choosing a system that works for you depends on one main thing. How much material do you have? Lots, then you need a compost. A constant supply, then set up a worm farm.