Environmentally Friendly Earthworm Success…

To go green can refer to many different ways you can choose more environmentally friendly behaviors over those that are less environmentally friendly. Going green can mean baby steps, where you gradually replace a few things you might do on a regular basis, with other things you can do that won’t cause such debt to the environment. Sometimes an individual or companies and organizations make a choice to go green in very large ways, by replacing a number of systems or behaviors with ones that will either be helpful, or at least not harmful, to the planet.

Red Wrigglers

a handful of red wrigglers – ready to be put to work

Here at Milkwood Manor and Lemon Grass Seaside Restaurant we are doing our bit for the environment in the form of earthworm farms. And our little Red Wrigglers are doing exceptionally well, we might add…

The day our worms arrived

The day our worms arrived – their beds were already made…

Approximately half of all household waste is organic, and so too the waste from the restaurant. Most of this waste can be recycled through composting – turning waste materials into a rich soil supplement for use in our gardens.

Worms break down and eat a lot of organic matter and excrete it as casts (vermicasts, or ‘worm juice’). Verimcasts are richer than many fertilisers (the casts contain 5 times more nitrogen, 7 times more phosphorous and 12 times more potassium than the soil) and are better than the same commercially available chemicals derived from petrochemicals.

The worm farms

Here are our worm farms, conveniently next to the water tanks and greenhouse.

“Worm tea’ or ‘worm juice’ is similarly high in nutrients and is prized as a liquid plant food. Worms prefer temperatures of 18-23 °C, although they can tolerate 10-30°C. It is best to place your worm bin (or worm farm) in a shady spot. This could be in the garden, on the porch, garage or deck. It is very simple to keep a worm bin – they don’t need to be walked, and they don’t need feeding that often, so you can go away on holiday and not take them with you! Should you wish to bring them along on your holiday to us, we can happily put them up with their relatives in our hospitable worm farms. and they eat restaurant scraps…


even in winter these beans grow strong thanks to the “worm juice”

Are you concerned?

In many areas the land allocated to waste disposal is rapidly filling up. Much of the land used for waste disposal cannot be reused in the future because of contamination. Landfills produce a toxic liquid, called leachate. Leachate is a mixture of organic acids, battery acids, dissolved chemicals and rainwater. It can contaminate surrounding land and waterways.

 By worm farming, not only can you help to reduce the amount of waste that goes into landfill but you can also help to reduce contamination and greenhouse gases.

 Did you know?

  • Worms will eat most of your kitchen waste and turn it into a high-quality fertiliser.
  • Earthworms breathe through their skin and although an earthworm looks as simple as it is, it is a omplex creature astounding yet fully functional circulatory system, calciferous glands for neutralizing and digesting food
  • It has the organs of both a male and a female which allows it to reproduce on its own, a crop and gizzard with coarse sand matter to aid in grinding food.
  • Worms can eat equal to it’s weight in food and may even be made to eat more given the desired conditions.
  • Worm population in a well-maintained worm farm will double every 2-3 months and given the right conditions, adult worms can produce up to 12 offspring per week.
  • If there are more than 1 million worms living in a hectare of soil, they could make 100 tonnes of castings. These same 1 million worms burrowing into a hectare of soil can create a drainage system equal to 1.2km of 15cm pipe