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View Full Version : Worm Composting (Vermicomposting)



kwanfan1818
09-06-2010, 04:23 PM
Has anyone had experience with worm composting indoors in an apartment or house kitchen (not just in a basement)?

From what I've read, it is possible to have odorless worm composting indoors if:

1. Meat, dairy, and garlic are not added only (other) vegetable, fruit, coffee grinds and filters, tea bags, and egg shells
2. The food is added under the bedding (newspaper, sawdust, chipped cardboard, etc.)

and that the worms are happy if they have egg shells and plenty of bedding.

I'm trying to find out how odorless "odorless" really is.

BittyBug
09-06-2010, 04:32 PM
I've done it, and if you do what you listed, it truly is odorless. We had ours on a sun porch in our apartment, and it never smelled.

It's a fascinating process, and you'll be amazed at how quickly the worms can devour stuff. I remember putting in melon rinds one day and the next day all that was left was the thinnest of exterior skins.

kwanfan1818
09-06-2010, 04:35 PM
Thank you so much!

I read that you don't need a pet sitter for the worms, but at that rate of consumption, maybe I'd leave a bit more scraps if I were going away for a week.

manleywoman
09-06-2010, 04:53 PM
Ours is odorless.

orbitz
09-06-2010, 05:17 PM
Can I ask why you would want to do composting when living in an apartment? Does your apartment have a small backyard that you can garden with?

kwanfan1818
09-06-2010, 06:20 PM
Can I ask why you would want to do composting when living in an apartment? Does your apartment have a small backyard that you can garden with?
No, there's only a narrow strip of grass between the sidewalk and the building. The City of Vancouver uses a contractor for apartments in the West End and South Granville/Kitsilano neighborhoods, and yard waste/leaves/composting material is not part of the service.

I was intrigued by their suggestion of worm composting for apartments; they have a limited number of discounted kits and a one-hour mandatory workshop for which I'll sign up as soon as I'm back home.

BittyBug
09-07-2010, 12:15 AM
Can I ask why you would want to do composting when living in an apartment? I don't know why kwanfan is exploring this, but for us, we didn't have a garden, we just liked the idea of diverting waste from landfills. Plus it's kind of cool. (And your regular garbage will smell less, too, because the vegetable matter that would become rank while decomposing is instead eaten by the worms.)

orbitz
09-07-2010, 01:02 AM
I don't know why kwanfan is exploring this, but for us, we didn't have a garden, we just liked the idea of diverting waste from landfills. Plus it's kind of cool. (And your regular garbage will smell less, too, because the vegetable matter that would become rank while decomposing is instead eaten by the worms.)

But what do you do with the compost? It builds up if you don't remove it, right?

LilJen
09-07-2010, 02:12 AM
I can't help but think of this song. . . :)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsQ4CxgZ0xI

kwanfan1818
09-07-2010, 02:43 AM
But what do you do with the compost? It builds up if you don't remove it, right?
My old neighborhood is gardener central, and I will have plenty of takers :)

Artemis@BC
09-07-2010, 07:23 PM
Hi kwanfan, I took the same Vancouver city-sponsored workshop before I started my worm bin -- definitely worth it for the the info, plus of course access to the greatly discounted bin & worms.

Mine is completely odourless. I do put in ground eggshells (they need the grit) but other than that it's only fruit & veg. The only slight problem I've had is with fruit flies, but you get that anyway in the spring & fall, plus the workshop comes with a "recipe" for a great fruit fly cure.

I had originally planned to keep the bin on the balcony, but would have had to build a shelter for them since they don't do well in direct sunlight. So I ended up keeping the bin inside, and no probs.

My worms have done so well in the 15 months I've had them that I'm now looking to divide the colony. I have a friend who might be interested; failing that I'll try to sell them on craigslist or kikijiji. Failing that ... freecycle I guess.

kwanfan1818
09-08-2010, 12:25 AM
Thank you so much, Artemis@BC. I'll pay lots of attention to the fruit fly cure :)

ETA: And thank you for the heads up about freecycle in Vancouver (BC)!

LilJen
09-08-2010, 02:33 AM
Would love fruit fly cures. . . finally bought a bona fide compost bin, to replace the badly located one I'd built years ago. Flies EVERYWHERE when I open it up to dump something in!