Worm Chronicles, Chapter 1

My Worm Bins are finished

I have finally finished my worm bins and its time to buy some worms. However, I’m not just buy any worms though, I am getting red wriggler worms that are best for composting (also called vermicomposting) in worm bins. I live in a basement apartment without much space. I also have to share the backyard. This means that having a big compost pile is not really plausible for me right now. However, I wanted to have a way to compost so of my kitchen scraps  in a small setting. This is where my worms come into play. These worms will eat the food that I put in for them and on the other side they will produce worm castings (their poop).

These worm castings are very good compost to add to gardens. I started my journey with studying about how to raise worms. I found many different methods and bins to do it in. After doing this research, I took everything that people agreed on as basic truth for right  now. Then I tried to piece together the things that they disagreed on and find what worked and what didn’t work. This is my attempt at raising worms. I will share as I go things that I have learned.

For me it started with the worm bins. I found that a taller narrower bin worked better. It also has to be dark inside so if you use plastic it must be a dark colored one as to keep the light out. The worms will hide from the light, and if it is clear then it will mess with their ability to produce in the bin. I first made a wooden bin and stained it with boiled linseed oil.  I then drilled dozens of holes in the top, sides, and bottom. The bottom I covered with tool so the worms couldn’t get out (even though I don’t think they would. The worms stay toward the top where there food is).


I decided to make two different bins so that if I screwed up my one of them, I wouldn’t have killed all my worms. My second one is made with two rubber containers, one stacked in the other. I drilled holes in the  bottom of this one too. However I cut out bigger holes in the top and glued tool around them to keep bugs out better. Worms need lots of air flow to survive.

A hard lesson learned about responsibility

I have had an experience this last summer that has taught me a valuable lesson about taking responsibility. I have had the attitude for a while that I am an invincible twenty-three year old. I can anything and nothing can harm me. I had even had some close calls that have even reinforced mentality. I am also in the first time of my life with a direct responsibility to someone besides me. I am a husband to a beautiful wife and the soon to be father of a son. i care the most for these people and they depend on me to help take care of them and provide for them.

Last summer I was in St. Louis visiting family and we went to the City Museum there. They had a human sized hamster wheel that you could run on. I started running on it and was getting the hang of it when i decided to show of my invincibility and push it to go faster.

Well, as you can see from the video, it did not turn out very well for me. (Sorry for the bad orientation on the phone). We then procceded to go to the urgent care to get an x-ray. Luckily for me this time, I had no broken bones. I just got a badly brusied shoulder, weakness, and lots of pain. If I had been working a physically demanding job then just this hurt shoulder would have kept me from working for a couple weeks. That would be a couple of weeks that I wouldn’t not only be able to make money, but also not be able to take care of the daily household chores like I need to.

I have come to relize that I need to start asking myself the question “Is what I am about to do worth the potential harm”. I was clearing not thinking of this when I was on the hamstwer wheel. This question for me applies more to just the stupid things that I do. It also applies to the household chores, serivce I do, and recreation.

For example, I know nothing about working with and fixing a breaker box (besides flipping breakers). If it were to go out and need fixing or replacing, the independant and frugal man that I am would attempt to do it myself. This way I would save on money and learn a new skill. However, I would need to ask myself before I attempted it if the benifits outway the potential for being electricuted. The threshold for when something is acceptable to do and when it is to potentially dangerous is different for each person and specific task.

I am not saying that we need to live our lives in fear, too afraid to do anything or have fun. I am just saying that rather then fearing the task at hand, we need to respect it for what it is. If I respect the electicity in the breaker box, I will make sure that I shut down the main power line and use tools to test if the power is live or not. With these simple measures I could do this job without fear of being harmed. Taking responsibility for someone else should only make it so that you respect  more then fear and lean on the side of safty.

My Boxes need Drainage!

This is a picture of some of my almost finished planter boxes

My goal this week is to completely finish my first planter boxes that I will sale and give away. This was a big task so I have been putting every spare minute that I have into finishing them. Last night I was putting in the plastic to protect the wood from water damage.

My original plan was to not put in a drainage hole and to just put rock in the bottom of my boxes. I wanted this so that the water doesn’t drain right through and onto your inside window seal. I only had enough rock from a previous project to put in one box. I put that in and filled it with dirt. I was about to go to my home away from home (The Home Depot) to get more rock when I decided to google what time of rock was best for my purpose.

What I found really surprised me! Every site that I went to said that I was asking for trouble if i didn’t put in a way for the water to drain. This really surprised me. One site called it the myth of putting rocks in the bottom with no drainage hole. After spending way to much time studying this, I made the decision that I have to redesign my boxes to have drainage.

My problem is that I have to design it so that it still looks good, doesn’t get your window sill dirty, and lets the water out. I haven’t come up with a good fix for my boxes yet but I do have some ideas. I went to The Home Depot  and bought some plastic and some silicone sealant and I hope to find a way to piece that all together. Wish me luck! If you have any suggestions leave it below in the comments.