Transitioning from Winter to Spring Worm Composting

Posted on Jan 13 2012 - 1:49am by Mike Lieberman

Winter is the time of year when many raising red worms will find it difficult.

They find their worms are dying off.

This can easily be avoided if you take precautions when raising your red worms.

Seasonal changes affect the way one raises their red worms. When winter arrives we concentrate on keeping our red worms warm. It is much easier when raising red worms to keep a worm bin warm than trying to keep it cool enough during the warmer months.

Raising red worms and transitioning from winter to spring can be relatively simple if you approach it properly. Here are some tips to help you make that transition:

Make sure your worm bin does not have too much moisture. Moisture and heat do not mix when it comes to keeping a worm bin. A soil moisture meter can be purchased at most hardware, home improvement and even discount stores this time of year. A good year round moisture percentage to maintain is 60% to 70%.

Add less green items and more brown items to reduce the heat in your worm bin. Brown (carbon) products consist of shredded newspaper and cardboard for one. These products will not generate nearly as much heat within your worm bin as green products do.

Avoid certain vegetables. As we start to transition from winter to spring avoid melons and vegetables such as cucumbers for a while.

These tips will save you and your worms some grief as the warmer months start to approach.

Please Note: This post was contributed by one of my sponsors, Rainbow Worms. For additional information on raising red worms, connect with Rainbow Worms on Facebook, Twitter or subscribe to their blog.

Image courtesy of Vancour on Flickr

  • Pamela

    I keep my worm bin in the garage all year round-in the summer it’s cooler than being outside, and in the winter it’s much warmer. The garage backs up to the house so it gets enough heat to keep from freezing or killing the worms. It’s interesting that you shouldn’t feed the worms summer fruits during the winter. I eat as seasonally as possible, so I don’t have that type of “worm food” in the winter, but it does make sense!

  • http://www.UrbanFarmAndBeehives.com/ Mil

    “Add less green items and more brown items to reduce the heat in your worm bin.
    Brown (carbon) products consist of shredded newspaper and cardboard for
    one. These products will not generate nearly as much heat within your
    worm bin as green products do.”

    Do I want to reduce heat in my worm bin during winter? I thought I wanted to keep the worms warm. Please enlighten me. Thanks!

  • Kristin Overton

    I’m fairly sure my worm bin has way too much moisture. We keep them inside, under the sink, so I don’t want to add anything that would cause the temperature to increase too much. Any thoughts on what might help to dry it out a bit?

  • http://www.UrbanOrganicGardener.com Mike Lieberman

    As you are transitioning from winter to spring, you are going to want to reduce the heat some.

  • http://www.UrbanOrganicGardener.com Mike Lieberman

    most def. you are lucky to have that space.

  • http://www.UrbanOrganicGardener.com Mike Lieberman

    Adding browns such as old leaves and shredded newspaper.