If you are interested in the magical process of turning food waste into natures’ gold, try vermi-composting. This is a great project for kids and yields awesome results for plants.
The “sciencey” part:
Worms do not actually eat food as much as they eat the bacteria that breaks down the food. They do injest the food to process the bacteria and in the process, the food is broken down into just the right size for good soil and meanwhile the enzymes in the gut of the worm provide the magic we are looking for with our plants.
Quick DIY worm bin:
To start you’ll need:
Two plastic totes (with one lid)
Drill with 3/8 bit (or so)
A few pounds of cardboard torn up
A pound of fresh vegetable scraps.
A pound of red wrigglers (eisenia fetida) Garden leaves (optional)
Drill 20-30 holes at the bottom of one of the totes.
Put the “holey” tote inside the other one.
Place your cardboard in the bottom of the “holey” tote and wet down the card board enough so that it is mushy. This may be best done in a sink or bucket of water first.
Place the worms in a pile on the cardboard and the food on top of the worms.
Then either place another batch of cardboard or leaves on top.
THATS IT! Wait for about 60 days, feeding only once in a while (once a week perhaps) but don’t allow the food to be fully processed before adding more, this will cause a crash and boom cycle. Once the worms have laid cocoons and the babies are born in your bin, you will start to see the food turn into castings much more quickly. The new worms will be almost 80% more efficient at consuming the scraps from your bin compared to the transplanted worms.
Once all the food is consumed and has turned black and sticky, not gooey, then put another “holey” tote on top of the first one. Make sure the new tote has full contact with the old material so the worms can crawl up to find your next source of food in the new tote.