A worm tower is an easy and inexpensive way to increase the yield from your garden – boosting the fertility of your plants, improving the quality of your soil, and even processing organic waste in an effective and earth-friendly way.
The tower is essentially just a worm farm, half-buried in your garden. Through holes drilled in a piece of PVC pipe, worms are free to come and go as they please – letting the worms and their valuable nutrients interact directly with the surrounding soil and plants. The pipe gives you a place to feed the worms a variety of organic matter, so you get to recycle and they get a steady food supply as they convert all that waste into castings delivered all around your garden. And, as the worms burrow through the earth, they aerate the soil.
Worms will benefit from a variety of organic waste, including grass clippings, peat moss, dried leaves, produce scraps, and paper waste – dampened cardboard, rolls from paper towel and toilet paper, paper bags, and even junk mail. When putting food waste into the tower, always cover it with a layer of dead leaves or shredded paper, to avoid filling your garden with the smell of rotting food.
While the worms do require regular feedings, worm towers are a very effective and low-maintenance way you can grow larger, healthier plants. These systems can be incorporated into any type of garden, in an urban centre or even indoors in the dead of winter. All you need to make one are a few items that can be picked up for next to nothing at a local hardware or home and garden store:
Plant the pipe deep enough to cover all the holes, but don’t submerge it too far into the ground. Worms prefer to live close to the ground surface. Once the tower is buried solidly in the surrounding soil, add the damp newspaper and some food scraps – making sure to cover all produce bits with other organic waste to prevent any odor. Then put your worms in their new home, and cover the tower with your terracotta pot. These are heavy enough to withstand gusting wind, and help protect your tower from predators and outside elements.
You can put as many worm towers in your garden as you can maintain with regular organic waste feedings. The worms will process the material at varying rates throughout the year, depending on the temperature and the season. Check every few days to ensure your worms have got enough food, and add whenever necessary.
Not only is the tower beneficial for the environment, but the plants in your garden will thrive from the castings produced by your worms. In only a half-hour, using easy-to-find materials, you can create a fully functioning, easily sustainable fertilization system for your garden – and reap the rewards as your plants grow healthier and happier!
Images Courtesy of: https://sustainabilitybox.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-building-a-worm-tower/