I use a simple home made Worm Tea digester and am giving the following details to any one interested in making one. Earth worms convert waste into valuable resources and Worm Tea is the result of straining water through Vermicompost. Organic matter is consumed by worms and excreted as "casts" which are rich in Potassium, Calcium, Phosphorous and nitrogen and is much more water soluble. Water strained through these casts is Worm Tea.
1) A good quality plastic barrel of about 100 litre capacity with a well fitting , but not air tight lid. The bottome of this barrel should be perforated to permit the draining out of water.
2) A second larger barrel inside which the first barrel can be placed. The inner barrel should rest on some suitable support to ensure that water can drain out to the outer barrel.
At the bottom of the inner barrel place a 4 inch layer of broken tiles and bricks. On top of this tile layer place a perforated heavy gauge sheet of polythene. Above the polythene sheet place a thick layer of well dried leaves. The worm medium is placed on top of the leaves. I collect tropical red earthworms; Eiseria foetida, from the jungles and mix the worms and the jungle soil with some good quality compost and dry, moistened farm yard manure. In temperate regions you may have to buy the correct type of worms. The tropical red earthworm is a surface feeder. This completes the digester.
The digester is placed in a shady cool corner of the garden, away from direct sunlight. In the tropics it is importent to avoid over heating. In temperate regions, I would imagine it will be necessary to avoid low temperatures. The permissable temperature range for tropical earthworms is about 60 to 85 degrees Farenheit.
Once the digester is in place feed stock is added at regular intervals. I use kitchen vegetable waste, fruit peelings etc. I avoid all animal waste. Do not over feed as unconsumed feed stock will pollute and even kill the worms. The feed stock should be placed in differrent places on the surfaces. From time to time, as necessary, water is poured in from the top so that the growing medium is moistened. The excess water will seep out from the bottom of the barrel into the outer barrel. do not let the meium dry out. It is equally important not to over water. As the food is consumed, add more food. At the end of the first month or even earlier, the concentrated worm tea can be tapped off the bottom of the outer barrel through a suitable outlet. The concentrated Worm Tea can be sprayed or diluted and applied to the soil. It is great for Bio vegetable boxes and containers.
I have not been able to download a sketch of the digester. Send me an email at email@example.com> and I will email a sketch.
I was reading the newspaper this morning and in the garden page came acros an article of "Radicle Radish" by courtsey of . That was my introduction.
I am from Sri Lanka, a small Indian Ocean island located at the southern tip of the Indian sub-continent. We are a small tropical island, very "agri-friendly", any thing and every thing grows. My work is in commercial agriculture in Tea and Rubber. We are one the worlds largest exporters of Tea. We have large extents of rubber and are the worlds number one producer of solid rubber tyres. In my spare time I am a small (hobbyist) coconut farmer and run a small 20 acre farm. I am also a keen gardner. I am also a keen wild life enthusiast and spend as much time as possible in the jungles. The island is very scenic with high cool mountains, water falls and archeological remains of a civilisation and culture going back over 2000 years.
I would love to answer your questions on the countries agriculture, wild life and tourist attractions. In my next post I will give details of an easy to make "Worm Tea" digester which i hope will be of interest to some of you. Worm Tea is great for your bio crops in the garden.