How to Grow Red Wigglers

Overview

Red wigglers are sometimes called the Cadillac of worms because red wigglers are large, hearty, reproduce rapidly and they thrive in worm farms where they are grown. Making a worm farm for your red wigglers is easy and the care and maintenance of your worm farm is, likewise, simple and straightforward. And in just three short months your worm farm can easily double in size. In just a single year your earthworm farm could grow to 16 times its original size.

Step 1

Buy a plastic bin that is approximately 2 feet wide, 3 feet long and at least 1 foot deep. Make sure it has a lid.

Step 2

Drill six 1/2-inch holes in the bottom of the bin for drainage. Drill 24 1/2-inch holes in the lid of the bin for good air circulation.

Step 3

Place a pan to catch any drippings from your worm farm in a warm area out of direct sun. Place four bricks in the pan and set your plastic bin on the bricks. The bricks allow for air circulation under your worm farm.

Step 4

Soak sheets of newspaper in water, squeeze the water from the newspaper and line the bottom of your plastic bin with dampened newspaper.

Step 5

Tear up several sheets of newspaper and pieces of cardboard and dampen. Mix them with an equal amount of peat moss and mix well. Add in three handfuls of garden soil and mix everything together. Make sure the material is damp, but not soaking wet. Put the bedding material into your worm bin which has been lined with damp newspapers.

Step 6

Obtain approximately 200 red wigglers from a local bait shop or from an online source. Pit them into your bin and allow them to burrow their way into the compost you have created. Lay a damp sheet of newspaper on top of the compost to help maintain a good moisture level.

Step 7

Add some table scraps (avoid meat and citrus fruit) to one end of the box and then put the lid on the box. Check every two or three days, spraying the top of the compost liberally to keep the bedding moist (but not too wet), and checking to see if the worms have eaten the food you placed in the bin. Add more food as needed. Do not add more food than the worms consume in three days.

Tips and Warnings

  • After three months you may need to build another worm farm and divide your existing worms into the two farms.

Things You'll Need

  • Red wigglers (200 or more)
  • Plastic tub with lid
  • Drill with 1/2 inch bit
  • 4 bricks
  • Pan slightly larger than your bin
  • Newspapers
  • Cardboard
  • Peat moss
  • Dirt

References

  • MD Dept. of Environment: How to Build a Worm Farm
  • Vermicomposting: How to Raise Earthworms
  • PlanetKids: How to Build a Worm Farm (PDF)
Keywords: grow red wigglers, raising red wigglers, worm farm

About this Author

Larry Parr has been a full-time professional freelance writer for more than 30 years. For 25 years he wrote cartoons for TV, everything from SMURFS to SPIDER-MAN.