Vermiculture Tuesday - Adding a Working Tray

This morning I added a second tray (called a working tray) to my Worm Bin 360. The first tray (now called a processing tray) is full to the top and I desperately needed to get rid of some rotten lettuce we've been keeping around just for the worms. 

For the second tray I created several layers for the worms to lounge around in and munch on. One of the key components is the coir - or coconut husks. The coir came compressed so I had to fluff it up with some H2O. It expands to about 4-5 times its size.  I let the coir absorb the water while I added a base later to the tray.

My base layer is food waste. I had three different kinds of rotting lettuce, some old/sprouting garlic, some pepper scraps and some Brussels sprout leaves. This picture actually makes the food waste look like a yummy salad, but trust me, it was gross! Oh, and I threw some green tea leaves in there too.

Then I added the fluffed up (I hate the word moistened) coir.

And about 1/2 cup of pumice. The pumice does exactly what it says on the label. It adds additional air space to the mix, prevents matting and helps control moisture.

I had some dried egg shells left too, so I crushed those up and tossed them on.  Egg shells are a "healthy snack" for worms! :)

 The worm salad ends up looking like this, but there's a final layer to add...

and it's wet, shredded newspaper. 

To top it off I added 4-5 layers of wet newspaper. This helps keep everything in the box adequately moist(ened).

Then it was off to the basement to plop it on top of the first tray and cover it up! I've told myself not to check on it for about a week. We'll see if I can wait that long...


I had some other Worm Bin chores to complete today, but they weren't as glamorous so I'll spare you the funky details. Let's just say it's sad to see some of my little buddies die (underneath the working tray... which is now the processing tray).

What did you do today? Any fun projects on the docket? We got blessed with another round of snow (Storm Saturn?!) so we're pretty much in for the whole day - being lazy.

Now that this entry is done I'll think I'll grab a Starbucks and catch up on some reading. :)

Til we meet again for Wordless Wednesday!


  1. I've maintained worm bins for several years and have never added pumice. Do the worms eat or does it break down on its own? I always end up with a lot of fabulous compost. I don't add coir either. Mine get a ton of kitchen waste and The Washington Post. They are partial to the Style section. :o)

  2. Hmm... to be quite honest, I'm not exactly sure. I've never seen them snacking on or wriggling around in the pumice. It always seems to be left over and mixed in with the castings, so I don't _think_ they eat it... but, I am new at this. I do add crushed eggshells every week and I know they eat those; keeps their digestive system healthy - so my booklet says.

    I keep my bin indoors and have recently gotten some other "digesters" in the bin; pot worms and white mites. I hate it. They give me the heebeegeebees! I know they are readily found in most bins, but I'm still grossed out! They give me nightmares! :p





Sarah Brackney is R&S Garden. A gardening fiend. She is no expert, she just gardens. Her gardens are her art. And yes, she has weeds in her garden; she just chooses not to show them to you. Thanks for visiting.