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Vermicompost: Types, Methods & Precautions to be Taken While Making Compost

Vermicompost is organic waste that has been turned into manure by worms. Vermicomposting can be done for personal usage, supplemental revenue, or business purposes.

Sonali Behera
Vermicompost is a stable, fine-grained organic manure that enhances the physical, chemical, and biological qualities of soil
Vermicompost is a stable, fine-grained organic manure that enhances the physical, chemical, and biological qualities of soil

Vermicomposting is a technique for creating enriched compost using earthworms. It is one of the simplest ways to create high-quality compost from agricultural waste. Earthworms eat biomass and expel it as worm castings, which are digested remains. Worm castings are often referred to as "Black gold." The castings have qualities that restrict harmful bacteria and are rich in nutrients, chemicals that promote growth, and good soil microflora.

Vermicompost is a stable, fine-grained organic manure that enhances the physical, chemical, and biological qualities of soil. It is very beneficial for growing crops and for nurturing seedlings. Growing in popularity as a key element of an organic agricultural system is vermicompost.

Types of Vermicomposting

The amount of output and composting architecture influences the different forms of vermicomposting. Small-scale vermicomposting is carried out to satisfy individual needs, and farmers can produce 5–10 tonnes of vermicompost each year. While large-scale vermicomposting is carried out on a commercial basis and produces between 50 and 100 tonnes of organic waste each year.

Methods of Vermicomposting

Vermicomposting can be done in several ways, but the bed and pit processes are the most popular.

Bed method: Composting is done on the pucca or kachcha floor by constructing an organic-mixture bed that is 6 by 2 by 2 feet in size. It is simple to maintain and use this technique.

Pit method: It is simple to maintain and use this technique. Composting is done in pits that are 5x5x3 feet in size and made of cement. Thatch grass or any other locally accessible material is used to cover the structure. Due to inadequate aeration, water plugging at the bottom, and higher production costs, this approach is not chosen.

Safety Precautions for Vermicomposting

There are many things that need to be considered in vermicomposting. This is especially true as earthworms are very delicate. Any slight modification to the prospering environment would impair their capacity for conversion. The following are the warning signs:

Compost Ingredients: The compost ingredient must only be organic. It must be free of substances like fragments of glass, stone, ceramic, plastic, etc.

Loading: Vermicompost heaps need to be loaded with the appropriate amount. It shouldn't be overloaded because doing so leads to gas buildup and temperature rise. This would have an impact on their population and growth.

Drainage Channel: To prevent water from building up around the vermicompost heap, drainage should be provided. It is crucial to remember this throughout the rainy season.

Addition of Acidic Things: It is best to stay away from acidic substances like citrus. Because these acidic compounds alter the pH balance of the compost, they should only be put in tiny amounts.

Water Stress: The worms can be killed by both a dry spell and an excessive amount of water. Therefore, throughout the summer, the compost pile has to be watered every day. Every other day throughout the winter, the beds must be moistened.

Covering the Beds: Tarpaulin or plastic sheets are not permitted to be placed over the vermicompost beds. This might cause gases to build up inside the bed and raise the temperature there, both of which could be harmful to earthworms.

Pest protection: Earthworms are not susceptible to any specific diseases. However, pests like rodents, termites, birds, ants, etc. must be kept away from them. Before the heap is filled and worms are added, the vermicompost site is sprayed with 5% neem-based pesticide to protect it from rats, termites, and ants. To shield the worms from pigs and birds, the mound might be covered with a net.

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