Monday, July 18, 2011

Growing Worms In Hot Weather

There is a record heat wave across the country.  Maybe it's time to talk about hot weather, what it means to your worm farm, and steps you can take to minimize any harm to your worm population.

Problems Growing Worms In Summer

Heat kills worms.  If it doesn't kill them, it can make them sick, slow them down, make them crawl. So what steps can you take to keep your worms cool during hot weather?
  • Make sure you keep your worms moist.  A a matter of fact, keep your worm bedding somewhat wetter than normal.  Careful now.  Not too wet, but a little wetter.  The moisture keeps the bedding cooler, which keeps your worms cooler.
  • Never, ever let your bedding get too dry.  As the bedding drys out, it gets warmer.  Heat isn't the only thing that kills worms.  If the bedding gets too dry, the worms dry out, too and that will kill them just as dead.
  • Make your worm bedding deeper.  It will dry out slower and also gives the worms a cool place to retreat from the heat.
  • Keep your worm beds out of the sunlight.  Any sunlight hitting your bed will heat it up quickly.  Put up extra sunshade of some kind if there is a chance the sun may hit the worm bed.
  • Don't over feed.  Excess food can heat up more quickly during hot weather,  further heating up your worm bedding.  You can always add more food if it gets eaten up too quickly.
  • Keep an eye out for more hatch-lings.  The warmer temperatures brings about more egg hatch-lings and you could have a bed full of young worms overnight.  These extra babies can drive your bigger worms over the top.
  • Watch out for mites and flies.  The record heat can bring on record pests.  Mites can overtake your bedding in short order and flies are the bane of summer.  They can lay their eggs in your worm  food.  Keep a landscape cloth over your bedding to prevent the flies from getting in the food and bedding.
Hot weather can be a worm killer, so be every vigilant during these "dog days" of summer.

Worm Farm Resources:

Red Worms and European Nightcrawlers:  These are the most popular worms to grow.
VermaPlex®:  Add to your worm bed and as you feed to eliminate mites.  Makes worms grow bigger, too.
How To Worm Farm:  More useful information about worms in hot weather and much more.

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