Uncertain if my castings have been composted completely...

by Michelle
(Warner Robins, GA)

I've harvested my worm bin a few times, and the castings I introduce to my pots and garden end up sprouting seedlings from the kitchen scraps I've fed my worms. Is there a way to prevent this?

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Feb 18, 2012
Sprouting seeds in Worm Farm
by: Pauly

Hi Michelle,

The castings will look like wet coffee grounds just not as course. They should be free of any remaining compost like castings mixed with bits of paper or vegetation. If the castings look like fresh, moist ground coffee then you have 99% worm castings.

As for the little seedlings...bless their little heart. They just want to be loved :)

You could always wait a little longer to use your castings. This will allow more time for the gestational period and when you see the little darlings in the worm bin, rip their little hearts right out of the cold wet castings say a little prayer and lay them back on top for the worms to eat.

Another method can be to simply remove the seeds before introducing the food to the worms. I know...easier said than done.

Some people will compost their food in the sun inside a black trash bag for a day or two to kill any pathogens and seeds. Temps can get quite hot.

This will also kill beneficial microbes the worms eat but will still be effective.

Try that Michelle,

Feb 25, 2013
Seeds can survive composting with worms

I have a 5-tray worm farm and clean it out about once a year. I got delayed in cleaning one out, and found something growing in it when I got back to it.

like about 50 cantaloupe seedlings, which I transplanted into cups but did not get them into the ground soon enough to get a real crop, but some of the ones in the cups did actually develop fruit.

Pretty good evidence that some seeds can survive, but I'd want to plant them and see what I was growing for free....lol (After all,the seeds were from my kitchen, so it must be something I liked.)

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