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Are Composting Worms a Renewable Resource?

Composting is HOT right now! Pun intended. From electronic composters to worm buckets to outdoor piles to rolling compost bins, there are so many ways to compost. Let’s Go Compost is on a mission to make composting free and accessible by upcycling bulk ingredient buckets destined for the landfill and turning them into two-tier composting buckets using Red Wiggler worms. We are partial to our method because it’s almost entirely free to start and doesn’t create upstream or downstream waste (unlike the metal gadgets and new plastic needed to create a fancy and often expensive electronic composting system). Here’s our take on why Red Wiggler composting worms are a renewable resource.

For starters, what is a renewable resource?

A renewable resource is a resource that can be replenished naturally over time, making it sustainable despite consumption by humankind. The need for renewable resources, and the conservation of them, continues to increase as climate change impacts every community around the world. Common renewable resources include wind, water, bamboo, and ocean currents.

What do worms have to do with it?

There are more than 20,000 (!) types of worms in the world. Red Wigglers, known scientifically as Eisenia fetida, are a unique breed of worm that not only thrive in shallow conditions (like our two tier reclaimed 5-gallon bucket system), eat almost their body weight in waste each day, but they also repopulate at an incredible rate. In fact, the breeding cycle of worms is approximately 27 days from mating to laying eggs (also known as cocoons). Each cocoon can hatch up to 20 baby worms, meaning the worms can double in population just about every 60 days (and some studies show they can live up to 3 years under the right conditions). Similar to bamboo, this means that Red Wiggler worms will continue to grow their colony until they reach their limits (be it space or


Worms on worms on worms

Red Wiggler worms will self-regulate their population to match the space of the bin they are in. We recommend having about a cup of worms (250 worms, roughly) per 5-gallon bucket with active waste material in it. After a few months of composting, if you find yourself with more worms than you know what to do with, you can add these extra Red Wiggler worms into a new composting bin, directly into a garden bed, or you can share them with a neighbor (or Let’s Go Compost) to support new composting efforts in your area.

The dirt on renewable worms?

So, are Red Wiggler worms a renewable resource? Maybe not entirely. Unlike common renewable resources like sunlight or ocean currents, if all Red Wiggler worms were depleted, they could not be recovered. However, through home worm composting efforts and good ole’ fashioned sharing, Red Wiggler composting worms are a great, free, renewable resource that help you and your neighbors compost at home for just about free (especially if you’re using a free Let’s Go Compost upcycled worm composting bin).

Let’s Go Compost is a community-led effort to make compost bins free and accessible. We upcycle empty bulk ingredient bins into free, food-safe worm compost bins that are donated back to the community. Click here to get a free compost bin at our next monthly pick up event.


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