Let them Worm their Way into your Garden!
Not all crawlies are bad for your garden. If you are seasoned gardener, you know what we are talking about. Nature’s first gardeners, as they are called, worms are one of the reasons for a healthy garden. So don’t panic when you see something wiggling in your soil. This means you have a healthy soil and your plants actually getting nourished.
As these worms move around in the soil in the garden, they create small tunnels which helps get the air and water to the roots of the plant. Similar to what we do when we till our garden occasionally in order to let it breathe and water.
Almost all soil has earthworms. There are four common types of earth worms; Red worms, Garden worms, manure worms and night crawlers.
The worms eat the organic matter like dead leaves and dirt and after they digest their food, they excrete the worm poo called as castings which is full of nutrients like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus etc. which are all very important for the growth of plants to stay healthy.
Can I add worms if they are not in my garden soil?
Yes, most certainly, you can and you should. To do this though, you probably need some preparation. You can just dump some worms into the soil and hope for the best. One needs to check the right environment for those worms to live there. For that, you need to add some manure, garden compost or leaves and mix it in the soil of your garden and let it mature for a few months at least and then add introduce worms to the soil. Alternately, you can get a garden mix soil which already has all these things mixed in and then introduce worms to it, if you don’t want to wait for months.
How to do it?
Again, you cannot just dump them on top of the soil and assume that they will burrow their way down. For many reasons, primarily, you are creating a treat for the birds. Also, the worms might just go to places, you don’t want them to and will be lost, wasting your time and money.
You need to create a holes in the soils and add some water and compost may be and then drop some worms in and cover it with soil. Do the same thing for as many holes you create for your garden. It’s always a good idea to spread them around in a bunch than all in one place.
What to avoid to keep the worms thriving in the soil?
1.) Worms don’t like disturbance. So, avoid digging. This is possible when it’s flowers but for vegetable beds, you may need to dig a little. Keeping it minimum or as much a needed. The more the worms, the less the need to dig other than when we are planting new plants.
2.) Keep adding mulch for the worms to thrive.
3.) This is very important for your plants as well as worms – No chemical sprays.
Spring is the season when we are actively planting and working in the garden. So, if you haven’t done it till now, this is the time to get into the wiggly territory and introduce some friends for your plants and help them help you in growing a healthier garden.