Tuesday, March 11, 2008

My new venture: vermiculture or worm farming

After some runaround and voicemail messages expressing my dissatisfaction about receiving the worms before their home, I finally have the Tumbleweed Pet Poo Converter and 1 pound of red worms to live and work in it. I made the decision to get the Pet Poo Converter to eliminate a heavy use of plastic bags in my home: ferrying cat poop from the basement to the toilet on the main floor for flushing. It has worked all right, but if I really want to cut down on my plastic bag use, figuring out a way to eliminate the ferrying (forgive the pun) would be wonderful. I was looking at composters.com and found the Pet Poo Converter. Although many do not recommend composting cat poop for the possible infectious diseases, I have had my cats for over a decade without problems and to prevent issues with toxoplasmosis, I will use the composted poop on nonedible plants.

The Pet Poo Converter would supplement the action of my standard composting unit, which is currently frozen in the back of my house. I have been adding to it, but not much is happening over winter and I do not think I have reached critical mass for really cooking. This way, my plants and trees will have fertilizer and I only need to buy compost for the vegetable garden.

While the Pet Poo Converter is itself a large box of plastic, it is a one-time purchase that should yield many worm castings and compost tea. (Do they call it tea because it steeps?) Both liquid and solid can be used for fertilize. The red worms mailed to me were alive after their five-day trip so I expect some action in the little farm I started. However, it will not happen quickly. Therefore, I will still have to ferry solid waste to the toilet, but hope that the worms will adapt to their new home and take on their task with gusto.

For more information on vermiculture, getting started with indoor (or outdoor) worm composting or to order a Pet Poo Converter yourself, visit the following web sites:

I will report on my progress to get the worms and cat poop to work together in harmony and see how this whole process comes together. (And maybe get over my girly reaction not to touch the worms.)


  1. Now that it's been a few months, how is your composting going? We just started up this weekend - one bin for our food waste and another for the pet waste. I am also squeamish about the worms, but luckily my husband is handling that aspect.

    Glad to have found your blog. We're also in the Midwest. Off to check out more of your posts.

  2. Thanks for commenting! Actually, it seems to finally be going well. I think I lost quite a number of red worms (we had a long, cold winter), but they seem to be doing pretty well now. The cat poo is disappearing more rapidly now and I think I need to harvest both the bedding and the liquid in the bottom soon. Good luck on your venture. Hopefully, you can be up and running sooner than I.