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Thanks for taking the time to visit my blog. Please feel free to make comments at the bottom of each post and tick the reactions boxes. If you have any gardening questions or want advice just post a comment (choose anonymous from the drop down) and I'll write about it. Regards JP.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Make a Worm Tunnel

On the weekends I usually spend time reading gardening books, old magazines or surfing the net for gardening tips and ideas.  Months ago I saw a picture of a lady making worm tunnels for her garden out of plastic pipe offcuts.  At the time I thought it was a great idea, as my worm farm was not keeping up with the constant supply of food scraps that our household produces. This week I decided to try and make a couple, but do you think I could find the original instructions? Then I remembered.  I'm a man...I don't need instructions! The idea is to take a length of drainage piping, drill holes in it, put it in a hole in the ground, put your food scraps in the pipe so worms will enter through the holes and munch on the scraps. The worms help to break down the organic matter, adding nutrients to the soil, and also assist in aeration, which will help with air and water movement through the soil. Ultimately this will give your garden healthy soil for healthy growing plants. Once the worms have worked their magic the tunnels can easily be moved to other areas in the garden to repeat the process. Here is what I did.
Measure a 45cm length of PVC piping.  Drill random holes around the pipe.  I just used the largest drill bit I had.  Make sure you leave a 5 cm section at one end of the pipe hole-free, as this will be above ground.
This is what it looked like.  In hindsight I think it could have done with a few more holes.

Dig a 40cm hole in a spot where you want the tunnel to be. I chose to put mine in between the rows of broad beans I have growing.  The hole will need to be deep enough so that the 5cm "hole free" section of the pipe is just above ground level.
Give the pipe a gentle tap into the bottom of the hole (I used the flat of the spade) to secure it in place. Carefully back-fill the hole so that no soil goes into the pipe.

Put food scraps in the top and push down with a stick. I haven't totally filled mine yet. I want to see how quickly the worms are attracted to the tunnel. It's easy to add more scraps as they become available. The only scraps I wouldn't suggest putting in is onion peel and citrus.

I used old saucers turned upside down with a rock on top to cover the tunnels. Hopefully this will stop the rain filling them up and unwanted animals getting in. The tunnels can easily be pulled out and placed in other areas in the garden once the scraps have been broken down and there is no room left in the tunnel.

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