The Benefits of Worm Juice
By now you’ve probably heard of 'worm juice' or 'worm tea'. But in case you’ve never heard of it, worm juice is the liquid that you collect from a worm farm. Some people also call this worm tea but hardcore worm farmers use this term to refer to a potent brew they make by adding molasses to ‘worm juice’ and aerating it with an aquarium pump to increase the numbers of beneficial microbes in the liquid fertiliser that this process creates. The short story is, whether you make ‘worm juice’ or brew up a pot of ‘worm tea’, it can be used as a fertiliser for your garden, and here are some reasons why it’s actually amazing.
It’s the Best Fertiliser you can use (Natural or Otherwise), and it’s free
Worm Juice, also known as ‘liquid gold’, is a magical elixir that provides billions of good microbes such as fungi, and helpful, nitrogen-fixing bacteria to your plants and veggies. You don’t see these good microbes in synthetic liquid fertilisers, so nothing beats this recipe from mother nature. If you use your kitchen scraps to feed your worms you are returning all those extra nutrients into your soil in exactly the right balance as you are harvesting. Win, win, win!
It Makes Your Veggies Grow Huge
Every time someone uses worm juice we’re told they’ve never seen their vegetables get so big. It is the secret of those giant pumpkin competitions, adding extra inches to those 200 kg heavyweights.That’s because worm juice is a liquid supplement for plants. Similarly, by introducing a higher count of good bacteria to your plant’s soil, beneficial microbial activity is immediately kickstarted. Organic matter is broken down more rapidly, helping build good soil structure that increases vital soil aeration, moisture and nutrient absorption and storage, healthier soil and ultimately boosts your harvest of organically grown veggies!
It’s a Natural Insect Repellant
As if that wasn’t enough, worm tea also acts as a natural insect repellant. The tea contains microorganisms which produce chitanase, a digestive enzyme that breaks down the exoskeletons of insects such as arthropods. Additionally, the microbes have disease suppressant qualities too, helping to stop problems such as root rot! Simply spray the worm tea on the leaves of your plants until it is dripping onto and into the soil to give protection from various root and foliar pathogens, as well as the pesky insect pests.
It’s a Sustainable Way to Eliminate Waste
Beyond the benefits of worm tea, worm farming is a fantastic way to sustainably eliminate food waste. Not only are you creating amazing veggies and fruits, you’re also returning the leftovers back to the earth. Whether you buy worm tea or you make it yourself, it’s a beautiful, organic way to fertilise your garden, and it cuts down on the plastic used to create factory-made fertilisers. Triple win, we think.
The Worms Are Kinda Cute
This one’s subjective but some people really end up falling in love with their worms! Worms, just like people, have specific dietary preferences – but contrary to what you may read elsewhere they will eat lemon and other citrus and onion skins provided they are chopped up and mixed with your other kitchen scraps. They’re curious - you have to have tight containers and lids - and they’re amazing at their jobs, teaching you and those around you about the importance of respecting nature’s work. It is one of the very best ways to connect your kids with the good dirt on sustainable living, their food is totally free and they won’t bark at your neighbours or howl all night at the moon. We hope we’ve convinced you of the amazing power of worm juice. If you want more tips, our friend and legend Angus, from gardeningwithangus.com.au, is a great source of advice! We’re currently testing formulas in collaboration with him and circularfood.com to figure out the perfect worm juice for Vegepod users. So stay tuned and happy fertilising in the meantime!