Worm Castings Make Great Garden Fertilizer
Most avid gardeners are aware of the importance of having an abundant population of earthworms in their soil, but few understand just how vitally essential they are to the entire microbiome. Without the tireless burrowing activities of worms that result in superior topsoil loosening and aeration and their deposition of excreta known as casts, garden soil would be excessively compacted and devoid of fertility. This tunneling action has the added benefit of opening areas for plant roots to expand into, as well as carrying nutrient-rich surface litter down into the subsoil to extend garden fertility even further.
As earthworms continue to consume organic matter, the soil in their wake becomes granulated with lots of soil enhancing casts. Since the typical worm produces their own weight in casts per day, you can easily see how having a large number of these creatures present in your garden will result in vibrant, healthy crops. A common misconception about earthworms is that they add nutrient content to the soil through their digestive process, by converting chemicals and minerals in the humus they eat. What actually occurs is that nutrients such as nitrates, phosphorus, and magnesium are "liberated" from the organic debris, and rendered bio-available to plants. Thus, the most important task they perform is not the creation of nutrients, but the widespread dispersal of them over the entire garden space.
If you work a large volume of compost and/or aged manure into your garden soil, you will consequently be rewarded with a garden that is teeming with earthworms, and is ready to provide a healthy boost to any plant under the sun!
Worm Castings, also known as vermicast, are produced from earthworms and is a form of organic fertilizer. Essentially, it is the waste from the earthworms. Their waste can create a great soil enricher because they eat through compost. Using worm castings will be sure to help add nutrients to any soil. It will also help to keep certain unwanted pests away that feed on plants and in turn, can damage them. Using this will help with soil aeration as well as drainage. It will also improve water retention. Typically, this can be used on about any plant. This fertilizer can be applied around or even directly on to the plants and will not cause them to burn. Other ways this can be used would be as a side dressing, top dressing, or even be worked into the soil before planting. Using this in your garden will be sure to provide a healthy soil for plants to grow.
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