This activity can be made and brought home if you do not have a garden. With just a few items you can make a worm farm and watch them do their important work right from the comfort of your own home.
Make your own worm farm
You will need:
- Empty 2L plastic drinks bottle
- Craft knife or a Stanley knife
- Small shovel
- Grass clippings
- Kitchen food waste (raw and plant matter only)
- Black or other dark coloured paper
Start by using the craft knife to cut off the top of the plastic bottle where it starts to taper up to the spout. You will not need the spout part of the bottle so can pop that in the recycling.
Cut a piece of black paper to fit all the way around the bottle and all the way up the part you have cut (or just below the top). Set the paper aside. You will need it when you come back inside.
Next, head outside and find a nice patch of damp earth. Use your small shovel to put some of the earth into the bottom of the bottle until you have about an inch of soil in the bottom of your bottle. Pat it down nice and firmly so that when you add the next layer (some sand) it will not filter through. Add a thin layer of sand. Add another layer of dirt, patted down, and continue adding layers of alternating dirt and sand until you have a few inches of the bottle left above the surface of your final layer which should be dirt. Add some grass clippings to the top of your final layer of dirt. Your bottle should now look something like this:
Add some food waste from your kitchen to the top with the grass.
Now, head out to hunt for worms. Where will you find them? Collect a few worms (not too many as this is a small habitat) and pop them in the top of your worm farm.
Tape the paper to the outside of the bottle so that no light is getting in to the ‘worm farm’ from the sides. Light from the top is okay. If you tape the paper to itself rather than the bottle, sort of turning it into a paper tube, it will be easier to peak in at your worms as you can slide your paper tube up and down to bottle to take it on and off.
Now for the hard part, waiting.
Keep taking the paper off the bottle to have a look at what the worms do. What is happening? does the soil change? Does the grass change? What about the food waste?
Only add more food craps once the last lot have gone, chopping them up into small pieces is helpful.
Keep the ground moist. If it is starting to look like it is drying out sprinkle a little water on the surface to keep your worms happy.
When you are finished with your worm farm please return them to the soil outside — they do important work so we need them out there.
Happy worm farming!