woman building a worm bin in her garden
Photo: Rob Howard
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Build a Worm Bin

Let worms eat your garbage, and they'll reward you by producing rich compost for your garden. Because worms thrive in a closed container, a worm bin is much less likely to attract pests than an open compost pile. You can buy plastic worm bins, but it's a lot better to make your own, which you can easily do with one and a half sheets of exterior-grade plywood, a few scraps of 2x6, two hinges, and a handful of nails or screws. Line the bottom with bedding of moist leaves or shredded cardboard, add a colony of worms, and faithfully feed them your food scraps. Within a year you can start harvesting compost. Earthworms don't do well in confined quarters, so use red wiggler worms instead; order them online at yelmworms.com

2 sheets plywood: $78
Hardware: $10
1 lb. red wigglers: $25
Total: $113
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