This talk “Say goodbye to fertiliser costs – worms are the answer!” was filmed at S.A.F.E (Seymour Alternative Field Days) March 2014. Davo Davidson has been experimenting with his compost worms out in the paddock. Now he wants you to help prove his theory: “Davo’s Worm Farms” introduce their latest trials “Field Innoculation” If you want to join the trial he will also supply the worms for you! Contact details below.
Details of the trial with compost worms
Until recently, it was generally accepted that Compost Worms would not survive in the paddock, and needed to be raised in specially prepared beds or windrows stocked with sufficient decaying organic matter to prevent them from wandering off in search of food.
However, the paddock trials we have conducted at our property at Broomfield in Central Victoria have shown that there is a way to Fertilise your paddocks using Compost Worms.
In the past, it had been our normal practice, that once the cows had been removed from the Paddock, we would drag the paddock with a set of old tyres or harrows, to break up the cow pats and to spread the dung evenly over the paddock.
Unfortunately, this practice not only led to much of value within the cow manure being lost through either leaching or oxidisation, it also destroyed the possibility of the compost worm making the cow pat its home and surviving in the paddock.
What we did, was to leave the cow pats in tact, and then to inoculate them (one every ten metres or so) with specially prepared Vermicompost containing live Compost Worms and unhatched worm eggs. We applied the vermicompost by driving up and down the paddock with a potato box of vermicompost on the back of the ute, and my assistant dropping a handful on top of a cow pat as I stopped by it. We worked the paddock in strips approx. ten metres wide.
This was done in the Autumn, after the break when the soil had been sufficiently moistened. The worms were able to survive in the manure, the worm eggs hatched, giving significantly more compost worms per pat, and then they rapidly converted the cow manure in to Worm Castings, a rich source of carbon. Once their job was done, they simply moved to next available cow pat under the cover of darkness.
What then happened was that the native earthworms, ever present, but often hibernating deeper in the soil awaiting suitable conditions in the top soil, re-appeared and commenced consuming the worm castings (rich in healthy microbes. i.e. Bacteria and fungi.) and began a process of taking that organic matter down with them in to their tunnels and effectively spreading it over a much larger area. We estimate that the original cow pat with a diameter of 20cm would produce an area fertilised of approx. 2 metres in diameter.
Considering that Worm Castings generally make available 5 times more nitrogen, 7 times more Phosphorus and 11 times more Potassium than the surrounding soil; this effectively eliminates the need to ever apply NPK fertilisers again.
So, with ongoing good rotational grazing practices, the worms can continually be making available the nutrients required for healthy pasture growth.
For further information, or to arrange a farm visit, contact us at [email protected]farms.com.au or phone Mob. 0418 501 525.
“Organic Growing with Worms” by David Murphy. (Out of Print)
“Holistic Management” by Alan Savory.
“Carbon Grazing” by Alan Lauder (Google it)
|About this DVD “Composting With Worms Made Easy”Once you have a worm farm not only do you have your own compost and fertiliser maker, you also have a ready disposal of all your waste – well most of it anyway. David also states that you are also reducing the affect of global warming by reducing landfill. Keeps your council happy too!Yonke Cane is a neighbour of David and Beth’s who is passionate about sustainable living. She readily took up David’s help to establish a worm farm which she set up using straw bales. It is large enough to take all the household waste and is kept moist with the houshold’s grey water. Her children love it and happily help Yonke in the veggie garden which thrives on worm tea. Healthy too!|
|About this DVD “Compost Worm Secrets Revealed for Easy and Profitable Farming“Compacted soils and rising costs of fertilizers are frequently occurring problems which plague most farmers. Discover the secrets of worm composting with David Davidson and start reaping the benefits of worm castings, worm compost and worm tea for all growers.|