How do I encourage earthworms to my raised garden bed?

Q.

Hi Tui, I have brand new raised vege gardens filled with garden mix and sheep pellets. I have a worm farm with lots of composting worms. How/where do I get earthworms to add to the new garden mix. I am of the understanding that the worms in my farm don't last in the garden. I look forward to your answer. Thankyou.

Elizabeth Davis

A.

Hi Elizabeth,

Earthworms and composting worms are different and have different habitats. Earthworms are solitary and live deep down in the soil, composting worms live in groups and closer to the soil surface, have voracious appetites and require warmer temperatures than earthworms. Both break down organic matter and provide rich humus for the soil, the earthworm is better at aerating the soil, compost worms are good at breaking down organic matter. Composting worms are easy to distinguish because they are smaller and red. If your raised garden bed is on soil with no barriers at the bottom such as weed mat or concrete, then keep adding organic matter to your raised garden bed such as compost, pea straw, lawn clippings, sheep pellets, aged saw dust, rotted hay and the earthworms will migrate to your garden bed. Alternatively you can place earthworms into your raised garden bed when you find them, make sure you are continuously adding organic matter between crops.  Tui Team.

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