Worried about whether or not worms can munch through peat moss? It’s worth asking the question, particularly if you’re feeling your way around worm farming for the first time ever.
If you own a worm bin and/or vermicomposting system, then you will most likely always be doing your very best to provide the best environment for them.
Thankfully, as you will most likely already know, worms aren’t that fussy!
They will happily eat any of our organic kitchen scraps, as well as eat paper and use it as bedding (including our old newspaper, cardboard, etc.)
They are even great at getting rid of our garden waste, but will worms eat peat moss?
Yes, worms do eat peat moss. It tends to be better as bedding than as food, on the whole, but there’s no harm in your wigglers chowing down along the way.
Technically, your worms will be eating the organic matter that decomposes into the peat and soil, rather than feed on the soil itself.
In nature, worms live among dead leaves, flowers and grass, so why not put some of that to good use and add it to your bin to let your worms deal with it?
They love to spend their time in peat moss in a worm farm. Give them a new bed – clean sheets for our wormmy friends to happily perform their vermicomposting duties.
Is peat moss too acidic for worms?
Peat moss can be easily found in certain gardens, parks or can be store-bought.
However, for many years the greatest source of peat moss was from Canada, so you might be better off buying it from a shop.
As we are warned very early on in our worm farming efforts to not give citrus fruits, too many tomatoes or anything too acidic to our worms, it is only natural to wonder about peat moss.
Well, you will be happy to know that peat moss is perfectly good for your worms! They will happily eat and use it as worm bedding.
If you happen to live in an area where you have easy access to peat moss, then this is a great, natural and cheap way of providing good worm bedding.
Should you not be close to any peat moss in nature, then by all means consider buying it online or in a shop.
There are, however, things to take into consideration before purchasing peat moss.
Although peat moss as a substance is perfectly fine for worms, if you are buying it packaged it is essential that you make sure that it is not mixed in with any fertilizer or any other sort of chemical.
Harsh chemicals that are found in fertilizer and – yes – even peat moss bags – are extremely dangerous for worms and will kill them if they are provided in a high dosage.
When setting worm bedding, it is always best to go as natural as possible.
Worms and red wigglers are very sensitive to the environment around them and it is your duty as an earthworm and/or red wiggler farmer, to make sure that their environment is healthy for them.
They will reward you with fantastic worm castings (poop), which can be used to nourish and replenish your plants and flowers.
Do worms eat other types of moss?
Although you may not have direct access to peat moss, chances are that you have others kinds of moss growing on the trees or stumps in your garden, local park and/or forest.
That would indeed provide a steady and low cost bedding for as long as you may need it. The truth is that there is not much information out there about other types of moss used in worm farms, other than peat moss.
Some have recorded using the moss that they have found in their very gardens, but there is not much published work on the matter.
If you are considering putting some moss in your worm composting bin, then some experimentation may be required.
How to Add Peat Moss into Your Worm Bins
- You should always start by cleaning the moss. Wash it under the tap with some clean water over and over, until the water runs through clean.
- Next, you will want to add a small amount of the moss into one part of your worm composting bin/vermicompost system.
- You will soon see whether or not the worms are reacting well to the moss.
- If they take to it quickly and remain healthy, then the moss should be fine.
- If, on the contrary, they steer clear of that part of the worm composting bin and the moss remains untouched, then you will need to retrieve the moss as quickly as possible and dispose of it back into your garden.
- Do not throw it away as it can be simply returned to the earth.
- If you do find that the moss seems to be going well with the worms and they like it, then you can start introducing more of it into the composting bin.
- Always remember to clean it properly first.
- You might want to add some extra bedding along with it such as shredded newspaper and/or cardboard, to help provide a more balanced environment.
Does peat moss make good bedding for worms?
Peat moss makes for great worm bedding and this is what it’s known for more than as worm feed.
As it happens, peat moss tends to be among the most popular worm beddings along with other material such as horse manure, coffee grounds and coconut coir.
Peat moss is fantastic at retaining moisture, keeping your composting worms environment nice and damp at all times.
Remember that worms breathe through their skin and so a moist environment is essential for their survival.
The moss, either in its fresh form or in more of a powdered form, is also very soft.
This will make a difference to your worms as their skin is particularly fragile.
For example, it is for this very reason that we recommend that you pulverise them into powder before feeding your worms eggshells and introducing them into your worm bin/vermicomposting system, so as to avoid your worms getting cut on the sharp edges.
The moss, however, will naturally provide a very soft environment for the composting worms to move through and will be easy and good for them to digest too.
So, when you are next shopping for your worm bedding, why not give peat moss a try? Remember to always buy a natural one, with no added chemicals or mixed in fertiliser!
You’re going to want to get the all natural stuff – food included – for your worm compost.
You should soon see how your worms react to their new, comfortable and moist bedding, and you will be able to reap the benefits with some great worm castings.
Don’t forget to experiment mixing it in with other worm bedding staples such as coconut coir and shredded paper – see which one becomes your personal preference and gives you the best results.