Tomatoes are definitely a family favorite and are used in so many dishes. These ripe fruits are a wonderful food to keep in any household. But do worms eat tomatoes?
Whether your crop has been overly productive or you have bought too many from the market, it is important to know whether your worm bin could make good use out of those rotting tomatoes.
The question as to whether worms do eat tomatoes isn’t a rare one. The answer is yes, worms do eat tomatoes.
As we are cautioned against giving worms too many citrus fruits, due to the acidity, questioning the dangers of tomatoes for our composting worms is only natural.
Whilst they are indeed quite acidic, they are not quite as strong as lemons for example, and are a great food source for your worms.
Do Tomatoes Make Good Worm Food For Vermicomposting?
Tomatoes do make a good food for vermicomposting. Indeed, red wigglers love tomatoes and will happily make their way through them in your worm farm. Most worms will eat pretty much anything decomposing.
Thanks to their moist texture, tomatoes provide a wonderfully damp environment for your worms, much like other foodstuffs such as melons and cucumbers.
That being said, too much of anything can be a bad thing and you should remember to put tomatoes in your vermicmposting system responsibly.
- Feeding tomatoes to your worms in moderation is always a wise move.
- Remember that they need a balanced diet as much as we do, so feed them tomatoes along with other foodstuffs.
- The dampness provided by the fruit is also something of which to be wary.
- Worms need a damp, moist environment, but not wet.
The chances of the decaying tomatoes making the environment too wet for your red wigglers is relatively low, but maybe do consider adding the tomatoes with extra bedding, to absorb this extra moisture just to be safe.
Always test the moisture in your worm composting bin too to ensure it’s at a safe level for the worms.
What kind of worm eats tomatoes?
There are multiple kinds of worms that eat tomatoes.
A common problem for anyone growing tomato plants is having to deal with the fact that many worms like to eat tomatoes en masse!
Worms love to eat through the leaves as well as the fruits themselves. You may have noticed some of the little creatures on your own tomato plants. But which kind of worms specifically?
Here are some examples you may have come across:
- You’ll have seen what is called a tomato hornworm. These little creatures who look more like caterpillars, than typical worms, have a tremendous for eating tomato plant leaves and stalks!
- Loopers (which are green, like the tomato hornworm)
- Armyworms (which are brown ) are also common culprits.
- Earthworms will only usually start eating your tomatoes when they start decomposing…long after we would possibly want to eat them (I hope!)
Do red wigglers eat tomatoes?
Red wigglers do eat tomatoes. Why not add them to your bin feed?
Thankfully, red wigglers will consume almost anything that is organic, from coffee grounds, to banana peels and most fruits and vegetables.
In fact, most of your organic kitchen waste is perfect food for those little creatures, including your tomatoes.
They will happily chow down on some leftover tomatoes from your garden or kitchen, from time to time.
They do not like anything that is too hot and spicy, as they could harm or kill them, but those wonderful fruits will be fine to add to your compost pile.
The amount of water in them will do the pile good, keeping it nice and damp. Not to mention how nutritious they are for us and for the worms!
You would do well to treat your worm bin to the scraps you have laying around. Fruit in general is a good bet, just as long as they’re not citrus.
How do you keep worms from eating tomatoes?
The best way to keep insects from laying their eggs, which become the dreaded plant eating larvae, is by using row covers.
Row covers are a great way to avoid having to spray chemicals on your plants. Chemicals would inevitably harm the plant, the surrounding lifeforms and most likely contaminate the fruit it produces.
Getting rid of those small creatures may seem difficult, but laying row covers over your plants as you plant them, is a great way of avoiding any further trouble.
Under the shelter of the covers, your plants will still have access to sunlight and water, whilst avoiding the different types of creatures that could eventually damage them.