Worm castings for bedding plants
by Jonathan Schearer
(Wilson, NY, US)
Have another question for you. I was the one who transplanted young basil seedlings directly into the worm castings. The response I received was to mix the castings 50/50 with potting soil and to not use it straight. Well, I checked on the seedlings again and they have not done anything in over a week. They are not dead yet, just sitting in the straight worm compost. I decided to pull out one of the plants and check the roots. The roots are not strong like on the other plants. I took a closer look, and there were many, many tiny red wigglers in the soil base around the plant. They must have hatched out, because they were not there when I seperated the worms from the castings. Anyways, will the baby worms feed on any living part of the plants or root systems? What if I did mix 50/50 worm castings with commercial soil mix that we buy? Will the plants be ok with tiny worms in the plant cell? I don't know what people's reaction would be if they purchased bedding plants from us only to find tiny worms in their plants when they are planting them.
Answer from BigTex Worms:
Worms eat decaying matter but if there is NO other food source, I guess it is possible for them to eat the roots.
I for one would be thrilled to find red wigglers in my plants, it would be a win/win.
But if you are concerned, perphaps you should just fertilize with worm tea instead of using the castings in the starters.