Garden Worms

Garden Worms

A fertile soil is the basis of good gardening. In the wild, the soil contains just enough nutrients to nurture the plants that grow upon it, so rich soils support different plantlife from poor soils. In hot areas, for instance, dry soils attract succulents and cacti, wet soils attract mighty jungle trees. (Incidentally, the soil in most rainforests is surprisingly thin and quite poor in nutrients - they all get washed away by the incessant rain - which is what makes slashing and burning the rainforest to make bad farmland so pointless, but that's a rant for another day.)

In our gardens, however, the situation is different. We don't always want to grow just those plants that our garden's soil would support naturally. Indeed, in the case of many new homes, the soil left behind by the builders is so bad that it probably won't grow anything well anyway. The answer is soil improvement. Soil improvement can take us down two routes, improving the soil structure and improving the soil's supply of nutrients (fertilising), and as this is the Wiggly Wigglers website you won't be surprised to know that worms can help in both categories.

The worms we use for soil improvement are quite different from those we use to speed up the composting process. Garden worms, or earthworms - Latin name Lumbicus terrestris, are nature's way of bringing fertillity to the soil. Earthworms improve soil structure, they bind sandy soils, yet break up clays. Their burrowing opens up channels which allow plant roots to grow. Their action also helps regulate the water content of the soils they inhabit, draining waterlogged areas and bring needed moisture to dry soils. They clear up fallen leaves and other organic matter, converting it into valuable nutrients, even delivering the resulting compost to precisely where it is needed most! In short, you couldn't wish for a better tool for soil improvement. As a final benefit, any excess earthworms will even make a tasty meal for garden- visiting wildlife, from thrushes to hedgehogs.

As always, if you need any more information just give us a call on 01981 500391 (UK only) and we'll do our best to help.

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