Chinook – Compost

Buying an individual composter: an ecological gesture

You are determined to install a composter on your balcony or in your garden to become eco-responsible and recycle your waste. Here is an overview of what is available on the market and some tips on how to make the right choice based on your needs. Zero waste objective!

How to choose a vermicomposter?

There are all kinds of models of vermicomposters, vermicomposters or vermicomposters (wrongly called “vermicomposters” because worms are not vermicomposites), whose names vary as much as the number of models. Of all sizes, designed in various materials, they can be purchased in garden centres or on the Internet, unless you want to make your own vermicomposter. But beware of worms leaking if they don’t like their home (too much humidity, too much acid citrus fruit, too hot…).

The criteria that should guide the choice of a vermicomposter:

Ergonomics

  • Always have a tap for the tea that settles at the bottom of the tank: it is used to collect this useful juice and to avoid the stagnation of the liquid.
  • Use different trays to collect the ripe compost without flipping the whole box over: remove the lower level filled with the right compost, empty it and put it back on top of the other trays.
  • Choose the right number of floors according to the soil needs of your plants.

The size of the model

  • Choose the format corresponding to the place of installation: there are square, rectangular, round models… It is advisable to take the measurements.


The material

  • Prefer recycled plastic.
  • The vermicomposter must be totally opaque because worms like darkness.

The cost

  • Often high, it could encourage people to make their own vermicomposter. But beware of the waterproofness! Because as soon as the worm doesn’t like it anymore, it goes away. Beware of the invasion in the kitchen. Look ahead in second hand, maybe good deals to do.
  • Beware of unplanned additional expenses. You may also need to buy a limed mixture, a coconut bread, humidification mattresses… and worms.
  • Consider the full price of the installation before deciding. Some brands offer the delivery of worms with the product. The calculation is therefore more honest.

The worms

  • No earthworms! Get potworms from garden centres, on the Internet or from neighbours’ compost. Choose tiger worms (also called tiger worms, manure worms or brandlings) with their real name Eisenia foetida or fetida. They are red with grey or yellow spots and feast on decomposing matter. Another possibility is Eisenia endreï or andrei, the very red “California worm”, which prefers “fresh” materials.
  • Choose the right quantity: for two to three people, 500 g of worms, for four to six people, 1kg, over six people, 1.5 kg of worms.
  • Reminder: their purchase price is usually added to the price of vermicaisse.

The insulation

  • If you want to leave the bin outside during winter, worms that do not like hot or cold weather must be well protected.
  • A good insulation of the model is a start but should not prevent you from ensuring the protection of its inhabitants by completing it with a covering “house”.