There are worms and then there are worms. When my Grands come to visit they know that I always have a jar of worms in my kitchens….gummy worms that is! They love checking out to see what new candy might be in Mimi’s candy jars. And I have found that worms are very important to have at my house. Not only these candy worms for them to enjoy, but real worms for my yard!
Growing up I was a girly girl and the idea of worms really upset me! I would run the other way if anyone pulled out a worm to show me, but earthworms are a staple that is necessary for porous, nutritious soil. So as an adult I now do all that I can to produce more worms for my yard. This week as I have dug up old flower beds to rework them they made me think a lot about worms.
Some areas were loaded with worms and some barely had any worms at all in them. Generally when I find a worm in my yard, I pick them up and take them to either my garden boxes or to the closest flower bed. There are many benefits to having lots of worms in your soil.
When you water your plants in either your garden or your flower bed it is very important to remember the worms living in your soil. So don’t just water the plants, water the dirt surrounding your plants so the whole bed is moistened. Worms like nice damp soil – not too wet and not too dry.
Soggy soil after a heavy rain will make them come to the surface to get air and too dry will make them have a hard time making their tunnels. Earthworm tunneling is important to your soil because it will add air to your soil and improve water infiltration by aerating it. Earthworms will fertilize your soil by eating and digesting organic matter such as dead roots, leaves, grasses, and manure that is found in your soil. They then excrete something called “castings.” These castings are rich in nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus. Plant growth requires these key minerals to produce lush greenery and flowers that thrive! These minerals help create healthy soil and are important to organic gardening.
Worms also improve drainage and keep your yard from being a soggy mess when it rains a lot. They enhance the porosity of your soil. Some tunnels go deep down into your soil and can remain there for a long time even after the worm dies. These tunnels or burrows that they make can also minimize surface water erosion.
When I dig up my soil to rework a bed or I plant a new flower, I mix into the soil some grass clippings, dead leaves and some cow manure to help feed the worms living in the soil. The worms will break down these things in your soil that your plants need for growth. This feeding will also increase the number and the size of the worms in your soil. You will have lots of nice big worms!
If you want to go into survivor mode you can also eat worms (slight gag here on my part). Earthworms are considered a wiggling super food. They are loaded with protein, high levels of iron and amino acids which help your body to break down food and helps repair body tissue. Worms also have minerals in them such as copper, zinc and manganese. So, if you get really hungry they will do your body good.
Worms are actually a staple for most birds. During this egg hatching season you will see many birds searching in the dirt of your garden or flower beds in search of juicy worms to take to their little baby birds back in their nests hidden away from our eyes. Worms are another interesting connection with birds and flowers as we “Look at the birds of the air…” Matthew 6:26.
My photos may be viewed & “LIKED” on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest - “Birdie of Mississippi”.
E-mail: email@example.com - Read my Blog @ http://www.birdieofmississippi.blogspot.com