Basic Box Bin


Beginner’s Packages:

5-gallon pre-drilled tote bin with 3 oz. worms: $65

10-gallon  pre-drilled tote bin with 4 oz. worms: $70

14-gallon  pre-drilled totebin with 5 oz. worms: $75


All packages Include: Pre-drilled bin with lid,  worms in bed run (measured by worm weight), coconut coir, catchment tray, and the “how to” book: Worms Eat My Garbage by Mary Appelhof.


The CLASSIC starter kit:

Millions of people worldwide have their first experience with vermicomposting in a simple, inexpensive box bin. It can be a container of any kind with holes in the bottom for drainage and holes in the lid for ventilation, elevated above a drip pan. The bin pictured is elevated on two bricks, providing plenty of air beneath the bin and allowing leachate to flow out and away.


All box bins are batch processors, meaning all stages of decomposition occur in one container, requiring removing layers of “fresh” waste, “semi processed waste” and completely processed cast, then replacement of layers to continue processing.

To start a box bin build a thick layer of  moist shredded cellulose material.  Mix in “bed run” (material worms are “packaged” in) to inoculate bedding.   Add worms and food waste, then  cover with a layer of wet fluffy shredded paper.

Feed regularly, at least once a week, under the paper cover.  Add fresh shredded paper to the top and water as needed, ensuring that the cover layer completely covers all your food scraps and is moist.  When watering, add enough so that there is excess coming out the bottom of your system.  If you experience difficulty keeping your cover layer moist, try a breathable cover over the shredded paper.  Kokua Worms jute “Worm Blanket” is a great accessory to help retain moisture.


At least twice a month, feed on top of your cover layer of shredded paper and start a new cover layer.  You are creating internal layers of air pockets, helping your system stay aerobic throughout.

At the end of the first 6 month cycle, the bin is hand-harvested– worms are sorted from the finished cast.  (You may choose to stop feeding for 2 weeks prior to harvesting your vermicast.) Removing the contents of your bin by layers will assist the process, avoiding mixing unprocessed material from the finished cast.  Add fresh cellulose material for another cycle before the worm colony and unprocessed paper & food bits go back into the bin, again by layers.  The finished vermicast goes into the garden, lawn, or potted plants.

The downside is that the semi-annual hand-harvest can be a bit time-consuming and may interrupt your composting cycle during the 2 week pre-harvest break.