Build Your Own Worm Tower

Let your worms fertilize your garden for you.

We all want to make gardening easier. Well, why not let some little red composting worms do some of the fertilizing for you. You can make this affiliate links noticeworm tower and let your hungry worms make wonderful fertilizer right in your garden. All you need are a few simple supplies from your local home improvement store and a handful of worms. It’s that easy, and I’ll show you how.

A worm tower is easy to make. Place it right in your garden. Let the worms do the work for you.

First Build The Worm Tower

This is all you need to build your own worm tower. Make your garden work for you.

All you need is a 2-foot section of 4″ PVC pipe. (This is a 10′ pipe, it will make 5 towers.) It already had some of the holes in it. But I added a few more. Also, you need one male clean-out cover and one female threaded adapter.

1. Drill* 3/4″ holes in the pipe for the worms to crawl out.

2. Use a Rubber Mallet*
and pound the end cap on the 4″ PVC pipe.

Make your own Worm Tower and let those little red wigglers fertilize the garden for you.

Next Dig Your Hole

3. Dig your hole. Make it deep enough so that only about 2 inches of your tower sticks out above ground. A post hole digger* makes this quick work.

Dig your hole for your worm tower right in your garden. Let those little worms fertilize the garden for you.

Place Your Worm Tower In The Ground

4. Put the worm tower you just built in the ground and fill it in loosely with dirt around it. You don’t want to pack the dirt. The bottom is open to the ground. Yes, that is correct. You want the worms to crawl out. They will come back if you feed them.

A worm tower is easy to make. Place it right in your garden. Let the worms do the work for you.

Now For The Worms

5. Put in some wet bedding. Shredded news paper works well. So does peat moss or just grass clippings.

6. Next add a handful of worms
.

 

Place a handful of Earth Worms in your worm tower to get it started.

Next, You Need To Feed Them

7. Don’t forget. They like all the trimmings from your kitchen vegetables.

Your worms turn your veggie scraps into AMAZING Fertilizer!

Put The Scraps Right In The Hole

You need to feed them every few days.

Feed the worms in the Worm Tower and they will turn it into fertilizer right in your garden!

Put The Top On

8. Don’t forget to put the top on your worm tower. You need to keep the rain and critters out. You don’t want your “friends” to drown.

Make this easy Worm Tower and let the worms eat your veggie scraps and turn it into fertilizer right in your garden.

Now Let Your Worms Work

They will eat what you feed them and spread the fertilizer they make throughout the garden. They also leave their tunnels and that loosens the soil leaving places for air, water, and roots. The worms eat plant residue that falls to the ground and they turn the grass clippings and leaves that you built your garden with into worm castings (fertilizer). They are a garden’s best friend, making your plants healthier so they can produce more abundantly for you. Healthy plants can also ward off disease and pests easier. Which makes you, the gardener, happier and healthier too.

Keep the worms happy and they will work very hard for you.

Here are some products you might be interested in: Thank you for your support.

 

Worms are amazing creatures, their amazing contributions to your garden doesn’t stop here. Worms can even be used to bio-remediate contaminated soil, reducing heavy metals!

I want worms in my garden. How about you?

While you are here you might like to check out raising worms, Build million dollar garden soil, or plan a well-planned garden.

And Have a Ducky Day!

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48 responses to “Build Your Own Worm Tower”

  1. Very interesting idea – I have horrible soil, a thick dead layer on top and lots of grey clay. I have not started the garden side yet, but would a few of these towers in the lawn (low enough to not catch the mower) help revive the soil so even grass can grow?

    • Keith, I don’t know if this would work in this situation. Worms do need at least decent soil to start with and plenty to eat. You might start with aerating the soil and spreading it with compost or a light mulch.

  2. Hi There,
    I built a worm tower to your instructions. I have a raised garden with out access to worms from the ground, hence the worm tower. During the summer months the worms ate a lot of scraps, however now in winter, they do not appear to eating very much if any at all. Do worms hibernate? At any rate it got pretty cold here in Delaware so maybe that hurt the worms. Any suggestions/comments?
    Also do the worms go out into the garden or just stay in the tube. If the stay n the tube is there any need to empty the castings from the tube?
    Thanks for your help.
    ED

    • Ed,
      You are right, they will be much more plentiful in the summer. A worm will freeze in the winter as they are made mostly of water. They actually dig down very deep, below the permafrost, sometimes as much as 6 feet! And yes, they do hibernate. In the spring you can start feeding them again. You can clean out the tower and use the castings as you wish. But they do crawl all through your garden depositing along the way and making the soil nice and aerated. They are amazing creatures.

  3. Hi – will be moving into a condo with balcony and wondering how small/narrow the PVC could be for me to put into the planters with my plants. Of course, I want it large enough to get the food scraps in, but not so large it takes up all the room in the planter. Any suggestions on the minimum size of the PVC?
    Thanks so much! I’ve been trying to figure out how to continue to compost and garden on the future balcony.

  4. Can I use Trip Wall pipe? It’s half the cost as the solid PVC and has some holes already drilled; is thinner than the PVC and is has a black lining?

    • As long as it is made of a material that is safe for your garden, you can use any material you wish. Use your imagination!

  5. I love the idea of the towers. How do you harvest the castings when it is in a narrow tube in the ground?

    I will be using my tower to improve soil, but would like access to the castings for other projects.
    Thank you

    • You don’t harvest the castings. the worms deposit them directly in your garden. No work for you except to feed them.

  6. I was building a worm farm for the wiggle worms to release them once in a while, but this method sound best! Thank you. If I want to raise them to sell, would I need a certificate?

    • That depends on where you live. Check with your county government and/or your extension service. One of them should be able to give you the answer.

  7. Does this method generate heat like a larger compost pike would? Asking because im wondering if this method would work to help naturally heat a greenhouse.

    • No, it won’t. For compost to heat up it needs volume. Most recommend 3’x3′ piles to get a decent heat. This type of composting isn’t done by microorganisms, it is done by worms.

    • PVC is what most houses use for their water pipes. I can’t say for sure it is 0 leach, but, if there is a minute amount, you will get far more from water pipes than this little tower in your garden.

    • There is no set amount. I have 4 – 20′ rows and I put one tower in each row, staggered. That fits my needs. Adding the towers and adding a lot of organic material has made a world of difference to the life in my garden.

  8. Do you think a five gallon bucket with a screw top lid would work in place of the PVC? Still with holes and the bottom cut out?

    • Absolutely. 2 feet should work. I have raised beds I have created in the lasagna bed method and most of my tower is in the light and fluffy raised area. Worms and lots of mulch/compost will help that hard stuff.

  9. If you are gone for a while do they return when you feed them?
    Also if you have a regular worm bin, what do you do when you are gone for a week or two?

    • Actually, worms are one of the easiest “pets” for going on vacation. Just feed them a little extra before you go. Instead of giving them ground up food, make it large chunks, Maybe even a whole ear of corn. That will last them a couple of weeks easy, maybe even a month. Just make sure there isn’t too much of very wet food like Mellon or tomatoes. (which, inside, can attract fruit flies.) Also, make sure, in the worm bin, they have adequate water. Enjoy your trip!

  10. Great idea. It’s one of those times when you read something and it’s one of those a-daaa moments and you wonder “why didn’t I think of that”. I’ll be giving this a try when the ground thaws n spring is closer. Great idea thanks for the heads up.

  11. This is about the third time I’ve read you article. I’m going outside right now to get started. My question is, i put the tower right in the garden? Like in the middle or around the edges? I think i have enough pipe for at least 3. It’s a small garden. I cant have too many can I?

    • Yep. Right in the middle of a row. And the only way you can have too many is if you don’t leave room for the plants.:) Send pictures I would love to see how yours turns out!

  12. Such a great idea!! I wonder if it will work in a sandy poor soil. We live in the woods surrounded by pine trees. The previous owner added 50 cm of good soil. But if we dig deeper we can see sand. Do you think it’s worth trying anyway? Would you put worms inside the tower? Thank you!

    • I have sandy soil and had no worms in the soil because it was so bad. Adding the worm tower (and yes worms from my worm bin) with a little cut grass and vegetable scraps. By adding a lot of grass clipping to the surrounding soil. (see: lifeisjustducky.com/garden-soil/) Within a year there were worms all over. Worked like a charm. 🙂

  13. I live in the north…..and compost. Love this idea for the raised gardens, but wondering about winter. Should you just stop “feeding” until the following spring? Thanks!!

    • Yes, that is probably best. In the spring, add a handful of worms and start feeding again! Happy Gardening.

  14. Thank you Mary for sharing, I’ve been doing this old school for say, raising worms in a old refrigerator , taken out some of the fertilized soil and spread it on my garden, then put in new soil to be fertilized. I like your worm towers.

  15. Brilliant! I like that the worms do the hard work. I used to grow Red Wigglers as part of my wheatgrass business and I know how tedious and time consuming it is to harvest the worms to get the castings. It’s a double bonus to allow them to act like worms do and aerate the garden. Thank you for the great idea….I’m going to make one tomorrow

  16. Is there a better time of year to start a worm tower? For example, which starting one in the fall be appropriate, or even in the winter?

    • Arlene, That all depends on where you live. If you live where the ground freezes, I would start them after the thaw. Here in South Florida the fall is the best. Happy Gardening!

      • I have just completed a Worm Tower, a small modification I used an old coffee tin as a lid, you could also use a plastic soda bottle cut in two. I was also thinking as I do have several worm farms on the go presently, that I don’t know if the worms return to the tower as much as leave eggs there which produce more worms, an ever ending supply of worms for the garden :). Thanks for the great idea no more management required just feed ’em.
        from
        Jonathan Cape Town, South Africa.

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