Soil and plant health
Most of us realize that the humble worm plays an important part in our gardens but how important is this part?
Cleopatra considered worms “Royal”, Aristotle called them “the intestines of the earth” and Charles Darwin believed they were the most important creatures on the planet. Worms have many significant effects on the soil they live in, this in turn has a major bearing on the health of plants growing in that soil.
The physical activity of the worms in the soil, ie burrowing backwards and forwards, up and down not only breaks up the soil but allows water and air to enter, important, not only for the plants root system but also for other life from tiny bacteria and fungi to woodlice and beetles, all of which have a part to play. The organic matter that falls to the surface of the soil, bits of dead plant, leaves, even dead animals and birds all start to decay and the worms will come to the surface and feed on this material, all these things have nutrients contained within them, when the worm has digested this matter it is expelled back into the soil, known as “casts” sometimes on top sometimes below (often seen as the small mounds of “curly” soil, particularly on the lawn!) all these nutrients are then ready for the plants to use. Research has shown that not only do worms free these nutrients but they also cause the soil to become more neutral and if that is not enough they are known to remove certain contaminating chemicals and heavy metals!
Having spent years in digging and cultivating our land, adding large quantities of fertilizers and spraying huge quantities of chemicals onto plants, we are now realizing that had we not done this, worms and all the micro life in the soil would have kept it in pretty good shape, so now we are putting worms back into the soil!.
A lot of people wonder how professional landscapers and gardeners are able to come up with such beautiful works of arts in the gardens they create. Sure they may have been gifted with a greener thumb and they’ve been doing what they’re doing for so long that they already know the tricks of the trade. However, there’s one technique most professionals use that can easily be applied by beginner and advanced gardening enthusiasts alike. The secret lies in a compost material that is aptly nicknamed “black gold.” Read on below to see what the all the fuss is about.
Black Gold – what Is It?
Black gold is basically a type of compost that comes from earthworm excrement that has loads of benefits for both the plants and the soil. Unlike other fertilizers of the same nature, this compost is not accompanied with a foul smell. In fact, rubbing them between one’s fingers makes black gold feel like a fine type of soil. Because of its soil-benefiting properties such as increasing retention capacity, porosity, drainage, structure, and aeration, the use of black gold eliminates the need for those overpriced water retaining gels. Black gold is a well kept gardening secret used by professionals that help them get near miraculous results.
How Does It Affect Plant Growth?
In terms of benefits for the plants, black gold also packs in a lot of nutritional properties that help the vegetation reach optimum growth levels. They have been known to increase plants’ diameter, height, and stem, as well as enhancing root growth and dry weight. Black gold is also scientifically proven to facilitate in the production of more flowers per plant as compared to normal compost.
The beneficial properties of black gold are also applicable for vegetables. This compost is especially effective for those who do organic gardening in small spaces as black gold is known to increase the yield of veggies to as much as 30% in certain cases.
Procurement and Use
Because of the previously discussed amazing properties of black gold, it is easy for one to think that procurement might pose as a potential problem. Some might even believe that this product is so hard to find that one would be better off searching in the black markets. There’s no need to fret as black gold is actually available in local Wormeries. Black gold is already being produced commercially today and one could easily get more than enough for his garden without needing to conduct secret underground meets. The problem however is that this item is quite expensive.
This is why it is a better idea to build one from home. There are loads of sources online that will provide information on how to build and properly care for personal Wormeries. There’s no need to worry as feeding and breeding worms are not as difficult as it may seem; best of all is that they are easy to maintain and they don’t smell.
The use of black gold is also quite simple. One would need around 15 pounds for every 80 square feet of garden. Half of this compost should be used as top dressing for the soil while the rest can be distributed to hanging baskets and containers.
Written by: Benedict Yossarian
Published by: http://www.ArticleBiz.com