I’ve never been squeamish around worms. In fact, I remember hauling a poor wiggler out of my worm bin during a party and regaling my guests with stories about my new pet. I’ve developed a mild case of Scoleciphobia, however, after reading the section on vermicomposting in Composting for Canada by Suzanne Lewis. The description of how worms mate, if you can call it that, was particularly disturbing.
That said this is one of the best books I’ve read on vermicomposting with clear, detailed instructions on everything from setting up and maintaining a bin to troubleshooting tips and information on worm pests and friends. The author has a decade's experience in educating Edmontonians about composting and waste reduction, so the book should be worth its ... dirt.
When I vermicomposted my worms suffered a mould infestation. According to Lewis, mould is simply another decomposer, and is not harmful to your bin. She says mould grows when food is left on the surface of the bedding instead of being worked in. Maybe the mould didn’t kill them after all; maybe I just forgot to feed them. I’m going to re-read it very carefully before I decide to try vermicomposting again.