Top 5 Benefits of Worm Castings
This blog post is a subsection of our Worm Castings 101 - Everything You Need To Know guide. In the 101 guide we cover multiple topics about worm castings, so if you'd like a more thorough walk through of what worm castings are and what they have to offer then click through to read more!
Have your gardening friends been telling you that you need to run out and get some worm castings right away but they don’t exactly know why? Well, those friends sound wonderful, so keep close to them :) But we’re here to help you understand why worm castings are so great for your plants! We’ve got a list of the top 5 benefits worm castings will bring to your plants! Let’s dive in!
Benefit 1: Increases plant growth
We’ll be the first to tell you that, for us, gardening is about mindfulness. But we also realize that if we’re going to do something we want to do it to the best of our ability, which means we want to grow our plants to be big, healthy, and full of deliciousness! Well, in that case you’re going to want to get your hands on some worm castings.
That’s because worm castings can help in all phases of the plant growth cycle, meaning it will increase germination rates, plant growth, and your plants’ yields! That’s why you’ll see benefits if you add worm castings throughout the various phases of the gardening season :
- Adding to your seedling mix
- Direct sowing
- Potting up
- Maintenance during the hot summer months
- Succession planting
By adding small amounts of worm castings to your plants at regular intervals you will help them grow a lot bigger than if you give them no worm castings at all. Some studies have shown that plants can grow up to 2x their size if given worm castings!
Picture of two crops planted at the same time, the left had worm castings and the right did not
Benefit 2: Protect your plants from diseases and pests
While worm castings won’t protect your plants from all diseases and pests, studies have shown that worm castings can help suppress certain plant diseases as well as pests, such as mites, aphids, or mealy bugs.
There still needs to be further studying to understand how, but initial findings believe the answers are found within the microbial life that are added to the soil via worm castings. This helps with benefit #1, because a plant grow nice and big when it’s fighting off disease and pests!
H2: Benefit 3: Improves your soil
That’s right - it’s good for your soil, too! And what’s great for your soil is great for your plants! There are a few ways worm castings help your soil:
- Water retention
- Boosts microbial life
- Increases micro-organisms
If you want to get into the nitty gritty details of how worm castings help plant growth then I suggest you read through our What Are Worm Castings blog post. I go into detail about how the microbes and water retention actually help your plant take in more nutrients!
Use worm castings to improve your garden's soil!
Benefit 4: Increase nutrient uptake
After taking a bow for that segue, let’s dive into benefit #4: increased nutrient uptake. What does this mean? It means that, thanks to worm castings, your plant will eat more!
Like every other living thing, plants need nutrients to grow big and strong and it just so happens that worm castings help facilitate that process. The beneficial bacteria found in worm castings help break down nutrients found within organic matter into a form that plants can take in. A plant doesn’t absorb the nutrients per se, rather they take in the nutrients while absorbing water found within the soil. This process is called the transpiration process.
Diagram of the Transpiration Process
This means that with a dose of worm castings your plant will be able to take advantage of a boost of nutrients!
Benefit 5: They don’t stink!
I’m serious! A lot of folks believe that because it’s poop that worm castings must stink. I can assure you they do not! They have no smell at all, meaning your garden will continue to smell like roses (assuming you planted roses). So if you thought you’d have to stop your nightly garden walks due to a pungent smell, think again! Keeping those garden walks on the schedule!
As you can see, worm castings have multiple benefits. They seem almost too good to be true, but they are indeed for real. Give your plants a little worm castings and watch them thrive!