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Kevin’s Jumping for Joy!

Saturday, May 7th, 2011

http://fromthemouthofkstewart.blogspot.com/2011/05/my-dealings-with-worm-dude.html#comment-form

I just wanted to share a really nice blog post that I received this evening. Kevin just received his Jumpers and boy is he excited.  I hope he doesn’t mind that I not only posted the link, but I also copied  his post to share with everyone.   Thanks Kevin!

my dealings with “the worm dude”

thewormdude

i ordered up some Alabama jumpers from the worm dude a couple weeks ago, ant they came in today, they are already in the ground, chompin away at my stupid clay soil makin it decent one poop at a time!

lemme tell you what, Jerry (he’s the worm dude) is one heck of a guy, and a great business man to deal with. you see when i ordered was just days before them horrible tornadoes hit the whole ‘Bama region. Jerry was prompt in letting me know things were bad for his worm farmer (yeah these worms actually come from ‘Bama) they just had a catastrophic event happen, i understood, but i appreciated that Jerry would get back with me. I got them today and i was very pleased with the worms i got, very jumpy :D and a bunch of em…i ordered 1000, and it actually seemed like 1000. ya see the last worm dealer i dealt with sold me worm that cant seem to live in clay very well, but told me they could, 500 cost the same as Jerry’s 1000, and they were lethargic.

I thank you personally Jerry (if you read this) and hope to do business with you again.

Now onto the garden, this clay is gonna be the death of my sanity…it’s horrible, so this weekend i am gonna get a lotta black dirt, take out a bunch of of the junk, and load in the goodness. My plants have been in there over a month and no noticeable growth, i think that they are pissed at me. so im gonna show them some lovin… we’ll see how the city’s transfer station’s compost does for me, it’s pretty cheap, so that’s a plus!

so wish me luck. and thanks again Jerry, i would love to do business again in the future!!

So My Wife Said…..

Thursday, March 31st, 2011

….Hey Hon, I think you should grow some artichokes.  And of course, never to be satisfied with a single artichoke plant, I plant a dozen of them, along with a bunch of garlic to deter bugs.    I then added some castings and let the Alabama Jumpers do their thing in the planting beds, and BAM!…Artichoke forest!

If you’ve followed my blog, you’ll see that these kinds of results are not rare.    They happen all the time.   Now if I just stopped the overplanting habit, everything would be good.  After all, who really needs 24 large garlic plants? :)

What’s the SECRET to GIANT Plants?

Saturday, July 24th, 2010

If you look back a couple weeks in my blog, you will see a small pumpkin plant.  Here is that small plant a few weeks later!    This plant grows so fast, you can almost watch it grow.  My wife is starting to get afraid of the plant, as if it would run after her…haha…..na, maybe it would crawl after her, but run, I don’t think so! ;)

I like to refer to my pumpkin plant as “Pumpkinzilla”!  We’ve already got a dozen or so mini soccer ball sized pumpkins growing.  By next week I expect them to be beach ball size.

Keep in mind there is no trick photography here…no “Special” seeds (In fact this was just a volunteer plant that I let grow).   The most important thing to know is that I’m no great gardener.  In fact, my idea of a garden is to dig a hole, add  castings, ask my wife to water the  area every once in awhile, and walk away.  How lazy is that?

So…as the headline of  this blog says, “What’s the SECRET to GIANT Plants”? 

Nothing but WORMS and WORM CASTINGS!

Thanks Alabama Jumpers! Thanks Red Wigglers!

Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

Is this something out of Jurassic Park?  Considering this plant is growing over a foot every day, maybe it is!  Scroll down a bit.  This is the same plant I have pictures of just 10 days ago (below).

This is what happens when you plant in well aerated soil (Thanks Alabama Jumpers),  that is loaded with beneficial bacteria (Thanks Red Wiggler Castings).

The best part is I haven’t done ANYTHING!   The worms did and continue to do all the work.

No special camera,  no special tricks,  just good healthy soil that is feeding the plants…like nature intended.

Would you like your garden to look like this?  It could.

1)  Collect or purchase a foot or two of leaf litter mulch.

2)  Keep damp

3)  Add Alabama Jumpers.

4)  Plant your plants.

5)  Add a couple handfuls of worm castings around the base of each plant.

Read through my blog.  You will see that this is not anything extraordinary.  EVERYTHING I plant looks like this.  No bone meal, blood meal, Synthetic Junk or book reading needed.  Just pick out some plants that you would LOVE to produce for you, and you’re good to go.

Featured Customer Question – Gary L.

Sunday, February 21st, 2010

Starting a new garden 2 to 3 in. of soil. The rest yellow clay.what is the
best soil breaker for the money.

Thank you gary

 

Hi Gary,

Without a doubt, Alabama Jumpers.

But, worms need a food source.  If I put you on an island without food, you
would perish quickly.  Same with the worms.  Jumpers food of choice is broken down leaf litter, so what I always recommend to people is that they get all the leaves in the  neighborhood, and just throw them on top of your garden bed.  As they break down, they will help amend your soil, plus they will provide a food source so your worms have a reason to stick  around.

If the leaves have all fallen in your neighborhood, just layer on a thick
layer of compost or mulch.  As it breaks down, it will provide food for the worms.

Avoid using something really strong smelling (You would not want a 2′ thick
layer  of Eucalyptus leaves to encourage worms).

That’s it….pretty simple.

Don’t Get Tricked!

Thursday, September 10th, 2009
Yes, they really jump!

Yes, they really jump!

 

Hi Everyone,

The large worm in the picture above is an Alabama Jumper.  It’s scientific name is Amynthas gracilus.  It is plain to see that this worm is NOT a Red Worm.  It’s color is grey. 

Who cares?

There is a high volume worm grower on the net selling what HE calls “Super Reds” as Alabama Jumpers.  But…the worm featured in his ads as a “Super Red” is a European Nightcrawler (Eisenia Hortensis)…basically a large Red Worm!   Super Reds, European Nightcrawler, Eisenia Hortensis…all names for the same worm…and yes, they are RED. 

BUT THEY ARE NOT ALABAMA JUMPERS – GREY WORMS KNOWN FOR THEIR ABILITY TO THRIVE IN EVEN HEAVY CLAY SOIL!!!

What’s the bottom line?  Avoid getting Ripped Off!

European Nightcrawlers, Canadian Nightcrawlers, Alabama Jumpers….basically any worm can be “Called” anything.  It’s only the scientific name that cannot be easily changed.

Know the type of worm you are buying.  Make sure your seller knows it’s scientic name!  If a seller tries to get you to buy Red Worms for your garden, run, don’t walk.  Red Worms are NOT dirt Worms.

Featured Customer Questions – Ginny

Friday, July 10th, 2009

I went fishing and used nightcrawlers as bait. I have like seven or eight
worms left. MY fridge is too cold for them, i have been told by other sites.
Can i put them in my garden. I am an animal freak and i hate to put them
somewhere they will die so please answer soon! :)
-Ginny

 

Hi Ginny,

“Nightcrawlers” is a name without a solid definition.  Basically it just means a large worm.

I need more information before I can answer your question as some nightcrawlers require refrigeration, others live in compost, others live in dirt.   Are these worms pinkish or grey?  About how large are they?

“Nightcrawler” Basics:

Canadian Nightcrawlers – HUGE worms, Great for fishing, require refrigeration.  

European Nightcrawlers/African Nightcrawlers – Both are composters.  Both are Amazing fishing worms and Great for composting!  No refrigeration needed….just keep in your garage or outside in the shade.

Alabama Jumpers – Amazingly strong worms.  Great for aerating your Soil.  Even heavy clay!

HOLY SMOKES…THOSE JUMPERS REALLY DO…..JUMP!

Saturday, July 4th, 2009
Yes, they really jump!

Yes, they really jump!

I had a funny comment from a customer that just bought his first batch of Jumpers.  Apparently, one of the Jumpers fell a short distance to the ground. 

His comment:

“You know how hard it is to pick a worm off of the ground?  Actually, the first time he jumped, I missed him as I was not prepared for that.  The second time, I got him”!

If you like worms, these are lotsa fun…plus, they’ll aerate your soil!

Just throw some mulch on the ground, add some moisture, and the worms will have a reason to…..PARTY!

Which Worm Does Well in “Dirt”?

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

Spring is coming!  Everyone is thinking about spring gardens.  As the economy weakens, more people are likely to start growing their own produce. 

I’m posting this in the hope that new readers have a very clear understanding that not all worms live in dirt!

The worm on the left is a Redworm.  The species happens to be Eisenia Hortensis(aka a European Nightcrawler).  The European Nightcrawler is a larger cousin of the Red Wiggler(aka Eisenia Fetida).  Redworms by nature are soft bodied worms.  Because they are extremely voracious, they are great for breaking down food waste.  They do extremely well in a worm bin, and are commonly raised in damp newspaper bedding, coir, or peat moss.

The worm on the right is a Alabama Jumper.  The species is Pheretima Hawayanus.  It does well in the dirt!  It loves clay soil!  As a composting worm in a worm bin…not so great!

Many garden centers sell worms in a package with an “Earthworm” label.  But garden centers typically know absolutely nothing about worms!

Don’t make the mistake of buying a Redworm (Even if it comes in a package labeled as Earthworms) to put in your soil.  Unless you treat your garden like a worm bin, and have a constant layer of damp mulch on top, the Redworm will not survive.

To Recap:

Compost Bin Worms:  Red Wigglers, European Nightcrawlers, African Nightcrawlers.

Dirt Worms:  Alabama Jumpers

Dirt:  Loves the worm poop in concentrated amounts from the Compost Bin Worms!  Loves the aeration from Dirt worms.

EVERYTHING YOU WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT ALABAMA JUMPERS….but didn’t know who to ask ;)

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

After going through almost 1,000 emails, I can cluster almost all of them into two groups:

1. I tried raising Red Wigglers before and killed them. Can you help me?
2. Please tell me how to raise the Alabama Jumpers?

This evening, let’s talk about raising Alabama Jumpers.

Alabama Jumper Characteristics:
*Clay soil dwelling (Unlike Red Wigglers)
*Thick skinned
*Navigate through thick clay soil with ease
*Extremely powerful (Allows them to leap off the ground)
*Large extruding probiscus
*Adults grow as long and as fat as a pencil

How to prepare your garden for Alabama Jumpers:
*Collect all the leaves in your neighborhood and place them on top of your soil. Yes, you can be that crazy person that rakes all your neighbors lawns! A 12 inch layer or more would not be too much! If you do not have leaves, you can use a bale of straw, or compost. Any of these organic materials makes a perfect food source for your Jumpers. If you have heavy clay soil, amending with organic material on a regular basis is a very good practice. Remember, these are strong worms, not Jackhammers!

Drop the worms in one area containing the organic material and walk away! It’s that easy. When you start seeing baby jumpers, you know you are successful. Even the babies jump like crazy. They are very distinctive.

Here is the science behind the instruction:
Worms reproduce best when they can easily find each other. Instead of initially spreading the jumpers out, keep them together so they can do what worms do….

MATE! A LOT!

As the density of your squirm (Look it up, it’s a real word), increases, your worms will naturally start to spread out. As you get congested with worms, you can introduce some to other areas.

So when people ask you how to breed Alabama Jumpers? Tell them the truth…they breed themselves. ;)