Monday, August 07, 2006

A New Intern: Worms and Trees

We have a new intern from UC Santa Cruz. Daniel Farber is doing an experiment on the use of worm compost as a fertilizer on our tree seedlings.

Daniel is doing his experiment on our manzanas de agua, Syzygium malaccense. This is a common fruit tree with shallow roots. This tree has value to our reforestation project because it helps protect water sheds by holding the water level high, and it provides an edible fruit to local farmers.

Daniel is using 100 seedlings for his experiment. For his control, he has put half of them in bags with a standard mixture used in coffee nurseries of dirt, rice husks, brosa (coffee husks), and calcium. The other 50 seedlings were placed in a bag with half of this mixture and half worm compost from Humberto Nuñigas worm farm.

Daniel measures the trunk and the leaf span every week. He will be measuring for a total of 7 weeks. This information will be valuable to us as we expand our own worm compost production and seedling nursery. Humberto Zuñiga promises us that worm compost is the best abono (fertilizer) there is.


Poetry, Courage, and Cancer said...


el grillo said...

Great job! I suggested to Humberto that he mix more cane waste with his cow manure. Recently, I have learned to sift my "VermiCompost" through a 1/8" (?cm) wire mesh screen. This separates the worms and cocoons from the compost for increased reproduction. We were using 1/4" mesh.