Living with crawlies

Most people are at their disgusting best and tend to say: Yuck; even those who swear by organic foods, when they come across an earthworm. When such incidents happen around me I generally mumble a prayer: God pardon them for they do not know.
mangalI know these ‘yuck’ people will never want to enter my farm, at least not during the rains: for you’re likely to come across the creepy crawlies at every step you take or see snails moving slowly on the branches. I am fond of my earthworms and they know that. My policy of peaceful coexistence has paid dividends: Earthworms here are nearly 8 inches long and almost thick as a lead pencil.
Last year I had begun my search in mid October and realized it was too late. This time I started early and have been repeatedly egging Mangal, and thankfully we have had a good harvest of earthworms. earthAll these earthworms go to my vermicompost pit to live and multiply among the leaf and grass litter. Occasionally I feed the pit with the flour mill dust and egg peels. A farmer friend who sells vermicompost frequently sprays his pit with ghee and honey. “It helps,” he says.
I was introduced to the beneficial affects of earthworm by none other than Dr Sudhir Ghatnekar of Biotechnology Resource Centre. A pioneer in management of waste and garbage using biotechnology, Dr Ghatnekar in November 2011 gifted me with buckets of earthworms.

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