Family owned and operated from the foothills of Western North Carolina, Greenhill Worm Farm produces quality worm castings from worms raised right here on the farm. Owner Sallie Smith started raising worms to make plant food for her own garden. Excited by the results, she was inspired to start Greenhill Worm Farm. Daughters Sarah and Laura, son-in-law Milton, and friend Brian round out the team of worm wranglers.
As a gardener, I have done everything wrong. I have tilled the soil and compacted the soil. I have used chemicals and pesticides. I have left the ground bare and allowed precious topsoil to wash and erode away. I’ve waited weeks for seeds to germinate that never did, and lost entire crops in just a few days. If it could be done wrong in the garden, I’ve done it.
Fortunately, gardening has a learning curve. Through the years I evolved to a completely natural, less invasive approach. I stopped tilling and started layering. I threw out the chemicals and brought in cardboard, compost, and mulch – by the truckload. Through patience and perseverance, what was once a plot of rock and red clay gradually became a fruitful growing environment.
But still, there were issues. My gardening success was often hit or miss, and I never knew why. Something was lacking and I didn’t know what. And then I discovered vermiculture.
Vermiculture is raising worms for the purpose of turning organic material into compost. I started with a plastic tub of shredded cardboard, a handful of kitchen scraps, and a pound of Red Wigglers. I fed the worms and kept them moist, making sure they were not too hot or too cold. The worms totally ignored me, munching happily away on the cardboard and other food scraps. Two months later the tub yielded an amazing gift: a mound of rich, dark earthy-smelling castings, or vermicast. The worms had done their thing.
What happened next was astounding. I had tossed some of the worm castings on part of my garden, and in just a short time I noticed some amazing differences. The plants that had received the worm castings grew larger and faster and had more leaves. They were stronger, greener, and eventually produced higher yields. These plants fared much better in the intense heat and summer drought, continuing to thrive long after the other ones had wilted and given up. The soil even seemed healthier – and it was!
Thrilled by these results, and excited to share my vermiculture success with other gardeners, I started Greenhill Worm Farm. I am passionate about worm farming and even more passionate about helping others achieve success with worm products. We’ve come a long way from the Rubbermaid tub of shredded cardboard and kitchen scraps. Welcome to the wonderful world of worm farming!