Interested in starting your own home worm compost instead of participating in our free curbside composting program? Take a free home composting workshop to discover the basics of backyard composting and composting with worms. You’ll learn how to turn yard trimmings and kitchen scraps into rich, free compost for your garden.

The City and County of Napa, NRWS/NCRWS, and the U.C. Master Gardeners of Napa County offer free composting classes annually. Check your garbage bill inserts early in the year for a registration form or register online. For more composting information or questions, call the Master Gardeners at (707) 253-4143. If you are looking for worms for a worm composting bin, check out Worm Endings Unlimited.


Want to purchase ready-made compost for your garden from our composting program? Come to the Napa Recycling & Composting Facility. Organic compost costs $10/cubic yard, plus tax.

Compost and soil delivery is available within our service area, with a 10 yard minimum. Please call (707) 255-5200 for a delivery quote.


Worm Farm Bin

Worm farming, also known as vermiculture, is a simple way of composting organics in the comfort of your own home. A sturdy bin with a lid, bedding material and worms are all that is needed to start your “farm,” which can be kept indoors or out. Hungry worms make quick work of leftover food scraps, and over weeks and months, transform them into fabulous, nutrient-dense fertilizer (a.k.a. “worm poop”) that can be used for household plants or your outdoor garden. Ready-made farms are available for purchase online, though it is no less effective and much cheaper to create one. This video features step-by-step DIY instructions:

The Worms

Not just any worm will do for a worm farm; red wigglers are best. This type of worm especially thrives when eating decaying organic material. Garden centers often carry red wigglers, or they may be purchased online. For optimal results, worms are fed equal parts “greens” and “browns,” as it is called in the organic gardening world. These designations refer to the carbon to nitrogen ratio of the material, not the actual colors. Feeding guidelines are as follows:

Yes:

Fruit, vegetables, bread, coffee grounds, tea bags, dead plants/leaves, egg shells, uncoated paper (newspaper, coffee filters and other unbleached paper products) and vacuum cleaner dust.

No:

Citrus fruits, onions, garlic, leeks or shallots, meat, fish or poultry, eggs, dairy, greasy food, salty food, prepackaged/processed food, and glossy magazine paper or color dyed paper.

More Information and Troubleshooting

Will my bin smell or attract fruit flies? How many worms will I need? These questions and more are answered by City Farmer.

Planet Natural also provides a great worm composting write-up for beginners.

Curl up with the Amazon best seller Worms Eat My Garbage: How to Set Up and Maintain a Worm Composting System, a great introductory guide to vermicomposting.

Worm Composting in Apartments

Living in tight quarters poses unique challenges for those who want to compost. Learn how to do it in your apartment with this step-by-step infographic from Sustainable America:

Infographic: How to Compost in Your Apartment