The success and production from the worm-farm, like most things in life, depends very much on what you put into it (literally and figuratively).
The position of the farm should be in the shade and preferably close to the kitchen for easy top ups/feeding.
The most important component is the worms themselves. They aren’t your common SA garden earthworms but Eisenia worms. I started with what I was told were red wrigglers (Eisenia Fetida) but have been informed that red tigers (Eisenia Andrei )are better. Who knows which I originally stumbled upon. Whatever they are, they are doing a fine job.
Fortunately these species from the northern hemisphere are non- invasive. A quick search on google will give you suppliers based in various provinces.
All kitchen scraps should be chopped up first ,manually or in a liquidizer BUT the lazy (like me) can skip this step and wait for a natural decay process. Old coffee grounds also can be added (slowly so the worms adapt) but this picks up acidity and can attract ants. You can add crushed egg shells if you like .
You must avoid citrus, onion, garlic and meat. Do not allow a compost to build up inside the worm box so avoid big quantities (I avoid completely) of cut grass and dry leaves as these will cook your worm family.
The other requirement is water. Again tap water is fine even with the chlorine that has been added. I do like putting rain water into the system whenever I can.
On a weekly to monthly basis depending on how much your worms are eating, you need to add newspaper that’s been shredded (by hand is fine) and some old egg cartons.
Remember that the amounts of water added, the amount of food required changes throughout the year and you need to learn to manage the farm accordingly.
Once the worms have settled and bred you will from time to time have to clean out the build- up of castings. This is very good fertilizer. The easiest method is to add an additional layer to your worm farm and start feeding in the new one. The worms will follow the food and after a couple of weeks you can empty the middle container without losing any worms.
The other thing to remember is that worms don’t like bright light so if you do want to take a look at them (for educational purposes) , or to chat to the worms and tell them what a great job they are doing for you, you can do this with a red light.
The leachate is a good organic fertilizer and can be diluted up to 1:10 with water. All worm farmers have their recipe/method for making a worm “tea” by soaking the castings in a bucket but you can use your imagination here if you want some extra work.
If you do get ants in the worm-farm it means its acidic or too dry and you can get rid of them by boosting the moisture content.