Worm Composting

Worm composting or vermicomposting is the practice of using worms to decompose or break down organic materials such as yard debris and food scraps. The end product is called worm castings, which is full of beneficial microbes and nutrients. Worm castings are similar to compost and make a great soil amendment to grow bigger and healthier plants. For people with no backyard, limited space, or minimal amount of organics, worm composting is an alternative solution as bins can be kept indoors or anywhere that is dark and quiet.

The videos below are recorded workshops (in the English and Spanish language) with instructions on how to set up a worm bin at home. If you generate a large amount of organic material or want to create compost more quickly, please visit our home composting webpage for information on creating a backyard hot pile.

The map and list below the videos offer some resources and locations where you can purchase red wiggler worms (Eisenia fetida) for your own bin at home, or finished worm castings for your garden. You can also find assistance in setting up vermicomposting for your organization.

Virtual Vermicomposting Workshops in English and Spanish

These virtual workshops were conducted by Sonoma County Master Gardeners and translated by Soluna Outreach Solutions.

Recorded workshops are also available for creating Backyard Hot Piles, which are great for people with more space. It is better suited for composting larger amounts of material and produces compost more quickly.

DOWNLOAD RESOURCES

The following resources are provided in English and Spanish language. Click on the image to download the .pdf

Help for the home gardener

Ask an expert! The Sonoma County Master Gardeners are available at (707) 565-2608 or mgsonoma@ucdavis.edu. Master Gardener volunteers are trained and certified by the University of California, Cooperative Extension. Workshops and seminars are given regularly at various libraries.

UC master gardener program of Sonoma County

FREE COMPOST FOR RESIDENTS

Existing compost giveaway event locations are listed below. Please check our calendar for upcoming events. Most events are held in the spring and summer. If you do not see your desired location for an upcoming event, it may have passed for the year, or it has not yet been scheduled. Feel free to email Xinci at xinci.tan@sonoma-county.org to ask.

  • Healdsburg - City Community Center
  • Petaluma - Petaluma Bounty
  • Santa Rosa - A Place to Play park
  • Sebastopol - Community Center Youth Annex
  • Sonoma - Larson and Garden parks
  • Unincorporated County - Fort Ross School
  • Windsor - Keiser park

If you wish to suggest a new location, please type it in the message box below. Leave your contact information so that we may follow up to determine whether it will be suitable. The site must be large enough for a 20-40 yd truck to enter and turn around, and it must allow for people to get out of their cars and shovel compost safely. Ideally, the site should also have at least two exits for traffic flow.

Want to help? Check the box and leave a message below about how much you'd like to be involved. An event is more likely to happen if we have one or two volunteers to help with the planning and being on site on event day to direct other cars.

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Locations

Location pin Compost giveaway - Sebastopol

DateApril 2

425 Morris St
Sebastopol, CA 95472

DescriptionFree compost available for pick-up; first come, first served. Bring your own shovels and buckets as the compost will be loose. Compost is certified USDA organic and CDFA approved, from WM Redwood facility. For more events: https://zerowastesonoma.gov/compost-giveaways

Location pin Compost Giveaway - Cazadero

DateApril 23

30600 Seaview Rd
Cazadero, CA 95421

DescriptionFree compost available for pick-up; first come, first served. Bring your own shovels and buckets as the compost will be loose. Compost is certified USDA organic and CDFA approved, from WM Redwood facility. For more events: https://zerowastesonoma.gov/compost-giveaways

Location pin Compost Giveaway - Sebastopol

DateMay 6

425 Morris St
Sebastopol, CA 95472

DescriptionFree compost available for pick-up; first come, first served. Bring your own shovels and buckets as the compost will be loose. Compost is certified USDA organic and CDFA approved, from WM Redwood facility. For more events: https://zerowastesonoma.gov/compost-giveaways

Location pin Compost Giveaway/Eco-Friendly Garden Tour

DateMay 13

Santa Rosa, CA

DescriptionAs part of the annual Eco-Friendly Garden Tour put on by the Sonoma Marin Saving Water Partnership, Zero Waste Sonoma is offering free compost for residents to pick up. More details will be available soon.

Location pin Delta Worms

4882 Cabrillo Point
Discovery Bay, CA 94505

NotesSupplier of red wiggler worms, castings, and worm extract available for purchase. Ships to Northern California. Consultation, education, and training services also available.

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Location pin Mass Wiggle

6155 Lakeville Highway
Petaluma, CA 94952

NotesBulk worm castings available for sale. Visit the website to order, or call or email Dave for a tour of his facilities.

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Location pin Sonoma County Master Gardeners

133 Aviation Blvd, STE 109
Santa Rosa, CA 95403

NotesMaster Gardener volunteers are trained and certified by the University of California Cooperative Extension. Call or email your home composting questions.

Location pin Sonoma Valley Worm Farm

1777 Watmaugh Rd
Sonoma, CA 95476

NotesRed wriggler worms, worm castings, and vermi-extract for sale. See website for more information or call to place an order. Worms shipped to Northern California locations only.

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Location pin The Compost Club

NotesOrganization assists schools and businesses in setting up vermicomposting systems. Visit the website for more info and educational resources..