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N.C. State's Vermiculture Conference attracts more than 110 from around the world

May 25, 2010

MEDIA CONTACT: Rhonda Sherman, 919.515.6770 or rhonda_sherman@ncsu.edu

N.C. State University's Annual Vermiculture Conference, to be held in Durham May 27-28, will attract more than 110 participants from across the country and from five other countries. The annual conference, aimed at large-scale vermicomposting operations, is the only one of its kind in the country.

News media are invited to the conference, which will be at Durham Public Schools Staff Development Center, Meeting Room M1, 2107 Hillandale Rd., Durham. More information is available on the conference website.

Vermiculture uses worms to break down organic waste material, and the resulting byproduct -- called vermicompost -- is valued as a rich fertilizer. Research has shown that plants raised with vermicompost produce greater yields and have stronger disease resistance, said Rhonda Sherman, conference organizer and solid waste extension specialist in biological and agricultural engineering, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Sherman's vermicompost website attracts visitors and inquiries from around the world. Workshop participants this year will come from as far away as Guatemala, India, Thailand, Israel and Canada.

The conference includes a Thursday afternoon tour of an operation that sells earthworms, vermicompost and vermicompost tea -- a liquid fertilizer. The grower maintains 1,000 pounds of worms in four 42-foot beds, and bags and sells vermicompost using a homemade harvester.

In addition to the tour, speakers will address a variety of topics, including: vermicomposting technologies, vermicompost research studies, earthworm husbandry, bioremediation of contaminated soils, vermicompost applications, marketing products, brewing and applying vermicompost tea and testing vermicompost.

--Written by Natalie Hampton, Natalie_Hampton@ncsu.edu or 919.513.3128

Posted by Natalie at May 25, 2010 02:03 PM