General Discussion:

Using compost tea


Messages posted to thread:

From:Date:Zone:
Kiru02-Aug-01 08:34 PM EST
Brian @ P&P Plants02-Aug-01 11:15 PM EST 3   
Dee03-Aug-01 12:06 PM EST 5   
Linda05-Aug-01 11:53 AM EST   
Betty05-Aug-01 02:49 PM EST 5a   
Linda05-Aug-01 03:07 PM EST   
Deborah05-Aug-01 03:33 PM EST 6b   
Betty06-Aug-01 03:53 AM EST 5a   
Debbie06-Aug-01 02:57 PM EST   
Kiru07-Aug-01 06:36 PM EST   
Betty07-Aug-01 08:19 PM EST 5a   
Kiru07-Aug-01 09:28 PM EST   
Louise08-Aug-01 03:00 PM EST 2b   
Kiru08-Aug-01 07:42 PM EST   
Brian @ P&P Plants08-Aug-01 09:53 PM EST 3   


Subject: Using compost tea
From: Kiru
Date: 02-Aug-01 08:34 PM EST

Hi!

I just made myself a few batches of compost tea. Was wondering: how often can I give my container plants compost tea? Is it too much to be putting some into the water for every watering?

Thanks!

P.S. As an aside... I've already watered with some c.t., and it's amazing how well my plants have responded!!! My rose put out a bloom and my tomato plant's tomatoes just took off! Wonderful stuff!

Kiru


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Brian @ P&P Plants
Zone: 3
Date: 02-Aug-01 11:15 PM EST

Glad to hear that someone is using an old method for nuturing their plants. I haven't done so yet. I think that the stronger the Tea, the less often it will have to be used. Do you know what was composted? Was it mainly fresh material like grass cuttings or old material like last years leaves and this springs thatch from the lawn? The reason I ask this is the Nitrogen percentage will be higher from green material. Also the ph should be tested so you don't change the soil ph in a negative. Let us know how you are doing so others may be enlightened on using CT.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Dee
Zone: 5
Date: 03-Aug-01 12:06 PM EST

Just came across this informantio could you please explain and how to make this combination, Thanks Dee


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Linda
Zone:
Date: 05-Aug-01 11:53 AM EST

Take about a gallon of fresh manure and place it in a cloth bag. Suspend the bagged manure in a large garbage pail full if water. Swish the bag onece a day for acouple of weeks - up to a month. The results will be a liquid fertilizer.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Betty
Zone: 5a
Date: 05-Aug-01 02:49 PM EST

Oh my, I like to go natural in my garden, but I think that is too natural for me. It must smell, and even attract flies. I am sure it works, but what about the neighbours? I live in the country and when the farmers are spreading their liquid fertilizer the smell is terrible. Now this is on a smaller scale but still, I think I will stick to my compost.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Linda
Zone:
Date: 05-Aug-01 03:07 PM EST

Betty thanks for the chuckle. i have never used it either but I suspect the smell is less than the liquid manure which can make one want to move to the city.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Deborah
Zone: 6b
Date: 05-Aug-01 03:33 PM EST

The smell is really not bad at all, as it's used on such a small scale...in fact, it's hardly noticable, honest! I've been using it for three years, and am thrilled with the results. I also use it as a weaker solution foliar spray,sprayed directly on my plants just before they blossom; they just love it! For fertilizing, I use it first thing in the spring, and every 3 weeks or so during the growing season... really depends on how well I remember to make it up! Soooo...go forth and fertilize!! Happy Gardening!


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Betty
Zone: 5a
Date: 06-Aug-01 03:53 AM EST

You two are very convincing, maybe it was the way the instructions started, "take about a gallon of FRESH manure", that brought back remembrances of the farm I would rather forget. I can just imagine the looks on anyone's face if they lifted the lid (you do keep it covered??? oh please do not say it needs the sun to ferment). I have already raised a few eyebrows by not using pesticides and herbicides, by conserving water (although I have plenty), feeding chipmunks (rodents - you know!), feeding birds in the summer, and by some of the articles I have recycled into my garden decor. This could convince them of what they have been suspecting about me all along.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Debbie
Zone:
Date: 06-Aug-01 02:57 PM EST

The benefits much outway the smell if any. Actually if your composts is done properly then there should be no ofensive smell at all. Using compost teas not only conserves the amount of compost you need to use in your garden but allow the plant to receive it's benefits faster then if you are only topdressing with it. When used as a foliar spray it is instantly available to the plant and helps fight of fungal disease as well as condition the soil and add nutrients and actually make your harvest taste better and more nutritional. It also helps break down toxins in the soil.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Kiru
Zone:
Date: 07-Aug-01 06:36 PM EST

Hi again!

I'm an environmental freak (plus I'm CHEAP!) so whenever I can reuse something and help out the planet while I'm at it... I go hog wild with it!!! : ) I'm delighted as well, Brian, that there are people out there using compost tea!

About what was in my compost: it's a mix of just about anything that can go in a compost but it's mainly grass cuttings, and kitchen scraps. Like I mentioned, I'm seeing PHENOMENAL results with the tea. I'd been feeding with commercial fertilizers before this and didn't get any results... not the kind of growth that I'm seeing after the tea!

Betty, how I make my tea is on a much smaller scale than described above. I simply fill an ice cream bucket halfway with a scoop of compost, then I fill the bucket with water, swirl all of it around (and make a big mess} then pour the "tea" through a home-made pantyhose strainer into another bucket for storage. Neither my compost nor my tea smells. If your compost smells, it's because there's something in there that shouldn't be in there or it's not composting correctly.

I just read a book about composting and learned some very interesting composting materials that I hadn't considered: hair (both human and animal) and paper! Who'da known??

Kiru


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Betty
Zone: 5a
Date: 07-Aug-01 08:19 PM EST

Kiru, my compost does not smell. It was the manure that I thought might give off an unpleasant odor. I am going to try your recipe for the tea using compost. I have thrown paper towels, Kleenex, and paper egg cartons in my compost for years. I found that newspaper does not break down as quickly as the other does. You can also put you vacuum bag of dirt in the compost, (remove any plastic around the hole). About the only thing I do not add is meat, fats, or weeds. I find lots of moisture is the answer to good compost, I always add any leftover tea or coffee to it as well.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Kiru
Zone:
Date: 07-Aug-01 09:28 PM EST

Hi Betty,

Sorry for the mix up! I would also think 'fresh' manure would stink too!! : )

I remember reading about the vacuum bag thing too! That was a new one for me! It gets me even more excited... now there will be that much less garbage going to the landfill each week! : )

Kiru


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Louise
Zone: 2b
Date: 08-Aug-01 03:00 PM EST

This tea sounds great. Do you water it down or use it as it is? Thanks.


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Kiru
Zone:
Date: 08-Aug-01 07:42 PM EST

Hi Louise,

I usually water it down, but I don't do it very accurately, unfortunately! I kinda eyeball it, really!


Subject: RE: Using compost tea
From: Brian @ P&P Plants
Zone: 3
Date: 08-Aug-01 09:53 PM EST

Compost Tea is what the name implies, the Manure should not be fresh, but well composted. For water that you use to make the tea, here is a use for the recycling of your bath, clothes washing, vegetable cooking waters. Why dispose of the water that has certain nutrients and a second life. You could also use these water to aid in the composting of your grass clippings, leaves etc. To compost newspaper, it should be shredded or torn into smaller pieces and then mixed into the other composting materials. Full sheets tend to prevent the water, air and microbes to move through the pile effectively. Add a bit of soil to the compost pile when you add new material, it contains the microbes that do the work.


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