This year I started using the magic of compost tea on the garden. I’ve come across this idea in the past but never dabbled in it until this past spring. In this blog I’ll tell you how I make it and use it and just how happy it makes my plants.
Compost tea is PACKED with all the right nutrients for plants and soil health. Letting it steep in water only helps the nitrogen to break apart and become even more useful. I could talk all day about it but feel free to do your own research on the benefits of compost tea and the many ways you can brew it at home.
First off, it depends how much you need and how big your garden or collection of plants is. My garden is rather large so I brew my tea in a 50 gallon drum. Depending on the health of my plants and if there is plenty of rain or not, I can go through this in one day on just a handful of plants. So I’ll be making an area for more then one drum and/or a water tote instead.
I start by filling a 20 litre bucket with my compost from my pile. I make sure to use the stuff that has broken down and not just the raw stuff so as not to make it too strong on the plants. I empty the bucket into my large drum and fill with water.
It’s best when you can fill it with rain water instead of a hose because rain water is magic for the plants but no ones perfect. When filling with water, make sure you get a foamy froth build up as you fill, that means your compost is the good shit!
Don’t forget to mix it up! I just use a shovel.
Then I cover it with the neat lid my hubby made for it. I don’t believe covering is necessary however I didn’t want any wildlife getting in and drowning.
You can use the tea right away if you have an emergency plant you are trying to revive however the whole reason it’s called “tea” is because it’s meant to steep. I steep mine between 3-7 days and use it in between as well. Sometimes I don’t need it right away and it can steep for a couple of weeks but I make sure not to leave it longer then that as it’s at the peak of nutrients within the window timeline.
When you are ready to use, I just grab a watering can, dunk it in and fill. It will have some floating compost bits but let’s not be afraid to get our hands a little dirty here?!
Once it’s used up, most of the solid stuff will be sitting at the bottom and can be dumped back onto the compost.
I’ve noticed that when I put this on any of my plants or trees, they spring into life within hours and are reaching for the sky! I use it on houseplants also because it is a much needed fertilizer without any of those harmful chemicals. For an added boost to your plants, sprinkle Epsom salts at the base and water in with a jug of tea, your plants will LOVE it!
I also use it to spray on my fruit trees. I was looking for an alternative spray that wasn’t full of all those crappy chemicals. For this, you have to strain the tea into a spray bottle. I mix mine with a few other ingredients but I can post that for next time.
Thanks for reading and happy composting!