Yesterday’s video shares the how and why of making compost tea. Let’s talk application and additives. First, repasting the recipe here:
Basic Compost Tea Recipe
1 cup finished compost
1 cup garden soil
Tap water (if water is chlorinated, allow to sit for 24 hours)
Cheesecloth or unbleached coffee filter and String, optional
Combine the compost and garden soil into a cheesecloth or unbleached coffee filter or add to the bucket. Secure tightly by tying with a string. Submerge the tea bag in a 5-gallon bucket filled with tap water. A water temperature of 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal. Add any desired additives to the water. If using an aerator, place in the bucket and turn it on. Brew the tea for 24 hours. Dilute to 3 parts tea:1 part water for application. Try to use the tea within 2 hours of brewing to deliver optimal benefits.
Optional Compost Tea Recipe Additives
Worm Castings (use in place of compost altogether or use half-cup compost, half-cup worm castings in recipe)
Worm castings contain more humus than compost or garden soil, enabling more water and
nutrient absorption. Also contains active soil microbes and low levels of iron.
Unsulphured Blackstrap Molasses (2 Tbsp)
Offers a food source for beneficial bacteria, stimulating population growth. Also fortifies tea with iron that won’t burn plants.
Liquid Fish Emulsion (1 teaspoon)
Liquid fish provides a readily accessible source of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. Also stimulates healthy soil structure.
Liquid Kelp (1 teaspoon, added after brew is complete)
A renewable resource which stimulates chlorophyll production, overall plant growth, photosynthesis, and strong root development. Also assists with nutrient absorption and contains trace amounts of nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium for plants.
Epsom Salt (1 teaspoon)
A source of magnesium for plants that assists with flowering and fruit production.
Angela is the farmer and content creator behind Axe & Root Homestead LLC. This historic six-acre farm is home to two Clydesdale horses, ten honeybee hives, three Hampshire sheep, a guardian dog, barn cats and a flock of 40 geese and ducks. The farm produces maple syrup, fruit from a small orchard and loads of garden produce for consumption, preservation and donation to the local food pantry.