Compost tea is to your garden what canned spinach is to Popeye: a jump start of nutrients that boosts strength and vitality without fail. With a good compost tea brewer, or compost tea system, you can create a "microbe-brew" that effectively replaces fertilizers and pesticides. You'll also reduce your water usage by at least a third. A compost tea recipe is simple to make, and you can buy a brewer or make your own.
Compost tea is just what it sounds like, and if you can imagine steeping a big mesh bag filled with rich compost in de-chlorinated water, you've got the right idea. Making compost tea is one of the most logical and least complicated things you can do to improve the health of your plants, both indoor and out.
2.5 Gallon Compost Nutrient Mix
and 25 lb. Worm Castings Kit
How is Compost Tea Made?
A compost tea maker consists of a container to hold the liquid, a mesh cloth of any sort to contain the compost, something to aerate the tea so it stays aerobic, or full of oxygen, and a few additives such as organic molasses and fish protein to feed the microbes in the tea. Making your own compost tea brewer is easy, though buying one ready-made is even easier.
Types of Compost Teas
Organic compost tea is best because it is completely free from pesticides and fertilizers. Good tea compost is organic anyway, and all you need to do is use organic ingredients, like molasses and kelp, to make your compost tea. A bacterial compost is most common and best for most plants, though fungal compost is better for berry bushes and fruit trees. Compost teas can be made from any type of tea compost.
What Results Can I Expect?
Compost tea is a living soil amendment that enriches everything about the environment your plants grow in. The difference between dirt and soil is that soil is alive. It's full of beneficial microbes that are constantly moving around and providing nutrients. Plants need food and compost tea feeds the soil that feeds your plants. Plants grow bigger and healthier than ever with much less water.
It's Working at Harvard
The concept of compost tea has deep roots - literally. Harvard University has been on the grass-cutting edge and the results are amazing. By making and using compost tea on the campus grounds, Harvard has, for example, reduced irrigation needs by 33%. Core samples show that grass roots are more than twice as deep where compost tea has been used. This brief video shows you how they've done it, and provides helpful tips to get you started.