Manure Fertilizer Tea: Recipe+Uses

June 21, 2021

WHAT IS MANURE FERTILIZER TEA?

If you raise animals, more than likely, you probably have a lot of poop laying around. Did you know you could be utilizing it as an organic fertilizer for your garden? Animal manure, specifically, farm animal manure is high in nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, all the good stuff plants need to grow and thrive. Manure Fertilizer Tea works by pulling the nutrients out of the solid manure into the water creating an organic liquid fertilizer that can be easily applied to plants. Its pretty much homemade miracle grow! It is a super easy process and make a huge difference in your plants and garden. Why wouldn’t you give it a try?

WHAT TYPE OF MANURE CAN BE USED?

Manure Fertilizer Tea can be made using the manure of various farm animals including cows, horses, goats, sheep, rabbits and chickens. Each type of manure offers a different strength of nutrients.

For example, chicken manure is very high in nitrogen but used raw or uncomposted it will burn plants. Cow manure on the other hand is very low in nitrogen and the most balanced animal manure meaning it is great for all garden uses. Horse, goat, sheep manure all fall somewhere in between the two one a nitrogen rich nutrient scale.

Pig, cat and dog manure should never be composted or used in the garden because they are likely to contain parasites and pathogens.

HOW TO AGE MANURE

It is important to only use aged manure in your garden. If animal manure is used raw it can burn plants, spread weeds and contaminate edible plants which can lead to serious illnesses in humans including E. coli. Composting helps to kill weed seeds and prevent illness.

Manure can be aged through hot composting. This works by combining fresh manure and any old organic bedding into a large pile (the larger the pile, the faster it heats up). The pile needs to stay somewhat moist and allowed to set in a sunny warm area for at least six months. The pile will heat internally killing weed seed and potential pathogens.

RECIPE + PROCESS

What you will need:

-5 gallon bucket or garbage can

-Burlap feed sack

-Twine

-Aged Manure (horse, cow, goat, rabbit, chicken)

-Water

The process:

Fill burlap feed sack (about halfway full) with aged manure and secure opening with twine. Place the feed sack into an empty bucket. Cover the feed sack of manure with water until the bucket is almost full. The ratio should be 2 parts water to  1 part manure.

Place the bucket in a sunny spot for 2-3 days. “Mix” once a day by dunking the burlap sack in and out of the water a few times.

Remove the burlap bag, making sure to squeeze out any extra liquid, thats the good stuff.

It is important to dilute Manure Fertilizer Tea otherwise it will be too strong and could burn plants. Dilution ratio is 1 part water to 1 part tea. It will have a light brownish tint and will look like, well, tea.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?

Manure Fertilizer Tea is a great low cost, simple and organic replacement for synthetic fertilizers. It is rich in nutrients, particularly Nitrogen. Nitrogen is especially important during the early growing stages, making Manure Fertilizer Tea great for seedlings. Nitrogen will also help with beautiful foliage growth.

Manure Fertilizer should be applied early in the growing season for an initial boost of nutrients and limited later in the season as excess Nitrogen can delay or limit flowering and fruit production.

HOW TO APPLY

Manure Fertilizer Tea can be applied directly at the base of plants as well as added into a hose sprayer attachment then sprayed onto plants. Fertilizer can be applied weekly.

Be sure to add any leftover solid manure back to your compost pile or work it back into the soil of your garden to ensure your plants and garden are receiving maximum benefit.

*not recommended for use on root crops such as potatoes and carrots or greens such as lettuce and kale.

-Shawna

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