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[permaculture] Re: Weed & manure teas
In a message dated 5/13/99 9:39:11 AM, you wrote:
<<I'm interested in reading people's experiences with weed teas and manure
teas as fertilizers. I'd like to embark on an extensive fertilizing
routine using these two nutrient sources but want to reduce my learning
curve relative to how to effectively apply them. Any information or
recommendations of resources would be helpful.
the folks that work with john jeavons put out a little booklet on foliar
feeding with manure and weed teas. they take the view that foliar feeding, or
any kind of fertilization program, basically feeds the plants. for
sustainablility one should be focused on feeding the soil. that being said,
foliar feeding, which is a very direct way to get the teas to the plants, is
a good remedial method of fertilization when your soil is still being
developed. my experience would tend to support this point of view. in the
early stages of developing gardens, first couple years, foliar feeding does
tend to provide a little boost. after that it doesn't seem to have nearly as
in general I think it is preferable to compost or mulch the material and get
it into the soil cycle that way. reasons: soils need the full complement of
goodies in the weeds and manure, less work, less risk of leaching those
nutrients, feeds the soil, not just the plants.
it is a bit of work, particularly if you're going to do it on any scale
larger than a backyard garden. you're moving alot of water around, which is
always a big job.
situations that I find particularly well suited to tea application are
greenhouse fertilization and potted plants, where soil building is a little
I wouldn't say don't do it, just recognize that it's work, and when it's
appropriate. build the soil and over time your need for external
fertilization is not necessary.
I hope this helps,
Santa Fe, New Mexico
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