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Definition of compost tea

Categorized under "General"

Definition as written by paulgrow:

A "tea" made by steeping compost in water for a few days. Used as an ammendent in watering plants.

Definition as written by Horseshoe:

OH BOY! Compost tea, one of my favorite delights! Makes me wanna go make some...I can just see it steeping! Watch the color change! Smell the bouquet! Yes folks, you too can delight and benefit from compost tea.

I like to fill a feed bag (or burlap or other bag that will hold in the ingredients but yet allow water to flow thru it) with either finished compost or rotted manure (my preference is rabbit manure if you can get it.)

I have a big garden so I fill a 55 gal barrel nearly full and hang the 'tea bag' in there. For smaller gardens you can use a five gallon bucket and about a shovel-full of ingredient. I recommend you cover these containers. Not only does this hold in the heat at night but will also keep your dogs from drinking the tea. (Trust me folks, heed that advice. If you've ever shared a 10X30 living space with a 175# Great Dane that has diarrhea at midnite you'll understand!)

The compost tea can be used the same day if you choose but it will be weak. I like to let it steep for 3-5 days. This can then be diluted to the color of weak tea (the kind we drink).

Compost tea can be applied around the base of plants or used as a foliar feed - however, I tend to shy away from spraying it on foliage that I'm gonna eat (lettuces for example) due to possible health risks. If you do then be sure to not apply within a few days of harvest.

Excess tea can be stored in milk jugs out of the sun. For those of you without access to manure, see weed tea or oak leaf tea


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