Compost teas provide an excellent, organic way to feed your soil or soilless mix provide the best environment for your roots to keep your plants thriving throughout their lifecycle. Below you will find compost tea recipes that I use in my garden as well as when you should be using each specific tea based on your plant’s age. I hope this is helpful for you as you explore some of the benefits of using compost teas in your garden.

A study out of the University of Vermont – Compost Tea to Suppress Plant Disease

I recommend that you have a few 5-gallon buckets, measuring cups (only used for this purpose), air pump, air stones, and Rubbermaid storage bins ready to use exclusively for your teas and other mixes. Cross-contamination could pose serious problems later in the growing cycle or hinder your plants and killing them immediately. Always clean your equipment and don’t use it for multiple purposes outside of your grow room or garden.

Compost Tea

  1. 4 Gallons of water in a 5-gallon brewer will allow for foaming
  2. 1.5 cups of Earthworm castings or high-quality compost screened so as not to clog the compost tea brewer.
  3. 1/3 Cup Non-Sulfured Molasses
  4. Brew for 24 – 30 Hours at between 60 and 80 degrees F for optimal results. If colder brew for 30-34 hours if warmer brew for 20-30 hours. *Without a microscope and Dissolved Oxygen Meter we really don’t know what is going on in the Compost Tea. I would recommend using EWC Slurry if you don’t want to worry about all of this. To make a slurry using 10-20% vermicompost to clean water and brew for 24 hours.

Use this if your plants aren’t taking to the new soil well, or if the new seedlings aren’t growing as fast as you think they should be. Compost tea will help kick-start the nutrient cycling that occurs when soil micro-life breakdown the organic soil amendments into available plant nutrients the plants can uptake.

Often times when you see a plant that is yellowing or has strange growth it is because of a nutrient deficiency. Adding more fertilizer is NOT the problem when you Build A Soil properly. The nutrients are Absolutely in the soil, and this cuts all the guessing out. If you use compost tea in this situation you will more than likely see all of the plants start miraculously growing healthy again within 48 hours. The great thing is you won’t need to spend any time diagnosing for plant health issues because it’s all in the SOIL baby!

Here is the basic Compost Tea Recipe you should always be using. Unless you have expensive microscopes and a complete understanding of the processes involved it will be best to stick with this recipe.

You will Need a compost tea brewer, if you don’t have one, then check out the DIY Tutorial instructions here or email me and I’ll help you build a cheap one that will work alright to start.

(If you don’t have the resources to build a proper brewer, just make Earthworm Casting Slurry Instead and feed that to your plants or purchase this simple 3 gallon tea brewer)

Guano Teas

Seedling Mix:

  1. 1 Cup – Earthworm Castings (EWC) per 5 gallons of water
  2. 5 tsp. Black Strap Molasses per 5 gallons of water
  3. Bubble/Aerate it for 24 hours @ 70 degrees.

Veg Mix:

  1. 1/3 cup Peruvian Seabird Guano or 1/3 cup High N (Nitrogen) Bat Guano (Mexican)
  2. 1/3 cup Earth Worm Castings
  3. 5 tsp. Maxicrop 1-0-4 powdered kelp extract or Acadian Kelp extract.

(Step 1-3 makes the “dry mix”. You can make all you want and save it to use later.)

Mix with water @ 1 cup of dry mix into 5 gallons of water to make the tea.

To that 5 gallons of tea add:

  • 5 tbs. Liquid Karma or a good Humic or Fulvic acid
  • 5 tsp. Black Strap Molasses

Use it to water with every 3rd feeding.

Flowering Mix:

  1. 2/3 cup Peruvian Seabird Guano
  2. 2/3 cup Earth Worm Castings
  3. 2/3 cup High P Guano (Indonesian or Jamaican)
  4. 5 tsp. Acadian powdered kelp extract

(Steps 1-4 makes the “dry mix”. You can make all you want and save it to use later.)

Mix with water @ 2 cups of dry mix into 5 gallons of water to make the tea.

To that 5 gallons of tea add:

  • 5 tbs. Liquid Karma or a good Humic or Fulvic acid
  • 5 tsp. Black Strap Molasses
  • Use it to water with EVERY watering.

I use knee-high nylons as teabags, they are cheap and easily purchased at most stores. Add the recommended tea in the nylon, tie a loop knot in it, and hang it in your tea bucket. The tea should look like a mud puddle. Agitate the bag in the water. Use an air pump and air stone to keep the solution oxygenated to keep the good bacteria and microbes alive and multiplying. Allow the tea solution to bubble for at least two days before use. Make sure to adjust the recipe based on the amount of solution you are using. Anytime you are feeding your plants unless you notice a deficiency, less is always more, even in organics.

Sprouted Seed Tea

Seeds have all the enzymes ready to create life and we can harness this with sprouts. Think of this as a do it yourself enzyme tea. This special (simple) tea will change the results of your garden completely and its worth the extra time and effort. Use this weekly or at least once per month especially the closer you get to harvest.

Ingredients: 2 ounces of Organic Barley Seeds

Take your 2 ounces of seeds and soak them for 8-12 hours or so and then rinse well. This is key because you will be rinsing off a compound that inhibits growth on the surface of the seeds and we don’t want this in our finished product. I recommend using store-bought water or RO water, if you are using tap water, then bubble the water with an air stone for 1 hour before using it to soak your seeds.

Once the seeds are soaked and rinsed you can leave them kinda moist in the bottom of the jar and let them sprout over 2-3 days. Once the tails are as long as the seed itself you can then fill the jar with water and let it sit for 3 days or you can blend up the seeds and mix with 5 gallons of water to use right away. This solution can be used as a foliar feed as well, but it only recommended during the veg period of growth.

Step up your organic gardening with our Super Soil Recipes

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