Home gardening has becoming increasingly popular, while most of the people go on an annual big box store shopping for soil and fertilizer to start off their gardening season, my question is: Does that have to be the only way to start your garden? The short answer is no. The idea of reducing our consumption and carbon foot print is something we want to be more conscious about as a consumer nowadays, we can certainly do better than buying store available gardening materials.
In Toronto and the GTA, we are very fortunate to have a good recycling and organics waste collecting system run by the city. While doing our part to collect waste and hand them off to the city deal with it is good, there’s an even better way that will benefit your garden crops, reduce the amount of household organics waste and save your (and the city’s) money.
In this two-part Easy Gardening DIY series, we are going to show you a few different ways to make your own fertilizer and compost at home. Since it is the beginning of June as we are writing, let’s start with the different ways to make your own fertilizer so you can be on your way to a healthy newly established garden.
If you have some compost left over from setting up your garden, you can use it to make liquid fertilizer. All you need is well-aged compost and water in a bucket or a large jar. Fill the 1/4 to 1/3 full with compost, add water till full, cover with lid loosely or make one or two small holes for circulation. Stir daily or cover the jar to shake daily to aerate it so the beneficial micro-organism and bacteria can help with the fermentation process. The compost tea will be ready in as short as 2 to 3 days, you will know it is ready when there’s smell present. This compost tea can be apply directly to the soil of the base of the plant or apply after filtered, dilute it 1 part to 8 part water and apply as a foliage spray.
Weed and trimmings tea
If you have a yard that have weeds being pulled, trees or plants being trimmed and grass being mowed, you can make liquid fertilizer! Just put the weeds, leaves, small branches and grass clippings in bucket, add water, cover it loosely so there’s still some air circulation. Stir occasionally and apply when the tea has little bit of smell and when you can see the greens decomposing a little. You can do this outside the house or on your balcony.
🌱✨🌱✨🌱✨🌱✨🌱 How I make my Magic Juice (Liquid Fertiliser) . . ✨1&2. In this batch I used borage cuttings that needed tidying up and pulled up grass that was sneaking up through my mulch. ✨3. In a bucket that has a fitted lid I put the plant matter in and filled to the top with water. ✨4. I secured the lid and placed the bucket out of the way (under my potting table) to ferment for 4 weeks. 4 weeks in summer and I would ferment for 6 weeks in winter. ✨5. Once fermentation has been achieved I stir the stinking mass of magic then remove the solids and keep the liquid. ✨6. In a separate container I prepare the mix for the garden. The ratio is 1:10 ✨7. One part magic juice to ten parts water it should look like weak tea. ✨8. In the afternoons, I pour a serving of the magic juice to whatever part of the garden I feel needs it at that time. ✨ I make different batches using different ingredients, for example an organic cow manure batch, a seaweed batch, other varieties of plant cuttings and a chicken manure batch. In addition to Magic Juice, I use worm tea from my worm farm. #organicgardening #growfoodnotlawns
Just made a batch of liquid compost with happy nutrient snatching weeds from my greenhouse. I'll mix it every day or so for a month then strain it and take back those nutrients they stole and use it as a fertilizer in the same greenhouse they came from 😁🤙🏾 don't forget to make yours…..hahaha #homemadeisthebest #liquidfertilizer #nochemicals #backyardfarmer #ilikemakingthings
Vegetable scraps tea
If you cook vegetables at home, you can make liquid fertilizer! The idea is the same as the above, you put a good amount of kitchen scraps in a bucket or container, add water, cover the container loosely, stir occasionally and apply when the liquid has some colour to it as well as having a little smell. You want to use vegetable scraps only and not any meat or grease.
Some #jadam #liquidfertilizer in the make. Following #nature example is the most cost effective, easy and productive way of #regenerating and #rebuildingsoil our soil. This will be a fantastic fertilizer for the remaining tomatoes 🍅 that will make it into the fall, and will help regenerate the soil for next years plants. #notill ever.
In the next article, we will talk about how to make compost at home, what can goes into a compost pile may surprise you. Stay tune to see how home composting can help you attempt a zero waste lifestyle!