Microbes play an important role in the health and growth of plants. Beneficial microbes, including bacteria and fungi, help plants predigest their food, breaking down dead plant material to make the necessary nutrients to promote new growth available. In exchange, the plant can feed these “miners” their excess sugars, creating a beautiful symbiotic relationship.

Compost Tea is an extremely effective method to introduce these microbes – which build up a plant’s immune system, protect them from the sun, and resist pests and diseases – to your plants. Compost Tea can be applied to the plants in your garden with a watering can or in a spray bottle to coat the plants.

Our Seattle based chef, Brian Dawson, shares YouTuber MIgardener‘s recipe for Compost Tea with us in honor of Earth Day.

Ingredients

  • 5 gallons water (allow to sit for at least 24 hours in open air to dechlorinate, if using city tap water)
  • 1/4 cup molasses, unsulphured
  • 3 tbsp. humid acid
  • 1/4 cup rock dust
  • 1/4 cup  seabird guano 
  • 3 cups worm castings
  • 3 tbsp. fish emulsion w/kelp (optional)

Instructions

  1. Drop a fish tank bubbler stone into the bottom of your 5 gallon pickle bucket filled with water (after letting water sit for 24 hours, if applicable).
  2. Pour in the remaining ingredients and let the mixture bubble for a day or so. The bubbles that form on top of the brew are digestive gases emitting from our garden guests (a good thing). The bubbles begin to fade over a few days. When this happens, add more molasses to get the mixture to start bubbling again.
  3. Apply the mixture liberally to garden plant and soil surfaces. Spread throughout your whole garden!