"compost Tea"

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by Daner, Nov 5, 2007.

  1. Daner

    Daner LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

    Hey all:) Lets blend some tea

    What do we need to make this amazing stuff ,that's so good for our lawns?

    I My self, have made manure tea, just by adding horse manure to water and "leaving It to brew"

    I would like to here your thoughts on brewing teas...from basic...like I have done In the past to the more sophisticated brews.:)
    Thanks for your Input.
  2. Gerry Miller

    Gerry Miller LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 504

  3. Daner

    Daner LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

  4. Gerry Miller

    Gerry Miller LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 504

    Hi Daner;

    Yes, I've been making my own AACT for about 3 years now. I started out using the home made system called the 'Deuley's Little Texas Tea Brewer' that can be found at http://dchall.home.texas.net/organic/teamaker/

    One of the things that very important is the clean up after your brewing cycle to be sure to remove any build up of biofilm that can ruin any future brews. Using the Deuley's system was a real pain in the clean up area. While it was relatively cheap to build and it would produce OK tea, the clean up made me look for another system. Then after doing a lot of research, I purchased the KIS brewing system:

    Since it's critical to know if your system is producing the aerobic soil organisms you want to apply to your plants, testing is a necessary part of the process, even though it can be expensive. Not only does your compost need to be tested, your tea needs to be tested as well to make sure your system and you are following correct protocol. That was one of the huge benefits of using the KIS brewing system is that they have tested for you, the system as well as the compost and food kits to provide high level of organisms you need. Takes all the testing out of the question. My brewing time would be between 18 and 24 hours and then applied immediately.

    I use the pro kits that are described in detail on the KIS web site. I have been very happy with the performance of these products. My lawn and flower gardens has never looked better. I don't have the compaction and draining problems I had previously to using AACT. While not scientific test results, I've seen the improvements.

    They make systems to fit anyone's needs along with the customer service support to make sure of your success. I highly recommend their system. I know of at least 30 other people that use this the KIS systems and all swear by them!
  5. tadhussey

    tadhussey LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 294


    Manure tea is different than the compost tea that Gerry is talking about. When we're talking about compost tea, it typically mean AACT or actively aerated compost tea. This selects for the beneficial, aerobic organisms that we want. Manure tea is problematic because it raises the issue of culturing the known pathogens in the manure (e. coli, etc..). If the manure has been fully composted, then it is fine to use in the tea (all the pathogens should be undetectable).

    It's amazing to look at the tea under a microscope if you have the opportunity. You can actually see the protozoa, bacteria, and fungi.

    What kind of system were you interested in either buying or creating?

  6. Daner

    Daner LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

    Ahh...Ok...But what about for a crusty ole farmer like me...I would like to know how to make...lets call It a back woodsy kinda brew.

    a teaspoon of this and a dash of that...an old air pump from the ole 49 dodge.
    There must be a good ole home fashion way to make CT.
  7. tadhussey

    tadhussey LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 294


    It is possible to make it yourself. You may not get as good of results though, but you could still produce something beneficial. Let's start with this:

    1. What equipment do you already have?

    2. Any access to things like liquid humic or kelp?

    3. What compost would you use?
  8. Daner

    Daner LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

    I have no kelp or humic
    Compost...not the muck stuff I was talking about in the Black gold thread.
    I do have that 1700 gal tank...but cant use that now...winter is here...I do have other small tanks hoses etc:waving: ...help me to get on the right track.
  9. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,206

    I started using the set-up by Soil Soup....it is a five gallon size. You can buy everything from them to brew.
  10. Gerry Miller

    Gerry Miller LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 504

    Unfortunately, Soil Soup machines will not produce any fungi. It's not a very good system to use.

    Here is another link on how to make your own AACT.

    But the step by step procedure is in that soilfooldweb.com link. It contains everything you need.

    The basics would be:

    Dechlorinated water - believe it or not, critical
    Good compost home made that has been tested or purchased with lab results
    The right kind of food for what you are trying to produce, such as fungal foods or bacterial foods
    Proper aeration for your brew
    Proper brewing time - This varies with equipment used
    Temperature control and not to be made in direct sunlight
    I use a tea bag for the compost which is made from material that is 400 microns in size. This size is critical and needs to be accurate.
    Proper clean up of equipment after brewing

    Soil FoodWeb also sells a Compost Tea Manual that has all the info.

    It's difficult to explain the entire proper procedure in short posts like these.

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