How To Make Worm Tea | Grow Big Plants Now | Green Thumb Gardener

How To Make Worm Tea | Grow Big Plants Now

Using a liquid fertilizer for growing vegetables at home is good, but you have to be careful with some of them. 

Being a failure at home gardening was an embarrassing situation so every time I ventured out I avoided the glances. However, I needed a quick solution to save my garden and vegetables so I could put food on the table.

Fortunately a neighbor told me about worm compost tea and my gardening failure simply vanished. However, my brief encounter with a gardening disaster affected me so strongly I’ve decided to share my recent success to you, so let’s delve into what worm compost tea is all about.

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What is Worm Compost Tea?

When you steep or soak a tea bag full of worm castings (earthworm excretions) in water, the end result is worm tea. 
The worm castings are also called vermicompost and while they can produce the same worm compost tea but have different names, the impact they have on any soil is fantastic.
Your gardening will experience a boost as the worm tea slowly percolates into the soil. Why? As the worm tea travels down the soil profile it will do some amazing things. It will
Activate microbiological activity in the soil.
It does this by adding the following soil enriching materials
  • Bacteria
  • Fungi
  • Actinomycetes
  • Protozoa
how to make worm tea
The difficult part in making worm compost tea is to have access to worm castings or vermicompost but it won’t be an issue if you are already engaged in worm farming.
If not, you’d need to start your own worm farm by using the many worm kits available on the market.

Worm Tea Vs Worm Castings?

By now we should be able to easily tell the difference between worm tea and worm castings. 

We now know that worm tea is produced from worm castings that have been steeped in water overnight and before use, it is thoroughly diluted with about 5 gallons of water before it can be applied to the soil in its “liquid gold” form.

Solid Worm Castings

Worm castings on the other hand is solid waste formed from the excretions of earthworms and in their pure form contain a myriad of organic materials which can actually add nutrients not only to plants but also as a supplement for poor soil. 

This means it can be used in its raw form to revitalize poor soil by its nutritious presence in the soil. 

More important is that it contains large quantities of plant nutrients such as phosphorus, calcium, potassium and magnesium among other plant nutrients.

More important is that it contains large quantities of plant nutrients such as phosphorus, calcium, potassium and magnesium among other plant nutrients. #worms, #composting, #prepping

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Liberal Amounts of Both Won’t Harm Plants

Being in liquid form that contains all the plant nutrients present in worm castings, you would be able to drench your garden bed with the liquid gold and be assured your plants would get all the nutrients they need. 

You don’t have to be careful how you apply it because you can wet the roots, stems and even the leaves without any detrimental consequences. 

Make sure however that you dilute it well with a copious amount of water (five gallons over and above the amount you have in the bucket you use for seeping should do it).

From Solid to Nutrient in a Jiffy

We also know that because worm castings are in solid form, plant nutrients contained in them are also in solid form but are soluble. 

So while worm tea already contains the plant nutrients in solution, the nutrients in worm castings are yet to be dissolved so plants can use them. But here’s the beauty about these soil and plant boosters. 

Both of them can be directly applied to the soil in their present state.

The Best Nutrient Provider on the Planet

Worm castings can be placed in the soil in as much quantity as is needed and don’t be too finicky or worried when you apply it to your soil. 

They will be absorbed into the soil the minute they hit the surface and as for burning the roots or plant stems, forget it! 

Once they’re in the soil they’ll do wonders to your vegetable or crop by boosting their growth with its arsenal full of all kinds of nutrients. 

By the way, you can also find carbon, nitrogen, zinc, iron, copper, cobalt, borax and…embedded in worm castings to nourish your veggies with or whatever you’re growing.

Leachate vs. Worm Compost Tea

Mentioning leachate here heralds a possible flaw in what has been a rather smooth and risk free interaction and co-existence between worm tea and worm castings. The break lies in the occurrence of leachate. 

What is it?

It’s simply liquid runoff that seeps through the system and collects at or below where the worm castings or vermicomposter are at. 
So if you do have a composter, be sure to make periodic checks to ensure that leachate doesn’t accumulate at the bottom of your worm factory as dire consequences may overwhelm your veggie plants!
how to make worm tea

The Reason Why

Phytotoxins are harmful to all plants as well as humans and are manufactured by bacteria. One strain of toxin known as pathogens is found in leachate. 
The pathogen wasn’t broken down in the worm’s intestine and is harmful to humans and shouldn’t be applied to edible vegetable plants. The reason is obvious for as waste decomposes it releases pathogen bearing liquid which in fact is the leachate. 
Hence the reason why this contaminated liquid should be prevented from accumulating in the vermicomposter. Even its use as a liquid fertilizer is questionable and you should be very careful when thinking about using it.

Precautionary Measures

If for any reason you do decide to use the leachate, the onus is on you to make sure you follow these critically important steps and please make sure you abide by them always to avoid any problems that may take place as a result of your lax outlook:
  1. NEVER use the leachate if it exudes a bad smell and don’t just dump it anywhere and certainly not on plants along the driveway or roadway where it can quickly drain into drainage gutters and away from homes.
  2. ALWAYS dilute leachate with lots of water in the ratio of 10:1 or 10 parts of water to 1 part of leachate.
  3. AERATE the leachate and add more oxygen to improve its quality if you have the equipment, otherwise, safely dispose of it as quickly as you can.
  4. ALWAYS use outdoors to water only your shrubs, decorative or flowering plants.
  5. DO NOT use it on plants like vegetable plants and fruits which you intend to eat.

A method packed with plant nutrients you never thought existed known as “worm tea”.  #gardentips, #compost, #allotment, #preppers

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How to Make Worm Compost Tea

Have you ever experienced that elevated feeling of accomplishment, of being fruitful, of satisfaction and of glee when you look down or up at the leafy greens and tubers or the hanging fruits you planted yourself? 
I’m sure you have and it’s a nice feeling is it not?
Well, you now have the perfect method of fertilizing your garden. A worm compost tea bag packed with plant nutrients you never thought existed.  This worm compost tea will
It’s not a treat for your palate but your plants are going to love it from the first minute you use it on them and during all the years hence. 
We’ve covered what this organic tea bag. So let’s dive into how to make worm compost tea from worm castings.
Here are the materials you need:
  • Porous Mesh tea bag – any type of bag or cloth which will hold the castings as it’s seeped in water
  • Use rainwater, pond water or distilled water (must not be chlorinated)
  • Bucket (with 5 gallon holding capacity will be ideal)
  • Worm castings (the castings should fill about one tenth of the bucket)
  • Organic Molasses (optional)
  • Aquarium pump with aeration stone, fish tank bubbler
  • Watering Can, spray bottle or other container to distribute the worm compost tea
What do you do next?
Follow the steps listed below to make your first supply of worm tea:
  1. Fill up the porous tea bag with worm castings or vermicompost
  2. Steep the bag with content using the types of water recommended above
  3. Allow the bag to be immersed underwater overnight. A light brown color means the worm tea is ready for use. Mind you, aerated water spurs microbe activity in the bucket so you could use a bubbler to add more oxygen to your worm tea solution.
  4. Dilute the worm tea with more water. First, remove everything from the bucket containing the worm tea and add five gallons of water to your one bucket of worm tea.

How to Use Worm Tea

You may well ask as to how you water your plants with the worm tea. There are three simple steps to guide you along that path:
1.    Best delivery option – Narrow down your options as to the type of watering can to use between an ordinary can or a spray bottle. Both are ideal but the choosing is up to you according to your own circumstances.

Clogging up of the sprayer has been known to happen so use a strain to rid your tea of lumpy material that might clog up your sprayer.
2.    Watering plants with worm tea – Worm compost tea is such a dynamic organic fertilizer it’s not fussy where and on what it spreads its goodies. You can use it on your vegetable gardens outside or your decorative plants indoors, the results are amazingly the same! It doesn’t.

It doesn’t just boost the soil, it also prevents disease from gaining a foothold on your soil or plants.
3.    Secure any leftover tea – Once you’ve watered your plants and find you have some leftover tea, don’t waste it by throwing it away. Carefully store it in a safe place but make sure you don’t cover it up.

The swimming microorganisms in it also need oxygen to survive so be kind and let oxygen in. To be on the safe side, it would be better if you use a new batch of tea each time you water your plants.
You’ll gradually learn approximately how much worm compost tea you’ll need to use each watering round so that waste is kept at a minimum.

Final Thoughts

I bet you never knew what worm tea was and what wonders it can do to your planting activities did you? 
You may have even thought it was all about drinking tea but was something else entirely different and new to you! 
Well, now you know what it is, how to make it and how to use it in your garden to get fantastic productive results .
More importantly, you now know you have a miracle maker, a wonder booster for your garden, that’s literally packed with all the essential nutrients (none missing if I may say so), to revitalize and energize your garden and changing it into a beehive of hyper-productive activity. 
Till next time.
Green Thumb Gardener
how to make worm tea

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