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compost tea

Have you noticed how plants always turn vibrantly green after it rains? This is actually not due to the added water — it’s due to nature’s version of compost tea!

There’s much more nitrogen floating around in the air than there is in the ground. When rain falls from the sky, the water molecules pick up some of that nitrogen and deposit it on the leaves of plants. The leaves can then absorb some of those nutrients through their skin and their pores (called stomata). The nitrogen from the air makes the plant turn green. 

Farmers and gardeners borrow this concept by spraying a diluted, biologically active compost mix directly on the leaves of plants. As a sustainable organic Noni farm, we make our own! 

How to Make Compost Tea:

Basically, we steep organic compost and worm castings (worm poop) in water, and then collect the liquid to use as a foliar spray aka compost tea.

All you need is a good source of organic compost and/or worm castings, and a steeping container. It’s most important to seek out a container that you can oxygenate, to get a more lively, active compost tea.

You can use a fish aquarium, and keep in the aerator pump. Or if you’d like to buy a system, a company called Growing Solutions has a variety of compost tea systems, which all aerate your compost tea as it steeps.

The oxygen allows the populations of the beneficial microbes found in your compost and worm castings to grow into the billions. We also recommend adding just a little molasses to feed your microbes while their population is growing, for best results.

How to Apply

We always spray our compost tea in the late afternoon, because that timing works out best for a plant’s respiration cycle. Plants are busy photosynthesizing in morning and early afternoon, and the stomata (pores) in their leaves close up to prevent much-needed water from evaporating in the heat of the day. In the late afternoon, those pores open up and will stay open all night allowing compost tea nutrients to be absorbed.

Just give your leaves a good spray of compost tea and you’ll be on your way to greener, happier plants that produce more nutritious fruits and vegetables!