Aerated compost tea is a solution made by brewing compost in aerated water. It is highly beneficial for increasing the nutritional level and growth in plants. Aerated compost tea has also proven useful in increasing the resistance to disease.
The preparation of aerated compost tea is a simple process that requires an aquarium pump, a gang valve, aquarium hose, mature compost, un-sulfured molasses, a straining cloth, and a bucket.
- To make aerated compost tea, you need chlorine-free water. If you are using tap water, use an aquarium pump to bubble the water for a couple of hours and get rid of any chlorine.
- If you want an equal distribution of air throughout the bucket, you will need a gang valve.
- Take 3 pieces of aquarium hose, each piece being at least one foot long, so that it can easily reach the bottom of the bucket. Attach the hoses to the gang valve, and then place the gang valve on the edge of a 5-gallon bucket.
- Add 1 gallon of mature compost in the bucket. Make sure that the compost is loose and airy.
- Add the chlorine-free water in the bucket, filling to about half capacity.
- The micro-organisms need a food source to grow. For this purpose, you can add about an ounce of un-sulfured molasses in the bucket.
- Turn on the aquarium pump, and let the compost tea brew for about 3 days. Stir the mixture occasionally.
- When the compost tea is ready, use a straining cloth and filter it out to another bucket.
- An indication of good compost tea is its smell, which should be earthy and pleasant. If the tea smells bad, it has not been prepared properly and may be harmful to your plants.
- Apply the aerated compost tea immediately after preparation, when the micro-organisms are most active.
- You can use aerated compost tea on the leaves of plants and on the soil. When applied to plant leaves, it acts as a protection against fungi and bacteria. It also provides nutrition to the plant. When added to the soil, aerated compost tea increases the quantity of beneficial micro-organisms in the soil. These micro-organisms help in the retention of nutrients, reduction in toxins, and improve the soil quality.
- When applying the compost tea, never use a sprayer that may contain trace amounts of pesticides or other substances that will kill the micro-organisms in the compost tea.
- Aerated compost tea is more easily absorbed by plants than compost that is mixed in the soil.
- It helps in the reduction of the plant’s requirement for fungicides or other fertilizers.
- The use of aerated compost tea is cost-effective, and is beneficial to the environment.
- Application of aerated compost tea is safe, and it helps in a reduction in the amount of toxins we release into the ecosystem every time we use chemical pesticides or fungicides.
- The aeration process ensures that the tea is high in beneficial microbes, and that the maximum amount of soluble nutrients is extracted. Anaerobic tea, on the other hand, can be harmful to the plants and the soil.