Need Info on Compost Tea

I would like to ask a couple questions on making and using compost tea:
- Does it really work? Do I expect to see larger crop, bigger flowers, ...etc? Can someone tell me some "before and after" stories?
- Can it rejuvenate lawn grass that is kind of thinning out?
- Does it smell just like normal compost piles? BTW, I don't think normal compost piles stinky at all.
- How big the container do I need? My property is fairly small (1/4 acre), and my flower garden and vegetable garden are proportionally smaller. I intend to mainly use it on flower garden and vegetable garden, and also apply it in some areas of my lawn to rejuvenate the grass -- and I intend to apply it every two weeks. Will a 5-gal bucket be big enough? Do I need a 32-gal container?
- I am thinking of using aquarium air pump to aerate the compost tea. How big should I get? I have found the following aquarium air pumps from PETCO: PROFILE 1500 Single Outlet for 20 gal fish tank PROFILE 2900 Single Outlet for 30 gal fish tank PROFILE 4000 Double Outlet for 50 gal fish tank PROFILE 9500 Double Outlet for 100 gal fish tank I have a feeling that those ratings are for fish tanks, and are not directly comparable to the size of the tank for making compost tea. Somehow, I need to translate the ratings to the corresponding ratings for making compost tea. Can someone share his/her experience in selecting an aquarium air pump. Obviously, I want the air pump to be a bit oversized just in cases of: (1) wanting to simultaneously aerate other buckets of water to remove chlorine from my water before I can use the water to dilute the compost tea, (2) needing to use a bigger container.
- Can I simply use sugar as the food source for making compost tea instead of using unsulfured molasses as suggested in a couple sources? What's so significant about unsulfured molasses anyway? The host in the TV show "Gardening by the Yard" suggested using sugar.
Thanks in advance for any help.
Jay Chan
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 9 Jul 2003 19:48:58 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Jay Chan) wrote:

Yes it works. I give one dose a week to potted dwarf citrus and they explode in leaves and blooms.

A waste of good tea. Better idea would be to dump the solid waste on the lawn and make a garden.

Depends on what is composted

Yes, no

You dont need an expensive pump, as long as it's not left out for several days. 5 minutes of dunking and stirring up the bag will be enough. There's a very good chance debris would quickly clog the filter, anyhow.

Sugar will attract predators, and especially ants.
Dan
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
(Jay Chan) wrote:

I've used compost tea on citrus, various herbs and potted flowers with no significant difference in growth or blooms. As well, I used compost tea as an experiment on a percentage of Coffee Arabica plants (-vs- plants with chemical fertilizer, liquid seaweed, no fertilizer, etc.) and they actually performed among the worst, with a high mortality rate.
While compost tea may be a good addition to many plant "diets", it is certainly no miracle fertilizer. In fact, I have blooms and fruit galore on about 30 different citrus varieties without the use of any fertilizer in months. By the way, I operate a plant nursery and we are constantly looking for ways to improve plant performance and overall viability (keeping the health of our customers in mind).
If you really want a "natural" means of more blooms, greener leaves and higher fruit yield, buy a box of Epsom Salt. It really works and is the one additive that we always keep on hand.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Sound very promising.

I find my flower garden and vegetable garden demand a lot more of my time than my lawn when taking the size of the garden and the lawn into consideration. I don't think I will expand the size of the garden any time soon.

Great. This means I don't need to worry about the smell. I intend to use the same stuff from my compost piles to make compost tea. If the stuff isn't stinky in my compost piles, it will not be stinky in the compost tea (provided that I make the compost tea correctly).

I assume you suggest that I only need to use a 5-gal bucket. Thanks.

This is new to me. I thought we need to keep pumping air into the mix in order to get good tea.
I didn't think of the possibility of clogging the filter either. I wonder how people who use air pump avoid this problem. Thanks for the warning.

I didn't think of the possibility of attracting ants. I will need to put a moat around it. Thanks for the warning again.
I will get everything ready today, and hopefully I can get some compost tea by this Sunday.
Jay Chan
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
http://www.foodwebonline.com/chapter1.htm
On 9 Jul 2003 19:48:58 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Jay Chan) wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.