Composting is nothing new in commercial farming. However, few farmers grasp how efficiently and effectively compost tea functions as an organic alternative to chemical fertilizers. It also has a powerful byproduct that can help to stretch compost even further throughout a season. The benefits of using compost tea alongside compost are innumerable, not least because it takes no extra effort or time to make. It’s easy to add this helpful supplement into any farming operation.
What Is Compost Tea?
As the name suggests, compost tea is a tea that comes from finished compost. The term tea here refers to the steeping period. Essentially, one adds an amount of quality compost to a container and then fills it with water. This water can have its mix of nutrition or even contain a starter culture of a specific bacteria strain.
You then seal the container and leave the compost to sit submerged in the water. Over time, the bacteria in the compost expands into the water and spreads. Gradually, this larger colony consumes the compost until nothing remains. Once this is complete, you can spread it. For commercial operations, the best vessels are large 250- to 500-gallon compost tea brewers. These vessels can turn a ton of compost into enough tea to hydrate 650 acres.
Should I Use Compost or Tea?
People often become confused by the similarities between actual compost and teas made from it. Many people think that the choice is between the two. In truth, a farm benefits most from both methods. Compost in its raw form provides structure to the soil in addition to recycled nutrients. This helps protect fields from erosion and makes irrigation much more effective. Teas are made directly from compost, so they have the same applications. Mainly the benefits of using compost tea are the nutrition and water together. For the best results when building an organic onsite fertilization system, apply both techniques at once.
Common Ways Compost Tea Helps
Tea has the same nutritional benefits as compose. Since it is primarily a liquid, it lacks the structure benefit. However, teas allow farmers to cultivate batches of target bacteria strategically to help their crops. It’s also a great method to supplement plain hydration with additional nutrients. In short, teas are easy to make way to spread the goodness of composting to a broader selection of plants.
Typically, compost will only cover so many acres, and mixing it back into a field is highly concentrated. Teas break down the nutrition of compost to make it easier to spread. That means you can apply it more readily at any point in a crop’s growth cycle. Boost plant health by give it more access to compost and supplementing a planted field’s ongoing nutritional balance all season long.
Midwest Bio-Systems strives to guide farmers into a new era of greener fertilizing techniques. We share existing and innovative ways that farms can start composting to save money and boost profit. Reach out today to talk to one of our representatives about our commercial composting equipment. We also offer training to teach the benefits and best techniques for effective, high-production composting.