[compostteas] More compost tea resources, EM, KNF, IMO, etc. Was: pc aquaponics

Lawrence London lfljvenaura at gmail.com
Wed Oct 10 14:37:35 EDT 2012

It would seem to me that an ideal aquaponics system, for those who live
near the ocean, would be one using fresh, clean, pure ocean saltwater,
which has such an amazing array of trace minerals: why is seaweed so
nutritious for you?. Ideal fish to grow would be (on the East coast US and
maybe elsewhere), talk about a cash crop: founder, "sea squab" (maybe some
kind of blowfish, can't remember the actual name) which can be caught in NC
and is better even than swordfish, has two big filets, herring and herring
roe, an especially delicious delicacy which can be scrambled with a little
egg to give it body, and if a suitable environment for it: mackerel,
Spanish mackerel, prawns, shrimp, crayfish (these three require flowing
cold water.

Look at the group of posts I sent for more info on making "compost tea" to
introduce into the system. I still like the perforated barrel with soil
method for growing crops like ginger, galangal, turneric (which are
difficult crops for all but warm or tropical climates but are essential in
one's diet. The barrel system would allow backflushing into the site's
water system introducing nutrients, minerals and beneficial microorganisms.

In the interest of locally-grown, local food systems and community gardens
any aquaponics or  hydroponics system should be scalable so that at least a
simple system can be installed and used by anyone with a backyard garden
and, in cold season, a greenhouse, attached or freestanding. There must be
locally available, affordable, off the shelf components and materials that
could be used to put together a functioning system that works reliability,
even for entry-level people and groups. The "neighborhood fish and
vegetable water gardens" sounds appealing.

Three more items of interest:

1. YouTube videos of aquaponics and hydroponics systems, mostly homebrew.
Amazing resource.
2. My compostteas mailing list:
3. Jeff Lowenfels list:
compost_tea · Compost Teas, The Soil Food Web & Soils

This list is for the discussion and dissemination of information primarily
about modern compost teas, compost tea making and related topics such as
composts, compost extracts, the workings of the soil food web and soil
microbiology as applied to gardening and agriculture. It is a moderated
list so when discussions get too far from the main subject the moderator
will step in. Polite interactions are a must at all times. Rudeness and
disrespect can result in immediate banishment. It is highly suggested that
you buy and read Timber Press' "Teaming With Microbes: A Gardener's Guide
to The Soil Food Web" by Jeff Lowenfels and Wayne Lewis (with a preface by
Dr. Elaine Ingham), available from Amazon.com. It explains the soil food
web in lay and fun terms. In addition, you should review materials
available from Soil Food Web, Inc at www.soilfoodweb.com, particularly the
Compost Tea Manual. Finally, if you would like to see pictures of compost
tea organisms, good tea and more, check out
http://www.microbeorganics.com/and order the CD when you are finished.

This list is the best on the Web. It has a longstanding community of
experts with extensive knowledge and experience who will answer questions.
If you plan to use any type of compost
tea in an aquaponics system you should join this list make use of it.

It started at ibiblio with a user-friendly Mailman list then migrated to
Yahoo with a non-user-friendly group. I took over the original list and
maintain it. There is a gap in the archives so members of Jeff's list sent
me archives most of of the missing posts which I have turned into web
archives in my website at ibiblio. I posted links to these archives to
Jeff's compost_tea list but they are not listed at the Yahoo homepage for
that forum. I have several more posts to make today about compost tea
resources and related message archives and will post links to
all existing ones I can find. I just located some important ones of mine
that I had forgotten about plus an excellent old one for the biodynamics
list. I can convert any portion of any of my Thunderbird email folders to
Web-accessable, indexed, sortable web archives. I will probably upload all
compost_tea list messages to my ibiblio website on an ongoing basis. Of
course, you will need to join that list if you want to participate or ask

Here are some quick links to newly-discovered forum archives:

Indigenous Microorganisms + Korean Natural Farming Association

Supplemental Resources on Effective Microorganisms
(EM) and Indigenous Microorganisms (IMO)


4. Jeff Lowenfels excellent book: "Teaming With Microbes"
 Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web,
Revised Edition [Hardcover]  Jeff
Lewis <http://www.amazon.com/Wayne-Lewis/e/B004RRBAME/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_2><http://www.amazon.com/Teaming-Microbes-Organic-Gardeners-Revised/dp/1604691131#>(Author)
$16.50 + shipping from Amazon
 Publication Date: February 24, 2010
 The 2011 Garden Writers of America Gold Award for Best Writing/Book proves
soil is anything but an inert substance. Healthy soil is teeming with life
-- not just earthworms and insects, but a staggering multitude of bacteria,
fungi, and other microorganisms. When we use chemical fertilizers, we
injure the microbial life that sustains healthy plants, and thus become
increasingly dependent on an arsenal of artificial substances, many of them
toxic to humans as well as other forms of life. But there is an alternative
to this vicious circle: to garden in a way that strengthens, rather than
destroys, the soil food web -- the complex world of soil-dwelling organisms
whose interactions create a nurturing environment for plants. By eschewing
jargon and overly technical language, the authors make the benefits of
cultivating the soil food web available to a wide audience, from devotees
of organic gardening techniques to weekend gardeners who simply want to
grow healthy, vigorous plants without resorting to chemicals.

On Wed, Oct 10, 2012 at 10:42 AM, Toby Hemenway <toby at patternliteracy.com>wrote

> Thanks, again, Kathryn, for being so nicely rational. I think you're spot
> on about the "gadgety" nature of aquaponics being a turn-off for a lot of
> us natural types. I'd like to add that plants spent a few hundred million
> years evolving in the sea before crawling onto land, so they have a long
> genetic legacy within them of living without soil and soil-penetrating
> roots.
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