[permaculture] compost tea, oxygen & molasses

Lawrence London lfljvenaura at gmail.com
Wed Jun 3 23:49:56 EDT 2015

On Wed, Jun 3, 2015 at 10:41 PM, Robyn Francis <robyn at permaculture.com.au>

> I didn’t notice a clear answer to the original question about DO levels in
> compost tea - thread got a bit off topic...

This may be what you are looking for, X-posted from the compost_tea list:

Has anyone else noticed the interesting parallels between biodynamic horn
manure prep and compost teas? (See footnote for details)

 *I'd say the parallel is with compost and horn manure prep.......... by
the time you bury a horn filled with manure in the ground, made sure there
is good moisture, and worms, protozoa, nematodes and microarthropods are
also present, for the 9 months horn manure is supposed to be in the ground,
then all the manure is very well composted by movement of all those
organisms into the manure.  The horn adds all sorts of nutrients to the
manure, if the organisms are present and functioning properly.  *

What DO should I be aiming for in my brew to maintain enough content for my
organisms at peak reproduction rate (assuming I have lots in my compost to
start with)?

*Minimum DO of 6 ppm.  Better to run above that.  Even better, be checking
hte liquid to make sure only the beneficial organisms are growing.  Do NOT
want to see ciliates, rotifers, spirilla, spirochetes, streptococci, or
yeasts.  You DO want to see lots of wide diameter, colored fungi with
uniform septa, high diversity of short to long, fat to wide rod-shaped
bacteria (the cocci will be dime a dozen), and beneficial protozoa.   *

 Why on earth does she recommend molasses?

 *Not sure what she you are referring to, but molasses ONLY if you need
more bacteria ----- which is NOT the case with most ag soils.  *

Elaine R. Ingham
President, Soil Foodweb Inc.       Soil Life Consultant
Since I travel a great deal, please consider that I may miss e-mails so if
I don't answer within 3 days, please try again.

> To keep the tea aerobic, the oxygen level needs to be 5.5 ppm. Ask in an
> aquarium shop and they’ll show which air pumps will do the job for the
> quantity you’re making. We generally do 20 - 40 Litre (5-10 gal) batches so
> our pump can provide 5.5 ppm for up to 40 litres. We don’t use an aerating
> stone (they get blocked and reduce the O2 flow), just have the air tube
> weighted down to bubble from the bottom of the container.
> SFW recommend that you don't leave it for more than 3 hours without
> aeration, as it then becomes anaerobic, so that gives a guide for
> application time.
> For vegetable crops and grasslands the molasses (or sugar) is important to
> feed the beneficial bacteria.  Molasses is not used in the fungal-dominated
> compost teas made for tree-based systems.
> This is the compost tea recipe we make here:
> 40 liters water (10 gal)
> 60ml (2 Tblsp) humic acid – diluted in 1 cup water
> 120ml (4) Tblsp kelp extract – diluted in 1 cup water
> 2 Tblsp molasses (or dark brown sugar. NB do not use honey) - dissolved
> into 1 cup water
> Add the above to the water and commence aeration, the suspend the bag or
> stocking holding the compost/worm castings:
> 500ml  (2 cups) container of compost
> 500ml  (2 cups) container of worm casting
> 1 cup of probiotic liquid (whey of yogurt, kefir or curd cheese; kambucha;
> liquid from sauerkraut or kimchee)
> Aerate for 24-30 hours. In cool weather it might need to brew for 2-3 days.
> Sometimes we check the brew under the microscope and do a count of what’s
> in there (bacteria, amoeba, fungi etc)
> Robyn
> > On 20 May 2015, at 5:20 pm, Steve Hart <stevenlawrencehart at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> >
> >> The compost tea discussion in question involved exploring ways to keep
> >> AACT,
> >> aerobically activated compost tea, aerobic through the time of field
> >> application.
> >> Court mentioned a study done that showed flowforms oxygenated liquids
> >> flowing through them.
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Lawrence F. London
lfljvenaura at gmail.com
Ello: @ecoponderosa <https://ello.co/ecoponderosa>

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