Manure Tea – Best Natural Fertilizer?

If you’re growing your own food you need your plot to be as fertile as possible.  Manure is the small-holders best tool for improving fertility quickly.  If you have a supply of manure then making up some manure tea or manure water is a quick way of ensuring plants have a soluble supply of all the nutrients they require.

Make Manure Tea / Manure Water

  • Fill a bucket 1/3 full of manure.
  • Fill up with water and put on a not too tight lid.
  • Leave the manure water for two weeks to ferment and allow nutrients to dissolve.
  • Dissolve the manure tea with ten times as much water and use.  The brew applied to plants should look the colour of week tea.
  • Keep topping up the manure water bucket with more water as you use it to ensure a continual supply.

This is a great ‘pick me up’ or reviver for plants which have gone through ‘troubled times’ such as club root or bad weather.  It is also useful to apply as crops first start cropping as a booster feed.  We use it on tomatoes, aubergines and peppers until fruit starts to set.

In the long term a self sufficient gardener would be looking to improve the soil en-mass with regular compost and manure applications so this ad-hoc feed would be rarely needed.  But as you start to improve your soil’s fertility this quick-fix solution can be invaluable.

To make compost water or seaweed tea use exactly the same method described above.  You will need to rinse some of the salt from your seaweed haul before making the seaweed tea.  Seaweed tea is probably the best as seaweed seems to contain every nutrient a plant could want.  But as ever, use whatever you can get your hands on.

manure-tea

Basically you’re making your own liquid fertilizer which can even be used as a foliar feed (though not on the bits you want to eat any time soon).  Even if you were buying or bartering in manure this is a very cheap way of making liquid feeds which are ecologically sound too due to the absence of chemicals.  And, if you’re using compost or manure produced on your own vegetable plot, or seaweed picked locally yourself, this is a free organic liquid feed.  You can’t get better than that.

For a more self sufficient future

82 Responses to “Manure Tea – Best Natural Fertilizer?”

Read below or add a comment...

  1. JamesM says:

    Thanks for the advice. Just off to buy organic chicken sh*t – hope that’s as good as cow pats etc.
    J

    ps I have just found your blog as I was searching for manure water. It looks very useful for those of us interested in self-sufficiency/low-impact/… Thanks very much.

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Glad you found us. Chicken sh*t is full of goodness but very concentrated. It’s what we use, just don’t throw it around when fresh or it can be too good and burn plants.

    [Reply]

    Steve McCreery Reply:

    Enjoy your website. I am making some tea as I write using llama pellets. From what I’ve read llama poo is highest in N, P and K than cow, horse, chicken, pig or sheep and it doesn’t burn your plants. We’ll let you know how it works.

    [Reply]

  2. Tina Phelashio says:

    manure tea sparayed on plants is dangerous. what were you thinking??? if you want to use manure, let it rot for a couple years and then till it under the soil weeks before you plant. this is a much safer way to use manure.

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Hi Tina,

    We’ve used manure tea for years with no problems. The manure is always rotted first and then ferments further in the ‘tea’. Primarily we pour it on the ground around plants as a liquid feed, but it can be used as a foliar feed too (not on edible leaves though obviously)

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  3. Manure tea? Is that the brown goo shown in the picture? Gross!!! I would never make it, spray it on my veggies, or pour it anywhere near them. I use well rotted compost mixed well in the hole under, and around my tomatoes. I usually pick 30-40 nice tomatoes off of each plant…sometimes more. It is a risk to use manure tea due to possible ecoli poisoning. A fly can land in the tea, then land on an edible vegetable. If the vegetable is eaten the person may become sick or worse. The risk of manure tea outweighs the benefit.

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Not sure how many times I need to say this but our manure has been composting in a big pile before it goes into my manure tea! Just like farmers have always done. Manure is brilliant plant food! To waste all that nutrition is madness.

    [Reply]

  4. I see why they call you dirty boots…
    Even if you rot the feces it is still rotten feces.
    Then, by adding water to it, the bacteria comes right back…ECOLI SOUP! It is a tricky endeavor at best and can make people very sick. In fact many people were dying last year due to stupid ideas like this.

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Oh dear, sorry we’ve upset you Betty. The soil is full of all sorts of bacteria but we still like to grow our veggies in it! We find washing our hands a real miracle worker to ensuring we stay healthy.

    [Reply]

    SM Reply:

    Dear Betty, seems like you are looking at a site describing the making of Manure Tea for no reason.

    I suggest that you look for other forms of Fertilizer, such as Chemical Grows. They are fully synthetic and many of the Oil based, which means you will be getting something completely Un-organic, which sounds like it would be perfect for you

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    @ SM – Well said! 😉

    [Reply]

  5. FarmerMike says:

    It is amazing to me how few people out there actually understand the benefit of live, biologically active soil. That includes a myriad of microbes needed to feed the soil and plants. If earthworms like it, it is a good idea. If it harms earthworms, like chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides, then it is a bad idea. The harm from these things, which do not come off from washing your hands and your vegetables, FAR outweighs any risks from raising food naturally. Using manure tea, and washing your vegetables before you use them are great practices that sadly many people don’t follow. Keep up the good work!

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    FarmerMike – thankyou!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    [Reply]

    ertgfds Reply:

    washing vegies doesnt get rid of e-coli

    [Reply]

    drose Reply:

    I am amazed at some of the comments on here regarding manure tea and organic soil amendments like compost…the chemical companies have certainly done a good job…kind of sad.

    [Reply]

  6. Wow.
    Mrs. Dirty Boots, Farmer Mike, I am with you both. Some people are grocery-store hippies who haven’t yet realized that their plastic wrapped produce is grown in DIRT (#&%$&EEEWWWW!!!!!!). Don’t let them get you down, and keep up the good work.

    Sara.

    p.s. My father-in-law worked to build a public sewage treatment plant (you know, the place where it goes if you don’t compost your own and you flush the toilet!) where the dried sludge was sold and literally fought over by all of the commercial farmers in the county that grew food for everyone to eat! The sludge was very well treated and tested, but it all comes from the same place. Go figure!

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Sara, thanks very much for the support and glad you’re proof of the sludge debate – a lot of folks are in denial about where their s**t goes and what it helps them eat!

    [Reply]

  7. Healthy Vegetarian says:

    The manure tea nay-sayers are “trolling” to make trouble here. They are purposely causing F.U.D. (Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt). They are not your friends!

    Manure tea, when appliedproperly, (and even manure without the soaking) has always been safe to use. Nobody should assume that raw human sewage is the same as livestock manure tea. E-coli bacteria are mainly present in human waste, but not in Llama Poo for example. Flying insects could touch your fruit and pollute it, but they already do. Don’t we always wash our food before eating it? Of course we do!

    Composted manure of any kind will be safe and almost certainly beneficial. Why is composted manure safe? Because the bacteria have been “cooked” out of it by the heat of decomposition.

    Personally, we get fantastic organic liquid fertilizer results in our organically grown garden vegetables with mix-it-yourself Llama Nuggets(TM) from a little boy who sells Llama manure for manure tea at http://LlamaPoo.Com (He always washes his hands after collecting Llama poop, even with a shovel!)

    [Reply]

    ertgfds Reply:

    Not true, e-coli is also present in cow manure. there is a problem with high e-coli counts in northland streams here in NewZealand caused by cows crapping in them and farm run off.

    [Reply]

  8. aischa says:

    GREAT ADVICE
    I found some horse manure which I converted into tea and then applied to my veggies, unfortunately I am not sure whether this was such a great idea in regards to e-coli and other bacterias. How long should I wait to eat the veggies?

    [Reply]

  9. aischa says:

    this is for # Betty Naubgobler” remarks:

    have you ever eaten corn?
    what do you think has been applied before the corn has been planted? Poop that has been collected from the previous year.

    Maybe you should go out in the country in fall and see for your self.

    [Reply]

  10. Richard Lowery says:

    Was wondering what an average N-P_K rating would be for
    “cow pattie tea” ???

    [Reply]

  11. Tamara says:

    My hubby’s and my families had garden growing up… We were “workers” and both of us remember using manure in the gardens… Of course, we lived dangerously back then–we licked the spoon when someone made a cake… YES! That’s right RAW eggs… (Played with mercury too–but then that’s another story.) Anyway, hubby’s mom made manure tea; my grandpa had us put cow manure from the neighbors into the bottom of the hole when we were planting tomatoes…. YES WE DID LIVE DANGEROUSLY!

    I’m thinking maybe I shouldn’t have a garden –or my neighbors either… Here’s the problem: I have horses; they have cattle–what if a bug lands on a manure pile and then on one of our veggies… *trembling in fear*

    [Reply]

    Mr.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Tamara, he he.

    Nice one. People are way to “trembly” about anything they believe dirty. Kids never used to be so prone to health problems when sides were just washed in soap rather than bleached to hell. And as to the worries about manure etc, we find washing our hands to be very beneficial. Lovely comment from you, please visit again.

    [Reply]

  12. Foggle says:

    This is too hilarious. Are these people for real? What if a fly lands on a dog poop then LANDS ON THEM! I’m surprised they’re still alive!

    A couple of years ago, in my ignorance, I simply dug seaweed and cow pats right into my garden at the start of witner. Let them winter over then planted in spring with a good spread of pea straw over the top. Grew the most stunning veges … pest and disease free.

    Who knew I was dicing with death! Adrenaline junkie!

    Keep up the good work!

    [Reply]

  13. yvonne manecke says:

    Poor city slickers. It isn’t their fault that they don’t know about manure! But I sure had a good laugh reading all this. The biggest tomatoes I have ever seen were grown on top of a cesspool. Of course I wouldn’t touch em with a 10 ft. pole. But a friend of mine who travels alot said they use sewer waste in China and other countries to raise veggies and crawfish.

    [Reply]

  14. yvonne manecke says:

    I really think cow manure makes the veggies sweeter. Like tomatoes!!! Yummy tomato sandwiches!!

    [Reply]

  15. yvonne manecke says:

    Oh, I have a friend (He is a banker!) He puts old manure in a burlap sack, sets it in a bucket and makes the tea so the seeds don’t get in the garden.

    [Reply]

  16. Mims says:

    I always think it’s strange how people are so disgusted by any natural waste, bacteria and germs. I find chemicals and GMOs so much more frightening. Yay for manure tea!!!

    [Reply]

  17. eric says:

    hi folks, i am based in Chennai, India. I deal with Manure tea. Please let me know if any of you are interested in sourcing from me. I can supply you with good quantities and a very reasonable price.

    My contact id is eric271071@yahoo.com

    regards
    Eric

    [Reply]

    Mr.Dirty Boots Reply:

    ooh yummy, can’t wait to get me some manure tea. Can you please tell me what type of manure is used? Can I add milk to it too?

    [Reply]

  18. Travvy says:

    all i’m gonna say as a qualified production horticulturalist is keep up the shit bagging. making manure tea is well known as the “best practice” by commercial fruit and vegetable growers around the world. chemical fertilizers just cant compete with a good “home made” fertilzer if the person making it knows what they are doing.

    [Reply]

  19. hussay says:

    help please.

    I made tea from chicken manure,
    but when i tested it using RAPITEST 4-Ways Analyzer, it does not show Nitrogen,
    then i tested it chemically, found that it has P, and K alright but very very little Nitrogen!!!

    what could be the reason?

    does it get evaporated some how….?
    or
    is there some thing wrong with the c.manure itself?

    Any idea.

    I had to fortify it with chemical made Nitrogen!

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Sorry Hussay, perhaps someone else will leave an insightful comment but I’m afraid I don’t approach things with quite your level of technical examination. I would have though chicken manure would be extremely high in nitrogen – my tomatoes always seem to think so!

    [Reply]

  20. hussay says:

    thanks Mrs.Dirty Boots,

    May be the reason is that I tested it too soon.
    Just came from the farm, tested it using the electroic RAPITEST 4-Ways Analyzer,
    and it seems to have N, as well as the sheep manure.
    It seems that It need about 3 to 4 days.

    Mrs.Dirty Boots,
    how often do you use it for your tomato.

    the best thing about the natural manure tea, is that you do not have to worry about burning the plant. and it is quick acting!

    and one more question, since you have the experience :),

    how long can you keep the manure tea before use, I geared if you leave it for long time, you may loose most of the Nitrogen from it.

    [Reply]

  21. H Hussay,

    I use manure tea once a week on tomatoes, peppers etc until they set fruit. I start using the manure tea two to three weeks after it is first made. Then I simply keep on using and topping up the bucket till the end of the summer.

    Give to brassicas that are looking a bit straggly or being hit hard by pests or disease to perk them up a little!

    [Reply]

    hussay Reply:

    thank you for your reply.

    I do not know what is the big fuss about fresh chicken manure,
    or let me say, not aged manure, it is just dry(could be a month old , little more of less),
    I tried it for brewing the tea. it shows to be strong, i diluted it, then but the actual manure on the compost pile.
    i do not see why should i wait for months to use it.
    yes i read the other day, that the dried manure have more nutrients than the fresh one, or not too old one.

    I read this :
    (The moisture content of fresh manure is around 70% to 85%. The moisture content of air-dried manure is around 9% to 15%. As manure dries, the nutrients not only concentrate on a weight basis, but also on a volume basis due to structural changes (settling) of the manure. Volatilization of urine nitrogen can result in considerable loss of nitrogen, up to 50% or more of the total nitrogen.
    ).

    and this interesting table:

    (
    Table 1. (Typical)
    Nitrogen Phosphorus Potassium Calcium Magnesium Organic
    matter Moisture
    content
    (N) (P2O5) (K2O) (Ca) (Mg)
    FRESH
    MANURE % % % % % % %
    Cattle 0.5 0.3 0.5 0.3 0.1 16.7 81.3
    Sheep 0.9 0.5 0.8 0.2 0.3 30.7 64.8
    Poultry 0.9 0.5 0.8 0.4 02 30.7 64.8
    Horse 0.5 0.3 0.6 0.3 0.12 7.0 68.8
    Swine 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.2 0.03 15.5 77.6
    TREATED
    DRIED MANURE % % % % % % %
    Cattle 2.0 1.5 2.2 2.9 0.7 69.9 7.9
    Sheep 1.9 1.4 2.9 3.3 0.8 53.9 11.4
    Poultry 4.5 2.7 1.4 2.9 0.6 58.6 9.2
    )

    source:

    http://ecochem.com/t_manure_fert.html

    but i found the tea, I made from not aged c.manure to be very rich, had to dilute it a lot.

    one more thing Mrs. Dirty Boots.

    I currently have my tomato showing some flowers 4tomato, while it is not big enough.
    should remove them, and give them more N to get greener, bigger first, before fruiting!?

    [Reply]

    Cap Schep Reply:

    So are you saying that once my plants set fruit I should stop feeding them the tea, right? I’m using 5 gallon buckets with a nice homemade potting soil mix and an AWS ( automatic watering system ) similar to an earthbox ( but a lot cheaper )…Not sure but I think this would really work great by adding it to the reservoir…Had 16 buckets last year and I’m expanding to as much as 60, 5 gallon buckets next spring!! They’re up on tables…No stooping, no weeding. no watering. Life’s good!!! But can always be better…Any feed back would be awesome….

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Cap, It’s what I read from the master John Seymore so I have always fed until the fruit sets. Sounds like you have a pretty easy system sorted – enjoy your tomatoes!

    [Reply]

  22. hussay says:

    Mrs.Dirty Boots, whoever knows the answer please

    Hello.

    what could be the cause of the chicken manure tea changing to dark color, very dark, like dark blue kind of

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Hussay – Probably just the fermentation – mine goes an interesting greeny black.

    [Reply]

  23. Cap Schep says:

    I Love Mrs. Dirty boots and these threads!!!!

    [Reply]

  24. hussay says:

    Mrs.Dirty Boots,

    I have this Q, not sure f it is the right place to ask it, but I will try :).

    I’m having a problem getting cucumber grow like tomato does, both in same place same every thing(light, water,…),
    cucumber leaves are pale weak, not growing well,….
    why? what is special about cucumber care…

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Hi,

    Think you need to look this up – could be mildew, could be too much nitrogen or not enough nitrogen and countless other things like temperature dropping after planting.

    Sorry not to be more help

    [Reply]

  25. hussay says:

    Mrs.Dirty Boots,

    I noticed that when I do chicken manure from my farm, it shows hi Nitrogen using (Rapitest) indicator tool.
    But, when I measure it after few days, I notice that it get a lot lower Nitroget indication..

    Is that normal?,
    and
    Does it mean that manure tea should be used right after being brewed to avoid loosing of nutrients(namely Nitrogen). Since P, and K will stay there based on a test I did before.

    [Reply]

  26. HiloHattie says:

    We have such wet weather here in Hilo, Hawaii that I’m afraid my chicken manure is already leached of much of its nutrients by the time I gather and brew it.
    Since I’m using it as one of a number of admendments, I don’t think its a great problem.
    Nevertheless, I’d like to know about the chicken manure decomposition factor. How long is it viable when left in open air and weather conditions?

    Mahalo nui,
    Hattie

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    HiloHattie – Hi sorry but you’ve asked the wrong gal! I don’t worry too much about such specifics, since even well rotted manure is full of nutrients and good for plants as we know. No doubt yours will have fewer, but still a good amount.

    [Reply]

    chicken Reply:

    Lots of leaching, ie high amounts of rain, and warm temperatures can lead to loss of the plant available nitrogen in litter (aka the good stuff) however old litter still has some nitrogen locked up in its organic matter that will EVENTUALLY be released. I would say just add the old litter to your garden and skip making to tea to make use of all the good organic material and you should still get a little K and P and a slow release of N that will help for years to come. But old manures really lack much nutrients you are really just improving soil structure.

    [Reply]

  27. littlejonny says:

    Gday all (great site by the way)although I am no expert I would like to share how I prepare the manure for my garden any comments or ideas for improvements on this process would be welcomed….I use horse poo simply because this is the most available to me.After collecting I reuse any plastic bags and milk bottles that I have stored(handy things milk bottles)I then bag or bottle the dry manure and leave in the sun for one day(I have found this really gets the process started).I then take the top layer off my compost heap and put the bags and bottles on the heap, with a knife i put a small hole in each bag and bottle then put the top layer back on the compost pile. I then leave them for about three months to perculate(depending on weather)the end result is a very strong mix, only a very small amount(table spoon full,rough measure only,I don’t use a table spoon from my kitchen…..germaphobes breath easy)into about ten litres of water.It is amazing just how quick plants react once applied.All the left over manure brew I then put into a sixty litre plasic drum to be used at a later date.

    [Reply]

  28. Cow Dung is Clean! :) says:

    Unlike the stool of other animals Cow Dung is clean. Cows speand their days eating grass and the like and have 4 stomachs to digest all of that green. It has been scientifically proven to have antiseptic properties so the people who are saying that it is dangerous are in ignorance. All of the Cow’s by-products are wholesome! The dung can be used as a cleaner alternative to cooking with gas and has been used as such for thousands of years, the milk from the cow can be churned into butter from which clarified butter known as Ghee can be produced which is used in cooking aswell as an alternative for oil lamps, and we all know the delicious things that come from milk! Back to the Cow Dung topic, Cow Dung is wonderful for plants and as you all are aware of you just have to rest it for a period and dilute it well as to not burn the plants, that’s all and your plants will thank you! 🙂 This is a great thread Mrs. Dirty Boots! 🙂

    [Reply]

  29. I love this thread too! Manure tea is definitely a “hot” topic! 😉

    [Reply]

  30. bobby says:

    HI ALL,always thought any time manure was put on garden,or dug in,then rains come, do u not get MANURE TEA? I USE IT LOTS BUT I DO STIR IT QUIET OFTEN,and mix with more water, manure tea my 3rd love, WIFE THEN DOG LOL LOL HAPPY NEW YEAR,

    [Reply]

  31. Steve says:

    So the national organic standards for safe use of manure say 90-day-old manure or 120 for lettuce, spinach and such. This should bridge the gap between the worriers and the non-worriers. I have some tea from last fall that I never got around to using. Anyone know if that meets the 120 day standard since it’s been wet the entire time?

    [Reply]

  32. rrck says:

    Is the use of chicken manure tea as foliar spray for cabbage not advisable?

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Er no!

    Well unless your cabbages are purely ornamental!

    [Reply]

  33. Teena says:

    Thanks for the info …..I have a cattle farm and I also produce hay. I am always looking for more natural ideas to use. The price of commercial fert. cost $475 per ton for N, $750 for P and $700 for K. I use lots of fert for growing Hybrid Bermuda grass. It is my understanding that commercial fert doesn’t contain the other nutrients that are necessary for good forage production, so I am brewing cow manure tea and I plan to spray it on my fields to try and get the natural microbes going again. Has anyone tried this before and how did it work?

    [Reply]

  34. Jesse Invik says:

    I’m sorry, but it simply isn’t true that cow dung is clean. Cows are a significant reservoir for E. coli and other pathogens. It is true that proper composting will kill most pathogens, but it has to be done right. Not turning the compost means that the surface manure will still contain significant amounts of the E. coli pathogens. Manure tea that is made from un-composted manure is a really bad idea. Some folks on here seem to think that cow manure is wonderful stuff because cows just eat grass! I repeat, cows are a significant reservoir for E. coli. Look it up in the scientific literature (see references below). Outbreaks of Escherichia coli O157:H7 have killed people.

    Berry, E., Wells, J. Arthur, T., Woodbury, B., Nienaber, J., Brown-Brandl, T., and Eigenberg, T. 2010. Soil versus pond ash surfacing of feedlot pens: Occurrence of Escherichia coli O157:H7 in cattle and persistence in manure. Journal of Food Protection. 73: 1269-1277.

    Larney, F., Yanke, L., Miller, J., McAllister, T., Hodge, L.,and Arroyo L. G. 2003. Fate of coliform bacteria in composted beef cattle feedlot manure. Journal of Environmental Quality. 32: 1508-1515.

    Meals, D, and Braun, C. 2006. Demonstration of methods to reduce E.coli runoff from dairy manure application sites. Journal of Environmental Quality. 35: 1088-1100.

    [Reply]

  35. BigMama says:

    Ms. Dirty Boots & those that live dangerously, et al.,

    I have lots of garden space and eight hens. Not only do we eat the eggs graciously provided by our hens without running them through an anti-bacterial wash (tee hee), I use a lovely batch of manure tea on all my veggies. Not only do I use the manure, but I add worm castings with the brew as well. I prefer to use a five gallon bucket with a 1/3 of manure and two cups of castings combination, brewing for several weeks with the aid of one of those thinga majiggers you use in a fish tank (aerator). Oh my, is this stuff wonderful–the plants love it! For any naysayer not familiar with what it is to really get back to the basics and work with mother nature has provided, keep on buying the bulk produce that must spring full grown from the farmers imagination. I haven’t attempted the large bin and burlap sack method but intend to. Thanks for the cool info and best of luck this season if you are in the Northen hemisphere like myself.

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Hey BigMama – always good to hear from others enjoying the muddy good life!

    [Reply]

  36. AMbewe says:

    mai Dirty boots
    I have followed this Manure tea debate Here in malawi southern Africa.sounds Good.However would you please xplain why we should stop using the liquid when fruition starts

    [Reply]

  37. jeremy says:

    i have heard that you can put epsom salt in your manure tea as well? has anyone tried this?

    [Reply]

  38. cotton says:

    How long can you use chicken manure tea?mine has been curing for a year

    [Reply]

  39. marry says:

    hi
    I have question and I hope someone knows the answer, can I use the manure tea for hydroponic veggies? does it burn the veggies which ar not in soil?

    [Reply]

    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Sorry Marry I haven’t looked into hydroponic veggies at all. Though the fact you give them nutrient rich liquid (I think!) anyway makes me wonder if it would be necessary.

    [Reply]

  40. ncboman says:

    Why so many know nothing blowing flys hovering around this topic? 😀

    I’ve been using manure in the garden for 30yrs with great success. I raise rabbits just for the manure and fishing worms it provides but I use fresh cow manure as well, all made into tea.

    As with most things a little common sense goes a good ways.

    [Reply]

  41. MMEK says:

    Have really enjoyed reading all these comments. I can’t believe some of the negative comments posted. How do these people think gardens have been fertilized before chemicals were made. Good ol’ CRAP!!! My hubby and I have a farm and are currently setting up self sustainable living on it (has been vacant of a homestead for years), this is our new way of life and we will be using sheep manure to make manure tea, as we farm crops and sheep we have an endless supply….am very excited to be using all natural and chemical free products…thanks for the information 🙂

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  42. steveod says:

    New to chicken husbandry n medium level gardener but as I used to use chicken manure over cow due to the higher n I began to use the fresh manute on my beans n tomatoes ..as other than fresh free range eggs was a big motivation to raising the chickens..I guess what must of spared my plants even though I grew them in the high heat of sw florida for green manure n nitrogen fixing my beds is the fact that I’m extremely anal..appropriate pun I might add for this post lol..about mulching..I have an abundance if oak n pine needle leaves n as soon as my seeds break n establishe themselves I layer w 3″ of mulch..haven’t burned anything yet n the leaves r so dark n forest green! N the..green manure crop..ended up yielding 3 weeks of green beans..out of season! I was so encouraged by this I started 3 more sheet beds n a couple raised furrows n have more beans acoming..as for the germaphobes..isn’t it intetesting that those that cleanse themselves so frequently n anally r the ones who seem to get sick n worry about it..I have dirt continuously under my fingetnails..concrete madonary n building is my orofession n gardening is my hobby n life relaxer n germs seem to just bounce off of me like I was superman or something! ! N not one word of warning from novice or lifelong gardeners that someone in the family took ill??!!! I can betcha a lot of folks eating nothing but prossesed food n fast food may have a caution of the ill effects from diabetes!! Long live fiber..love the site mrs dirty boots

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  43. southwind says:

    Just found this site. Very interesting. I would be careful about using any type of manure directly on the food plants. Too many outbreaks of ecoli. But too many people afraid of a few germs. My youngest daughter grew up outside with all types of animals and was never sick but the other two did not go out if they could help it and did not do much with animals and were always sick. Germs are very necessary for a healthy life.
    Keep up the good work. I want to try the tea recipes. i have a lot of chicken manure and did not know how long to let it cure before using. I will give it a try this fall.

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  44. southwind says:

    Has anyone used soybeans to make tea? We fed soybean feed to our cows last year and have some left. Do not know how many chemicals were used on it so perhaps not a good idea.

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  45. Mahlori says:

    Morning i was quietly following the nice advice about natural fertilizer the we can use instead of using chemical one we are using almost everytime its queit helpful more especially to back yard gardens but i really wanna understand how many times can we use this per week on vegetables and how can we do to use it example like foliar spray or fertigation just help

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  46. Mahlori says:

    Please if you want to write negative things about what other people have said you are not helping but confussing us try to say something which you have done a research on it and share like others thank you

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  47. len says:

    interesting conversation happening..i use dandelions as a source for my fertilizer tea..i pull them roots and all and fill a 45 gal plastic barrel with them..cover with water..stir every few days until they desolve and add an icecream pail to 5 gal pail of water.. also add fish carcass when i,m lucky enough to have them..doesn’t smell much different than manure tea and results are the same except i have an unlimited supply of dandelions.. also use epsom salts as a transplanting medium..two cups to a 5 gal pail and add 2 or 2 cups to each tomato plant or peppers ..i’ve always used some crumpled news paper in the bottom of the holes to soak up the mixture..i water with my dandelion tea on a more or less weekly basis. Been gardening for 50 years and it works for me..also..shame on me. i regularly eat my veggies direct from the garden while i’m working..i suppose one of these days that will kill me, won’t it..len

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  48. jay-r says:

    hi,
    can anyone help me to figure out how long the manure tea can be used.
    i mean the life of manure tea.

    and how can i prepare manure tea… i wil use chicken manure.

    im jay. from philipines.
    bse-bio
    this is for my researh

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  49. crimson h says:

    im wanting to use manure tea for the 1st time but we wont be planting until the end of april. I will be using both rabbit and cow manure since that is the animals I have. I was wondering if I could go ahead and start making the tea and bottling it up for future use

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  50. Claire says:

    I made the tea and because my chicken poop had been sitting for about a year, I used it after only brewing for 1 week. My veggies loved it! Now, at 2.5 weeks, I have a disgusting smelling slidgy mess! I know this can still be good for my plants (even if not kind to my nose). I noticed today that there are worm/larvae/parasite looking creatures swimming in it… (Gross). Did I do something wrong? Is this dangerous to use as fertilizer? Does this mean my chickens have parasites? What do it do now? I’m very new at farming can’t you tell? Haha!

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  51. Sandal says:

    My manure tea is growing green stuff on top of it. Is it OK to use this on my plants? This is my second batch from manure I purchased at the store. The first batch did not have this growth. Thank you.

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  52. Maruku says:

    Hi. In Kenya, we heap all the manure in a compost and add dried weeds and grass. add a little water regularly and in about 3 months, the stuff breaks down to soil-like but its not wet or flowy. then we make holes in shamba, 1by 0.5 feet then I foot deep. fill it 3/4 way withe stuff, the rest with soil. This hole grows maize (6 seeds) beans (8) kales (3) etc for 3 years. no fertilizer. Most work with bare hands. Some even spray rabbit urine on kales and other vegies. very effective agaist aphids and other pests. I guess someone is about to puke! Heheheeee!

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  53. Maruku says:

    oh… and something else. I love your site Mrs DB! And if I may add, we learned this from parents and grandparents who never heard of ecoli, bleach, handwash, sanitizer etc. My grandpa died at 96 and gradma almost 100… and not from ecoli… and she used to say, “a little bacteria is good for your stomach.” Diseases like BP, diabetes, cancers, obesity were little known here before polished and bleached flour,processed foods, pesticides etc came along. Im learning again to live like my grandma, coz i want to live as long as she did. So I grow most of my food organically, keep my own chicken,rabbits and ducks, eat only whole flour and drink well/ rain water… and enjoy the sites of my wonderful manured plants and the chicken/ ducks walking around… food for the soul!

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  54. Keith says:

    As previously suggested, I too am considering using chicken manure tea to fertilize my bermuda grass hayfields. I was told to spray 12-15 gallons per acre. Has anyone else tried this, and does the amount per acre seem right? Is using it on a 40 acre hayfield even feasible? If you have used it, what kind of results did you get. Thanks. Keith

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  55. Don Leister says:

    Thanks for sharing folks. I’m not sure what year this thread began began but I just found it now, 3/’17 , and glad I did.
    My neighbors have recently been raising chickens and I wanted to make some tea for my garden.
    I had been using organic Garden-tone fertilizer before and have not been seeing great results. Actually miracle -gro had better results but I would prefer more natural. I can’t wait to see how my tea will work! I used to use it many years ago and wanted to see what folks are doing these days and it is basically the same thing.

    On another note, I am a luthier, violin making and repair, I picked up a wood stain recipe recently that is made of only horse manure and urine. The fresh manure is barely wetted with urine in a covered bucket and allowed to drip into another bucket below. The result is an exceptional wood stain, partially an oxidation stain and part color stain. When finished it has no odor.
    You wouldn’t think a good complex brown color would be difficult to do but I have tried many things, and have heard many other attempts from other desperate violinmakers like myself and this is really fine.

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  56. Kathleen says:

    Dear Mrs. D. B,
    I’m not sure what “rotted” manure is. I think for something to rot, it needs moisture. In a very dry climate, such as where I live, manure will turn dry and grey in a few weeks before it rots. Is it OK to use this dried manure to make tea? Thanks.

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    Mrs.Dirty Boots Reply:

    Hi Kathleen.

    We used dry manure in Spain with no problems. Good luck!

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