I used to spend a lot of time making compost. Now, I use a much easier and—dare I say it!—more effective method: anaerobic compost tea!
Don’t Kill Yourself Making Compost!
Long ago, I used to spend a lot of time making big piles of greens and browns—carefully mixed, watered, turned, and sifted…. And yet I never had enough compost to go around.
I’m sure you know the feeling!
I still make piles, since I like to have fine compost for sprinkling on new garden beds and making my own potting mixes; however, I no longer rely on finished compost for the majority of my fertilizing.
Instead, I’ve got a much easier system: compost tea.
Read More: “How to Make Composting Easy”
Watch Me Make Anaerobic Compost Tea
This is my favorite way to make free fertilizer. I use moringa leaves, manure, urine, compost, weeds, and other nitrogen-rich materials. I put them in a big barrel, top it off with water, and then let it rot on down into liquid fertilizer for my gardens. I’ll also add a cup or two of Epsom salts if I have them available for the extra magnesium and sulfur.
After a couple of weeks of sitting in the sun and rotting, you’ve got a compost tea with some serious fertilizing power. Take a look:
How to Use Anaerobic Compost Tea
I’ve fed big plots of corn and other crops effectively with very little trouble and very little material after discovering how well this anaerobic composting method works. It’s similar to Bokashi composting, but without having to buy Bokashi starter. Just let nature take its course, and you’ll have a rich, green garden like I do.
Warning: You don’t want to pour this stuff on your greens or on other crops you’re going to eat right away, as it is most definitely not safe for consumption!
I cover this method in my popular book Compost Everything: The Good Guide to Extreme Composting, and I’ve had people write in and share their own successful experiments with the “big stinky barrel o’ fertility” method. Give it a try. Aside from the smell, I think you’ll like it.
A Quick Update
Here’s another video I made that offers specifics about my anaerobic compost tea recipe … even more stinky goodness from my “tea pot”! Won’t you be my neighbor?
This is an updated version of an article that was originally published on July 8, 2016. The author may not currently be available to respond to comments, however we encourage our Community members to chime in to share their experiences and answer questions!
David The Good is a Grow Network Change Maker, a gardening expert, and the author of five books you can find on Amazon: Compost Everything: The Good Guide to Extreme Composting, Grow or Die: The Good Guide to Survival Gardening, Totally Crazy Easy Florida Gardening, Create Your Own Florida Food Forest, and Push the Zone: The Good Guide to Growing Tropical Plants Beyond the Tropics. Find fresh gardening inspiration at his website TheSurvivalGardener.com and be sure to follow his popular YouTube channel.