Plants are like people; they need food to grow…and nutritious food for best health. I would take that one step further and say that, not only should you feed the plant, you need to add organic amendments and nutrients to create healthy soil that your plants will thrive in.
My friend Annie Haven of Authentic Haven Brand Natural Brew created her product with this principle in mind. On her ranch in California (It’s been in her family since the 1800’s!), the cattle are free ranging and graze in native grass pastures, free of antibiotics, hormone-added grain, and pesticides. The manure that is produced is dehydrated, then packaged, and the tea bags are shipped out and ready for you to steep. What you make can either be used as a soil drench for roses and other plants or as a foliar spray.
At Oak Street Garden Shop we’ve carried Annie Haven’s Moo Poo Tea since last spring. The most popular has been the Soil Conditioner Premium Manure Tea, labeled for houseplants, container plants, the vegetable garden, shade plants, shrubs and lawns. Both are in sturdy, sewn-together “tea bags”, ready to brew. I’ve used it at the shop and in my own garden.
They couldn’t be any easier to use; just drop each bag in a 1 gallon, or up to a 5 gallon container, fill with tap water, cover and allow to steep for one to three days. Then use it to water any plants that need a good, rich organic boost.
One of my friends in Atlanta, Nancy Wallace, of Wallace Gardens, uses Annie Haven’s tea each year on her amaryllis bulbs and reports that her blooms are easily one third larger than they were on the same size bulbs before she started using this tea. She soaks them in it prior to planting, then waters them with it until they bloom. I’ve seen pictures of her amaryllis, and they are truly impressive.
Another way she uses it is as a “Super Brew”, placing 4-6 bags in a jug to make a very concentrated mixture. Then, using a hose end sprayer, she foliar sprays all of her plants with it. Summer foliar feeding like this also seems to deter bugs!
For a quick tea, if there’s none at hand, put a bag in a bucket and fill it up with water. Let it sit for 5 minutes, then begin squeezing the bag over and over; you’ll see the tea releasing into the water. Continue doing this 20-30 times and you’ve got yourself a fast made tea.
When you’re finished with the tea bags, cut them open with a pair of scissors and add the contents to your container gardens…it’s all useable!
Pricing for individual tea bags is $4.95 or you can purchase 3 for $12.95.