Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Comfrey Tea

...not for us but for our plants! According to my gardening books, it is a wonderful liquid feed for plants, particularly those in pots who's roots are restricted and cannot find nutrients on their own.

Comfrey's nitrogen content is particularly high, making it a good substitute for animal manures in compost systems. The leaves are also a good activator in stagnant compost bins due to their super speedy ability to rot down. Having comfrey in the garden growing alongside other plants also brings in other benefits such as their ability to draw up nutrients from below the root zone of most other plants.  I have also read that it aids the healing of bruising, if a few leaves are applied to the site of the wound as a poultice. It is also super hardy  - I thought I had killed my little plant but as soon as the weather warmed up it started shooting out from every which way! It was time to make some tea.......


I had picked up a barrel from my last tip visit a couple of weeks ago and thought it would be great to contain some of this liquid brew. It was just a simple matter of plucking off the leaves (which are quite prickly), and plunging them into a vessel of water and leaving them be for 4-5 weeks. This is my first time making comfrey tea and I am really curious about the rotting down process. Apparently the leaves break down quickly, producing a foul smelling black tea that is a nutritious food for plants when diluted down with water until the colour of straw. I have tried my hand at a similar type of liquid feed using seaweed (which worked great!), but it's the stench I'm interested in....one cannot smell from a book!


By the time it is ready for use, in about a months time, hopefully my tomatoes will be well on their way with needing some extra nudging...and coincedently, a lot of them are in pots this year, too! Will follow up with another post when and if a black soup appears.........

6 comments:

  1. Lovely, stinky stuff - enjoy! Can't wait to hear what you think of it ;)

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  2. I have lots of comfrey in the garden and have made the tea a few times. It really does smell! I have a very old batch of it I need to use up. you've reminded me to do it today.

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  3. Cool! Let us know how you go, Chris, and maybe we can grow some..thanks!

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  4. I'll be sure to keep you informed, Jo! :)

    Great, Anne - I have a batch of seaweed soup needing to be used up too! How funny :)

    It's truly difficult to destroy, Celia. If you can track someone down with a plant already growing, it could be worth trying some from root cuttings/divisions. (A good chook food too...in small doses).

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  5. Oh I need to make some of this very soon. Thanks for the inspiration.

    (Hi, btw. Can't remembered if I've actually commented here before... :)

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  6. Hi Kirsten! Thanks for stopping by. The tea is very easy to make and doesn't take long at all before it starts 'brewing'! :)

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Hi there, so nice of you to stop by! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I love hearing what you are up to. Christine x

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