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Kumquat's deluxe potting soil and manure tea

Contributed by the BC Growers Association.

Kumquat's deluxe potting soil

9 gallons peat moss
3 gallons vermiculite
6 gallons perlite
1 pound blood meal
1 pound bone meal
1 pound green sand
1 pound lime or dolomite lime
1 pound rock phosphate
Pinch of boron (borax is an inexpensive source)

Blend ingredients in a small cement mixer or large barrel with a tight fitting lid that will let you roll it around to mix the contents. If you have to stir the ingredients in an open container, moisten them SLIGHTLY with water to avoid breathing dust as you work. Do not use more than a pinch of boron. It encourages root growth, but its levels can quickly go from helpful to harmful in the soil. Once you get the soil all mixed you can add some manure tea (see recipe below). The lime in this mix helps to neutralize the acidity of the manure tea.


Manure Tea

10 to 15 gallons manure (combine horse, chicken, and cow manure to get a nice balance of nutrients. 5 gallon bucket of chickweed and/or stinging nettles. Water to fill 55 gallon drum. Dump manure(s) in the bottom of the drum. Add chickweed and/or nettles, both of which are rich in trace elements, then fill drum with water. Once a week stir the "tea" and add water to replace any that has evaporated. You'll need a brewing time of at least 3 weeks before using this tea in the potting soil mix.
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