“Teas” for plants are not new. Simple Compost Tea has been used by serious gardeners for centuries. It involves putting some finished compost into some kind of porous bag and placing the bag into a pail of water. Let the pail sit for two or three days and the water will have turned the color of strong tea – thus Compost Tea. The resulting liquid contains micro-nutrients and a fair number of beneficial soil microbes; bacteria, fungi, and the like. When this brew is spayed on plants or poured into the soil, it helps the plants better deal with stress such as drought, disease, insects, etc.
Simple Worm Castings Teas uses worm castings instead of compost to make the simple tea. You can use the worm castings from your own worm farm or you can buy worm castings at the garden center.
Along Comes “Air Activated Tea!!
In the past five years, research at the University of Oregon and other institutions has revealed that when you set up that pail with the bag of compost or worm castings and you add large volumes of air into the liquid, the value of the tea for plants is increased to astounding levels. See Aerated Tea Machines in Yardener's Tool Shed.
When this Aerated Tea is sprayed on plants or used as a drench to the soil around plants every two or three weeks during the growing season, many good things happen:
Plants grow bigger, their color is brighter, and the flowers or the fruits are bigger.
Plants suffer from little or no disease during the entire growing season.
Incidence of pest insect problems goes down significantly; often to zero
Plants can handle drought much more effectively
The soil around the roots of the plants experiences an increase in the population and effectiveness of beneficial soil microbes.
You do not give the plants Aerated Tea as a replacement for fertilizer, however, plants getting a regular dose of Aerated Tea tend to need less fertilizer during the growing season.
How Does Aerated Tea Work?
The non-technical answer is when the compost or worm castings tea is exposed to large amounts of oxygen from the aerating process, there is an enormous increase in the population of beneficial bacteria, fungi, and other plant and soil microbes in that tea solution. If the tea is applied to the plants within 24 hours of being aerated, those beneficial microbes are transferred to the plant and to the soil around the plant. All the good things happen because of the presence of such an increased number of beneficial microbes.