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Nettle fertiliser???
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Blue Sky



Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Posts: 7618
Location: France
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 05 10:05 pm    Post subject: Nettle fertiliser???  Reply with quote    

Nettle fertiliser???

I once heard (somewhere) that it is possible to make a very nice - nitrogen enriched fertiliser from nettles similar to that which you would make from comfrey. I am damned if I can find the book which I read it in (it may even have been a topic on here but I think I read it long before this site was live) so I am wondering if anyone here can shed some light on how good this fertiliser actually is?

From what I remember, you cut the nettles (young) then throw them into a big water butt covering them with water and after some time you draw the water off to feed to your tomato plants. It is the timings and details that I am missing ..... please, can anybody help?

Haddock



Joined: 24 Apr 2005
Posts: 81
Location: Marburg, Germany
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 05 12:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I was told the same from a friend of mine who said that you could make liquid fertiliser from Nettles, unfortunately he didn't mention anything about amounts/timings either. Sorry thats not much help really.

Gertie



Joined: 08 Jan 2005
Posts: 1638
Location: Yorkshire
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 05 6:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

You can make your own fertilizer from nettles (or comfrey) by collecting freshly picked plants press them into a large bowl or bucket. Start with as large a quantity of nettles as you can, as they will decrease in volume once they start to rot down. Add water, roughly allowing 10 litres of water to 1kg of plant. Mix thoroughly, make sure the plants are covered with water. Cover with clingfilm or a lid. Stir several times with a wooden spoon over a period of several weeks, always replace the lid or clingfilm.

After a few weeks when the mixture is rotted down, strain into a bucket. Before using the fertilizer dilute it with water (about 10 times). The solid matter left behind from this can be incorporated into your compost heap, anyway.

judith



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 22789
Location: Montgomeryshire
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 05 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Gertie wrote:
After a few weeks when the mixture is rotted down, strain into a bucket. Before using the fertilizer dilute it with water (about 10 times). The solid matter left behind from this can be incorporated into your compost heap, anyway.


Put a peg on your nose as you do so - it stinks summat awful!

whitelegg1



Joined: 05 Apr 2005
Posts: 409
Location: Woodford Green
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 05 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Stuuf the nettles in a drainpipe and weigh down with a lemonade bottle.

See link attached

http://www.keirg.freeserve.co.uk/diary/tech/manure.htm

Gertie



Joined: 08 Jan 2005
Posts: 1638
Location: Yorkshire
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 05 3:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Nice link, whitelegg1!!

Blue Sky



Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Posts: 7618
Location: France
PostPosted: Thu May 05, 05 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Thanks Gertie. I have got a big bin going as of yesterday. I was sobbing at the fact that I may have to put mains water into the bin and then, as if answered from above .... the heavens opened and filled all my water buts (and I have quite a few) including the nettle bin so all is well to start us off.

Next question .... Is the finished product as good for my tomato plants as I am told it is?

Lozera
Guest





PostPosted: Thu May 26, 05 7:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I've seen this liquid feed made from couch grass in old black bin liners, tied very tight and left in a hot sunny place - but you DON'T want to smell the results!!

Blue Sky



Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Posts: 7618
Location: France
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 05 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Definately right about the stink!

Mine has been brewing for three weeks now and I dread taking off the lid to stir. 2-4 weeks, the article said so I am about ready to give it a go on some of my tomatos. Will post the results soon.

Suz



Joined: 19 Oct 2005
Posts: 23

PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 05 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I've been making something similar for a couple of years now. I use nettles or comfrey, horse or chicken manure and some wood ash. Mixed up in a big bucket with water and left to steep.

The smell is absolutely awful, makes me gag when using it, and it's strong stuff so you do need to dilute it. But it's great for tomatoes, soft fruit, flowering plants, veggies - anything that grows really. I can highly recommend it.

Blue Sky



Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Posts: 7618
Location: France
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 05 10:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Well I got a bin full and used it on my toms throughout the summer. Just nettles and water, didn't put in chick manure in. Maybe I will try that next year. It sure did stink. I used it on half my tomato crop and left the other half without and saw no noticeable difference. We had good tomatoes from both beds. Maybe the soil didn't need the additional fertilizer? However I will do it again next year just for the sake of it because it is free

Have yet to try comfrey as I cannot get hold of the ruddy stuff here.

Millymollymandy



Joined: 23 Sep 2005
Posts: 187
Location: Brittany, France
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 05 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Tomatoes need potash for fruiting so if the nettle fertiliser is high in nitrogen you will just be encouraging leafy growth. I looked up nettle fertiliser a while ago and there are many recipes on French websites. If you have a lot of nettles growing on your land it would indicate that you have a nitrogen rich soil anyway.

Blue Sky



Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Posts: 7618
Location: France
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 05 6:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Millymollymandy wrote:
Tomatoes need potash for fruiting so if the nettle fertiliser is high in nitrogen you will just be encouraging leafy growth. I looked up nettle fertiliser a while ago and there are many recipes on French websites. If you have a lot of nettles growing on your land it would indicate that you have a nitrogen rich soil anyway.


Thanks for that input MMM.

That explains the situation somewhat. We have absolutely loads of nettles here and thinking about it now, we had absolutely loads of leaf growth on the toms. I found myself nipping out the shoots on a daily basis and we had over a hundred plants so it was a big task. Your post makes good sense. I will certainly bear this in mind next season. Thanks again.

S

Treacodactyl
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 25697
Location: Jumping on the bandwagon of opportunism
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 05 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

For potash you can use wood ash. I ensure the fire is cleaned out of any coal ash and then burn wood & animal bones on it. The ash is collected and spead in the greenhouse before planting and I keep some to apply later in the year. We had no shortage of flowers this year.

One final thing, is it just me or does anyone else read this thread as 'Nettie fertiliser'? Sorry.

sean
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 41915
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 05 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Just you I think.

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