Healthy plants grow vigorously, bloom profusely and give a tasty harvest. Weak plants, on the other hand, are susceptible to disease and pests. Important nutrients can help here.
There are two options: Commercial plant enhancers, a kind of vitamin preparation. Or you can rely on cheap home remedies that you can make yourself, which also provide many good ingredients. This is commonly called herbal medicine.
“Traditionally, herb leaves, vegetables and flowering shrubs are used to prepare fertilizers, broths, teas, cold water extracts and extracts,” says author Natalie Faßmann, listing the different varieties. The recipes are based on old garden knowledge and they primarily help the plants preventively. Injuries or pest infestations can only be reduced to an acceptable level with these self-made aids.
The natural liquid fertilizer: liquid fertilizer
Plant fertilizers contain many nutrients, especially nitrogen and potassium. But it can also be used to deter pests.
In the usual recipes, mix a kilo of fresh or 100 to 200 grams of dried and coarsely chopped parts of the plant with ten liters of water. The German Nature Conservation Union (Nabu) recommends rainwater. The batch is stirred regularly to allow oxygen to enter the mixture. You can clearly feel an unpleasant odor. “Just touch one or two hands of rock dust in the liquid fertilizer,” advises Nabu consultant Verena Jedamczik.
The liquid manure is left in a warm place for about 14 days; the fermentation takes longer in a cooler place. The fertilizer is ready when no more bubbles are formed.
Comfrey provides potassium, shelf drives pests away
Many liquid fertilizers can be compared to fast-acting liquid fertilizers, says Natalie Faßmann. The nitrogen contained is immediately absorbed by the plants. Nettle and Comfrey are the two most common plants used to make plant aids. In addition to the mentioned nitrogen, stinging nettle also supplies silicic acid and iron, while the firewood also contains potassium and tannins.
Fertilizer must be diluted, either in a ratio of 1:10 to distribution with a watering can, according to Nabu. Or in the ratio 1:50 for spraying on the leaves.
Onion tea protects against fungal infections
A tea also improves the plant’s resilience or repels pests. For him, the herbs are poured over with boiling water in the same ratio as for the liquid fertilizer and then have to soak for 15 to 20 minutes. Natalie Faßmann advises closing the pan with a lid so that the volatile, essential oils drip back from the lid and down into the container and do not evaporate and get lost. Tea is used undiluted.
A classic is the light tea with a slightly modified recipe. The neighbor advises to pour ten liters of boiling water over 75 grams of onions and leaves and let it all soak for ten minutes. Sprayed undiluted on the plants every two weeks, this tea is said to be effective against fungal infections.
Rhubarb broth against leek moths
For a broth, first soak the plant parts in cold water for 24 hours. The mixture is then boiled for 15 to 30 minutes. It is then given in a ratio of 1:10 as a preventive measure or sprayed in a ratio of 1:20 for foliar fertilization.
A popular home remedy is the broth made from rhubarb leaves, for example 500 grams of leaves and three liters of water. It is used undiluted against leek moths and black bean lice.
When extracting with cold water, no heating is used. The plants only bleed in cold water for one to three days. These are then sieved and the extract is used pure or diluted with water in a ratio of 1: 1.
A tip that is often given is the cold water extract of chamomile flowers, which the seeds are coated with before sowing to prevent the seedlings from being attacked by fungi.
Natalie Faßmann: Comfrey Fertilizer, Garlic & Co. – Plant extracts for fertilizer and strengthening, Pala Verlag, ISBN: 978-3-89566-312-3