What is Worm Tea?

There are several terms used when referring to Worm Tea.  Tea is a common name used to describe a liquid that is obtained from soaking specific organic material in water. That liquid can be a food grade beverage or a brew capturing and multiplying beneficial microbes.  Moreover, different organic materials produce different microbes and thus produce different teas. Since all teas are not the same, they cannot deliver the same results; this is critical in understanding the different methods in brewing teas.  Therefore, you must take care in reading any tea article and determine which tea or brewing method is being discussed.  To help in understanding the terms, “Worm tea”, is also called “Casting Tea”,  “Vermicast Tea” and/or “Vermiculture Tea”  and “earthworm castings” 

Before we can delve into the subject of Worm Tea, we must address the term “Compost Tea”. Compost Tea is simply tea made from  organic composting and is the bottom level of brewed teas. It is less diversified and effective when compared to “Worm Tea”.  That is not to say that “compost tea” is bad or ineffective – it does provide beneficial results and has its place in the garden.  However, worm tea is far superior from the stand point of providing the best overall result in a wider variety of beneficial areas of plant growth and soil improvements.  In fact, Worm Tea can be effectively used to enhance the speed and completeness of composting other organic material.  

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Why Use Worm Tea?

  • Because product descriptions and advertisements cannot be trusted.
    • Case in point – I saw a scientific comparison between worm castings/tea and a commercial brand plant fertilizer/seed starter/spray etc. Plant growth was compared and the commercial product made a leap ahead of the castings. But. two weeks later, the plant that was feed the commercial product began looking sick. The casting feed plant quickly over took the commercial product. The commercial product was advertised as the most economical way to grow healthy robust plants. The first two weeks of growth appeared true. But in order to keep that growth you had to buy step 2 or adult plant food and after that auda, lauda, lauda. They sucker you into buying their process. However, worm casting/tea work from seed starting to harvest.
  • Who would you trust? A product advertised to appeal to your wants or a product that you made and know what is in it.
  • Improves Soil Structure: Microbes in worm teas create pore spaces in the soil allowing more oxygen to penetrate into the soil enabling biological activities to develop. All this allows plant roots to root into the soil more easily and retain water for longer periods of time.
  • Suppresses Diseases: The purpose of making Casting Tea is to multiply micro-organisms that will over populate the available plant surface with “good” microbes so the “bad” microbes die off.
  • The microbes break the available nutrients down to be easily picked up by plants.

I’m a techie kinda guy. How does it work?

 

2 Types of Worm Casting Tea Bags