Plant soaks act as natural tonics in the ornamental and vegetable garden and is very popular among amateur gardeners, as they are very easy to prepare yourself. One of the best-known is stinging nettle liquid manure: it is considered pest-repellent and provides the plants with nitrogen, potassium, and other important minerals such as silicic acid – the latter is said to improve the taste of vegetables such as tomatoes and cucumbers, among other things. The ingredients used are fresh shoots of the great nettle (Urtica dioica) and water, ideally rainwater low in minerals.
If you frequently prepare nettle liquid manure, you should think about planting the wild plant in the garden, for example in a hidden spot behind the compost – this will also increase the biodiversity in the garden because the great nettle is one of the most important insect food plants.
Step by step: How to prepare a nettle liquid manure
1. cut one kilogram of fresh nettles into small pieces
To make it, you first need about one kilogram of fresh nettles. If dried material is already available, about 200 grams of it will suffice. Cut the nettles into small pieces with scissors and put them in a large container.
2. pour nettle liquid manure with water.
You will also need about ten liters of water. Pour the required amount on the nettles, stir vigorously and make sure that all parts of the plant are covered with water.
3. add rock flour
Adding rock flour will bind the strong-smelling ingredients, as the smell of fermenting liquid manure can become very intense. A handful of compost or loam also reduces odor during fermentation. Cover the container so that it is permeable to air (for example, with a jute bag) and let the mixture steep for 10 to 14 days.
4. Stir the nettle liquid manure daily.
You must stir the liquid manure daily with a stick. The nettle liquid manure is ready when no more rising bubbles can be seen.
5. sieve the nettle liquid manure
Before use, sieve the fermented plant residues. You can then compost them or use them as mulch.
6. dilute nettle liquid manure with water before use.
Nettle liquid manure is applied diluted with water in a ratio of one to ten. It can be poured as a natural fertilizer and tonic or sprayed directly on all plants whose leaves are not consumed for pest control, which would otherwise be a somewhat unappetizing affair. Important: Before spraying, strain the liquid again through a cloth so that the nozzle is not clogged.
What is the difference between liquid manure and broth?
Plant slurries are made by fermenting plant parts in water. Broths, on the other hand, are made by letting the fresh plant parts steep in the water for a maximum of 24 hours – but usually only overnight – and finally simmering them again for about half an hour. The broth is then diluted and applied immediately. Plant broths have hardly any fertilizing effect and are therefore mainly used as plant strengtheners. In contrast to plant yeasts, they should be used as fresh as possible and do not keep for long.