How to Make Liquid Organic Fertilizer for Vegetable Gardens


One benefit of making your own organic liquid fertilizer is the speed in which these nutrients are delivered to the vegetables. Regular organic compost materials, such as aged manure or eggshells, take longer to break down into the soil and reach the plants. Organic liquid fertilizer helps aid in the soil's production of essential microorganisms which result in healthier and stronger vegetable plants.

Things You'll Need

  • Large bucket
  • Manure
  • Burlap bag
  • Garden string or twine
  • Long pole or broom handle
  • Thin rope
  • Pillowcase
  • Fill a large bucket 3/4 full with water. Let sit overnight to eliminate any chlorine if using regular tap water. Depending on the size of the vegetable garden crop, a 35- or 44-gallon trash bin with attached lid could also be used. The lid will help smells stay in and keep mosquitoes out.

  • Fill the burlap bag with fresh or decayed cow manure. The ratio of manure to water should roughly be about one-tenth to the amount of water used in the bucket or trash bin. Tie the bag securely closed with common garden string or twine.

  • Lay a pole or broom handle over the top of the bucket so that it rests horizontally on top. Tie the manure-filled burlap bag to the pole with thin rope or twine so that it hangs into the water. The manure bag should rest in the water for up to three weeks. Smaller buckets should be ready in one to two weeks, but give bigger containers more time to steep.

  • Add more water as needed if evaporation has dropped the level of water. If the bucket used does not have a lid, place in a location where the rotting manure smells will not be offensive. Aerate the mixture daily by grabbing the manure bag and vigorously "dunk" it up and down like you would a bag of tea. This daily agitation helps produce a higher quality mixture and speeds up the soaking process.

  • Dilute the manure "tea". For every four parts water, use one part of the manure concentrate. Strain the liquid fertilizer through an old, clean pillowcase to eliminate any stray particles that may have come out through the burlap manure bag. Use a watering can to spray the organic liquid fertilizer on all of your vegetable plants at least once a week. The spray can also be applied directly to the soil at ground level.

  • Dispose of the manure in the burlap bag by digging it into the ground or throwing it into the garden compost pile.

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  • Photo Credit cow. cow in farm/field image by L. Shat from
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