Preppers: Making Your Own Fertilizer
Kevin Felts 03.20.18
Part of the prepper/survivalist ideology is being somewhat self-sufficient. With that in mind, how would preppers make their own fertilizer? Why would anyone need to make their own fertilizer? Some examples could include viral plague, nuclear war, economic collapse.
What are the basics of modern fertilizer?
- Nitrogen – Manure and urine, decaying organic material.
- Phosphorus – Bone meal.
- Potassium – Potash.
What do each of those do?
- Nitrogen – leafy greens. Examples would be turnip greens spinach, corn, cabbage, anything with a large leaf.
- Phosphorus – root growth and root crops. Potatoes use bone meal and phosphorus.
- Potassium – beans and peas.
Where could those three items be found at? The manure and potash are going to be easy to find. The bone meal is going to be a little more difficult.
We are going to start off with some good top soil. Look for soil that has been composting under trees, such as oak and sweet gum leaves.
Throw some shovel loads of top soil into a wheelbarrow. Then mix in some aged manure. Chicken manure has a high nitrogen content, so let it age for a little bit before using it as fertilizer. Some of the best manure to use is rabbit manure.
Have a fireplace or smoker? Then you have a source of potash.
This should cover most needs, except potatoes and other root crops.
Mix everything together in the wheelbarrow.
Organic Material Fertilizer
Something that I have always wondered about, why didn’t the idea of using organic material besides manure catch on in England? When settlers arrived in the New World, Native Americans showed them how fish was used as fertilizer for crops.
Rather than using fish, I started an experiment with using an egg and placing it under a tomato and pepper plant. A small hole was poked in the egg. This was so the egg would not build up pressure and explode, like rotten eggs do.
Hopefully the roots of the plants will be able to use the egg as organic fertilizer, along with the aged manure and ashes from the smoker.
As the peppers and tomatoes come along updates will be posted.