Worm tea Quick Fix for Ailing Flowers

One of my clients recently started dousing her plants with worm tea.  This is the liquid that drains out of the bottom of the worm bin.  She claims that it’s making everything go crazy.  My own impression is similar.  Her campanulata, for instance, which had never seemed to do much now are spilling into the lawn and over the edges of the box where they were planted.  Her Peruvian lilies are also lush and blooming prolifically.  The impatiens still look beaten down in this heat we’re having, but on the other hand, ferns, irises, Santa Barbara daisies are all more than holding their own.

One of my clients, Dr. Allan Rabin, is a psychiatrist, and me being unsure of what to think, lent him my book on sustainable gardening techniques.  He read it, and we had a conversation.  “It’s not the fertilizer, Dennis, in the worm tea that’s doing it,”  he said to me.

“No?” I responded.  “If not the fertilizer then what?”

“It’s the hormones.  Plants aren’t any different from us.  The chemicals are practically the same.   The worm tea is the same as giving them hormone therapy.”

The lesson:  if you’re looking for a way to get some lush growth and quick color from existing landscape plants, give them worm tea.


How Landscapes Speak

Landscapes communicate to us even when we are not aware of it.  A home for sale is a great example of this.  Here are some things the landscape might be saying:

Flowers: “Welcome!”

A well-tended lawn, or better yet, a sward or meadow:  “You are in a healthy environment.”

A graceful tree:  “I protect this place; this is a place of refuge.”

On the other hand, the landscape can send less welcoming messages too.

Overgrown shrubs:  “Something may be lurking around the corner.”

Weeds:  “You have work  in your near future.”