Merri Bee Organic Fungal Dominated Vermicast ( MBOFDV !)
Oils aint oils, soils aint soils and compost ain’t compost! I’ve heard sawdust and synthetic fertilizer referred to as compost. So how do you tell a really good compost? Plant response may be misleading if synthetic fertilizers have been snuck into a poor commercial compost. One thing’s for sure, any compost wrapped in plastic doesnt even fit the scientific definition of compost which is “an oxidative decomposition of a mix of organic materials”. Dr Elaine Ingham.
In the same manner as traditional European bakers closely guard their sourdough culture, passing it on in the form of a lump of dough to be treasured down through the generations, Merri Bee Organic Farmacy’s fungal dominated Vermicast is a treasure containing living organisms most rare and valuable.
Since studying under Dr Elaine Ingham, U S soil microbiologist, in 2014, we’ve been devoted, (some say obsessed) with creating quality compost. Knowing the key to quality is DIVERSITY, we have scoured the seaside, the ancient native forests, visited gifted long- term practitioners of the composting art, sent off to scientists in America and joined secret societies in the quest for special microbes. Biodynamic preparations are a recent addition which has taken our compost to the next level.
But the backbone of our compost production is a huge diversity of green plant materials both native and exotic, a plethora of mature complex brown materials and a myriad of high nitrogen materials …..the manure , hair, scales feathers etc from not only our 8 species of organically fed and managed livestock but untold species of wildlife both land-based and marine. Interestingly it has been noticed by scientists that Quenda manure makes native plants grow twice as tall .
All the marvellous ingredients are put together in sufficient volume, in the right ratio and at the right moisture content to be an ideal breeding ground for the organisms which are introduced by inoculating the heap with some compost from a previous batch. We make our compost mindful of air quality at the time and needless to say do not use manure from conventional farms which would likely contain antibiotics, worm drenches and GM, or at least Roundup treated feed. We monitor temperature, turning when needed to expose all parts of the heap to temperatures above 55 C to kill pathogens and weed seeds but not exceeding 68 C in order to maintain the beneficial aerobic organisms.
It took a couple of years to achieve the Holy Grail of fungal dominance, and as many years again to breed up significant biomass of fungi, bacteria, protozoa, microarthropods, beneficial nematodes and composting worms to go to work on a few tons of new materials a week, gradually turning them into the black gold colloidal humus you now behold . In the famous line from Alan Sandler’s Happy Gilmore, “ this is high quality hand made shi*t” ! This fact isn’t lost on local farmers who have purchased a 20 liter bucket and made a lot of very effective compost tea with it. They state that the results were totally worth the $100 cost.
How do I use MBOFFDV ? Here’s the The Do’s and Dont’s
Please don’t let your Soil Food Web mini critters dry out! Neither should they be left in a waterlogged state or stored in plastic to go anerobic, nor should they be exposed to excessive heat or cold suddenly. Care must also be taken not to expose the organisms to ultra violet light. If it dries out slowly , some critters will go dormant and can be enticed to become active again when moisture levels are bought back to something like a wrung out sponge, but many will die. Neither should you store MBOFFDV for longer than 6 months as by then the woody debris, ie the fungal foods, will be digested into humus and your S.F. Web critters will start getting hungry. Rather than being held in storage in a shady place, they would prefer to be active in the garden where mixed mulches will feed them and living plant roots provide food through root exudates. Worms can get on with aerating the soil and transforming organic matter into humus, the carbon rich storage place for nutrients and water in the soil.
Merri Bee Vermicast is the ideal inoculant for your own compost heap or worm farm, where the organisms will happily come out of dormancy and breed in the presence of food, water and air, when the temperature and humidity is right for their individual species. You can put a handful of MBOFDV in a bucket of soil- temperature unchlorinated water, stir one way a while and then the other, creating a vortex then chaos, for 5 minutes or so. Most of the organisms should now be swimming in the water. This extract can be poured on your favorite plants. You should see a response in 3 weeks or so.
A twenty litre sack of MBOFDV could be applied to a damp garden bed of about half a square meter . Make sure it is damp throughout the profile, not just on top. Gardening is best done in the early morning or at the end of the day, to avoid UV . Mulch well, plant seeds and or seedlings, water well and stand back! The plant growth hormones, humic and fulvic acids in MBOFFDV can cause a flourishing that seems quite magical. The nutrient density of your plants demands you fence out any birds or animals that may raid your crops. The value of this produce in health dollar terms will certainly make it cost-effective to build a fence.
Using our vermi cast on your garden will begin or enhance a process that might take 3 years or more to complete…..the process of transforming poor, dysfunctional soil into a fully functioning fertile soil. MBOFFDV is a slow release fertilizer and works as a pesticide and fungicide. It contains predatory nematodes that feed on root feeding nematodes. The heaving throng of beneficial aerobic organisms will cover soil particles and plant surfaces, protecting them from disease and pest. At the same time the VAM Mychorrizal spores contained in MBOFFDV will germinate, grow towards plant roots, latch on and begin to grow out into the soil, thereby extending plant roots to obtain so much more nutrient and even funneling water to the plant. The plant, well fed with every trace element and macro mineral it needs (which the fungi and bacteria have unlocked from the sand,silt,pebbles, clay and presented in plant available form) will resist pest attack, frost damage and drought. The plant will make sugary root exudates out of atmospheric CO2 to feed the fungi in exchange for specific minerals it dissolves from rocks. This means your soil is now a carbon sink feeding your family nutrient dense foods whilst addressing climate change. WOW! Special pseudomonas bacteria will decompose toxins. Many of the billion bacteria per teaspoon full of vermicast will create bio slime or glues which form the microaggregates present in good soil. These “building bricks” of soil are joined by fungi and their glue “glomalin” in to macro aggregates and voila! The all- important crumb structure is created, ensuring your soil will soon absorb and hold water better, dramatically reducing irrigation costs . At the Farmacy we have gone from daily watering to weekly or even monthly at the 5 year mark. Placing a trowel full of MBOFFDV at the bottom of a planting hole is good practice to build the structure in the deeper layers of your soil.
Just a wiff of our product will start the 3 year process, and will usually give a noticeable plant response in under 3 weeks, but a 50 mm layer of MBOFFDV on any soil will pretty much immediately transform a difficult, dysfunctional soil into a fertile one. As usual, cost versus time applies. If you spend a lot, you don’t wait so long.
500 ml of MBOFFDV costs $5.00 plus postage (express postage to anywhere in Australia )
10 liters weighs about 3 kgs will cost you $ $25.00 plus postage ( about $15.00)
20 litres is $40 and weighs approximately 13 kgs.
A cubic meter costs $2500.00
Merri Bee Worm wee plus Anthony Quinlan’s pure fish hydrolysate and kelp $3.50 per 2 liter bottle.
We are really happy to receive back empty packaging for a generous re – fill.
Independent Quality Assessment
Soil Food Web Inc based in South Australia were engaged to do a qualitative assay of our compost in April 2020. Still awaiting results, but when they come to hand we will publish here.
Just one application of a compost solution made in a bucket as above will begin the regeneration of good soil as long as you maintain a mix of green living plants, a mulch cover and water. Those plants could very well initially be weeds. Welcome them, embrace them, be glad they are hosting your mychorrizal fungi and creating shade and plant residues. Do not use any icides or synthetic fertilizers but let your greenery grow. Mow or graze them off just before they set seed or go rank
. Soon they will have improved your soil so much they will not be needed any more and fruit and veges will flourish instead of weeds. It is the trio of soil microbes, animals and plants that co-evolved and built the soil on which all life depends, and all 3 are needed to regenerate deep, loose, fertile soil with ideal PH, good drainage yet water holding capacity, resistance to erosion and the ability to grow plants with health building properties. You and/ or friends and family will flourish as you eat salads covered in probiotic organisms. They are hard to wash off as they stick on with those carbon based glues.
We stand by our product so much so that we will happily eat a spoon full in front of you, rub it on our face and drink an extract, if you insist. The billion bacteria contained in a teaspoon are all beneficial as pathogens were killed at 55 during the composting process. The slime on an earthworm’s body is a supreme sanitizer and wipes out bad guy e coli and other such pathogens.
Soil borne probiotics are becoming recognized as having medical applications. Read more here
A man ( it would be) suggested I should just let my let my beetroots do the talking.. Here is my equally non- verbal male Stewart with a formidable bunch of beets grown in MBOFFDV.
If you would like to learn more about soil regeneration with soil health principles, using a microscope to assess compost, making a compost tea over many acres, and creating your own quality compost please consider doing our 2 day course “Symphony of the Soil in May” which will be held on May 25th & 26th, 2019. You receive my e book Nourishing Soil on sign up. Please email for further details firstname.lastname@example.org
MBOFFDV does contain composting worms and eggs and thousands of other soil dwelling species
more numerous than humans on the planet. I entrust them to your care. If you treat them well they will bring you great joy through good health from beautiful plants which will in turn attract beautiful birds, insects, darling little reptiles that eat slugs eggs, and many more. Wishing you a thriving inner and outer ecosystem based on the Soil Food Web.