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DIY Soil Inoculant  RSS feed

 
Luiz Eduardo Piá de Andrade
Posts: 23
Location: Curitiba, Brazil
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I'm in the planning stage of my food forest and would like to add some life to my barren soil. I tried finding commercial inoculants, such as mycogrow, with many species of fungi and bacteria, but couldn't find any in Brazil. I've been looking for DIY alternatives and stumbled upon one that involves leaving cooked rice in the forest for a while then processing it and feeding your soil, but the recipe seemed quite complicated and process takes quite a while anyway - I won't stay here for very long.
I came up with the idea of taking a little bit of forest soil, adding some (vermi)compost and dry and fresh leaves and put it all in a bucketful of water with an aeration system. That water could after a few days/weeks be used in the soil. Would that work?
 
M.R.J. Smith
Posts: 73
Location: North Idaho at 975m elevation on steep western slope, 60cm annual precipitation, zone 4
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Luiz Eduardo Piá de Andrade wrote: I came up with the idea of taking a little bit of forest soil, adding some (vermi)compost and dry and fresh leaves and put it all in a bucketful of water with an aeration system. That water could after a few days/weeks be used in the soil. Would that work?


That's about what I was going to suggest. Probably wouldn't even need to do the whole bucket thing. Throw some established forest soil of whatever type of tree you are going to plant in the hole and let her rip. Another good thing to do is just sheet mulch the area or plant cover crops that will be sacrificial. If your ground is totally bare and hard pan, consider aerating the soil with some kind of machine (there are many types.)
 
Zach Muller
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Location: NE Oklahoma zone 7a
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Hello Luis welcome to the forum. It sounds like you have some good ideas already. Adding forest soil can add some diversity to the microbes, and vermicompost is known for being one of the best amendments available. Depending on the volume of compost you have, making an aerated compost tea might be a way to stretch it for more coverage.

You could also hunt some mushrooms and make a mushroom slurry to pour onto the soil for very little expense. I have had a lot of luck increasing my soil fungi using aerated compost tea with just vermicompost and molasses.
Another thing you could look into is biochar, some other members on this forum have posted good info about making and using it.

I would not worry about not finding commercial inoculate because in most cases people will do just fine with being creative and finding fertility closer to home. Good luck on your food forest.
 
Luiz Eduardo Piá de Andrade
Posts: 23
Location: Curitiba, Brazil
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It's a 500m²-ish area covered with grass. My idea to prepare the soil is to first amend the soil with gypsum, open up the soil with a fork, smother the grasses with sheet mulch and once it's broken down somewhat, plant a leguminous ground cover. I think adding forest soil as it is into the mix will require huge amounts of it, and I would rather remove as little as possible, hence the idea of creating an environment to multiply them, the "forest soil compost tea".
 
M.R.J. Smith
Posts: 73
Location: North Idaho at 975m elevation on steep western slope, 60cm annual precipitation, zone 4
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Sounds good. Once you get a little life in there, it will grow itself so you don't need to cover it all with forest soil I don't think.
 
John Elliott
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Zach Muller wrote:

You could also hunt some mushrooms and make a mushroom slurry to pour onto the soil for very little expense. I have had a lot of luck increasing my soil fungi using aerated compost tea with just vermicompost and molasses.



What Zach said. Any mushrooms will do, just keep releasing their spores over your land and soon your soil will be inoculated.
 
Isaiah Ari Mattathias
Posts: 80
Location: Oregon
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What are your thoughts on intensively rotating cows, chickens or even goats? Build up the manure, then add all of the other things?
 
Luiz Eduardo Piá de Andrade
Posts: 23
Location: Curitiba, Brazil
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Should work, but kinda complicated in a 500m² suburban land
 
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