laurielee33
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Extracting nutrients from compost for use with hydroponics

Hi there. Does anyone have any information on extracting nutrients from compost in order for use in a hydroponics system? is this possible without expensive processing equipment? i ask because if its possible it makes a lot more sense to make your own (with your own compost) than buying it. Thanks!

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Extracting nutrients from compost for use with hydroponi

"extracting nutrients from compost" I think is what we call making compost tea. There's a whole big thread on compost tea at the top of this Composting Forum. But part of the point of brewing the compost tea is not just extracting the nutrients, it is culturing a whole bunch of beneficial micro-organisms. I'm not sure if that is what you want for hydroponics.

I've never done hydro and it always seems way too technical. The nutrient levels are all calibrated in PPMs and the pH has to be kept balanced. No matter how you extracted nutrients from your compost, I don't think there's any way you can know the concentrations of the different macro and micro nutrients.

I like how you are thinking, but not sure it is practical. But hopefully someone will come by who knows more about hydro than I do....
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imafan26
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Re: Extracting nutrients from compost for use with hydroponi

Compost would not have enough nutrients to support a hydo system. You still need to provide the rest. There are organic hydro formulas but from what I hear, they are not very good. Aquaponics on the other hand does have possibilities.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

laurielee33
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Re: Extracting nutrients from compost for use with hydroponi

Many thanks for the reply's. I am not expecting to create a nutrient solution as 'potent' as the one one you would buy. just something which can provide the plants with enough to grow. as far as i understand, compost is vegetable matter which has been broken down by microorganisms into a form which can be absorbed by the plants. this is usually simply turned into the soil. my idea was to extract it (if indeed they are water soluble) and use it in a hydroponics system. the reason for the hydro system is because i don't have a garden anyway and i hear that plants are better able to absorb nutrients through the water and also get ample oxygen. am i misinformed in any of these points?

toxcrusadr
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Re: Extracting nutrients from compost for use with hydroponi

I would think that a container garden (i.e. pots) would work quite well in your situation and be less technical and fussy than hydro. It requires a container mix that can incorporate compost as one ingredient (if you make your own mix, and there are recipes depending on what you are growing). Also you can use compost tea to water containers.
Tox

imafan26
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Re: Extracting nutrients from compost for use with hydroponi

Compost tea is not suitable to sustain a hydro system. You need to use hydroponic solution. There are organic hydroponic solutions but they are not popular because the results are poor.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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