red adidas trainers Llama Bean tea party
Llama Bean tea is supposed to add nitrogen to the soil, helping the plants to flourish and enabling me and my housemates to use less water on the 12 raised beds in our backyard.
I spent $5 on a bag of llama poop Tuesday at the Grower’s Market.
Actually, this delicious brew is for my plants. It’s supposed to add nitrogen to the soil, helping the plants to flourish and enabling me and my housemates to use less water on the 12 raised beds in our backyard.
“It’s the highest in nitrogen of all the barnyard fertilizers,” said Diana Rasmusson, who started selling Llama Beans this year. Llamas at her Frolic ‘n Fibers farm in Sams Valley produce the “beans.”
Llama manure is 1.7 percent nitrogen, according to Rasmusson.
Chickens, horses, sheep, cows and pigs produce manure that’s 1 percent nitrogen or less. How do you say “weak” in llama language?
I love llamas, and not just because they produce excellent manure. Mainly I love them because they’re so weird looking. It’s like nature took the camel and said, “Hmm ” how can we make this even freakier?”
Rasmusson keeps a photo album of her family’s llamas on a table at her Grower’s Market stand. She has five females and one male, named Mr. T. Yes, as in “The A Team” and “Rocky III,” those ’80s jewels.
By the looks of it, Mr. T The Llama is living up to his name. He is one cool llama. And when he thinks about the pigs on the neighbor’s farm producing manure that’s merely .5 percent nitrogen, I just know he says: “I pity the fools!”
Rasmusson told me all about her llamas, and how she’s been using their manure in her garden for the past seven years.
“The Llama Beans are what we call a value added product, because we already use their wool,” she said. “And we just keep getting more poop. We just keep feeding them.”
That’s my kind of business. Not just because it’s easy but because it’s also ecologically awesome. The Rasmussons aren’t letting even their llamas’ waste go to waste. They’re literally going green from the ground up.
They sell Llama Beans in $5 and $10 burlap bags, or by the tractor scoop. That’s a whole lotta llama poo.
You can use the beans as mulch or mix a cup of them with a gallon of water to make Llama Bean tea. Each cup of beans can make at least eight gallons of tea,
Rasmusson said. A $5 bag of Llama Beans makes about 32 gallons of tea, and a $10 bag makes about 120 gallons, she said.
The beans should be left to soak in water for a day or two, until the water is tea colored, she said.
Then, you serve it to your plants. The water is nearly odorless, so it can be used to water indoor or outdoor plants. The beans themselves smell like dirt, not manure.
“They are not ‘hot’ due to the absence of organic material, which means you can use them ‘right out of the llama,'” the Llama Beans pamphlet reads.
I think Mr. T might take issue with part of that sentence. I’m sure he thinks his beans are pretty hot.
It’s too soon to tell how effective Llama Bean tea will be for our garden. But our cold weather crops do appear to be thriving.
We’ve planted onions, carrots, beets, lettuce, cabbage, kale, peas, turnips and radishes so far. My housemate, a landscape designer, created a cloche, or row covering, to shield our crops from the cold. This allowed us to begin planting lettuce, kale and cabbage in early February. Late last month,
we planted other cold weather crops.