The difference between Vermicompost and compost is that in the production of Vermicompost, compost is used as a raw material that is processed by earthworms. The worms impart the following special properties to the fertilizer.
1. Vermicompost is a mechanically strong granules formed by worms... These granules make the soil light, crumbly and practically not washed out of the soil.
2. Due to its high moisture content (300%) and water-retaining capacity, Vermicompost absorbs a large amount of moisture and gradually releases it only during dry periods. This reduces the need for watering and allows plants to thrive even when there is no way to water them regularly.
3. Vermicompost lasts 4-5 years, gradually giving plants valuable substances. This is important for two reasons. First, when planting perennial plants, Biohumus allows you to provide them with nutrition and phytohormones for a long time. Secondly, there are no sharp jumps in the supply of nutrients. Have you ever noticed that if you fertilize a particular crop well with manure or a mineral mixture, it grows well, and the next year it can get very sick? This is easy to explain. If the influx of salts into the plant tissue is too intense, the natural balance of substances is disturbed, and it can no longer fully develop. By the way, it is precisely because of the ability to gradually transfer nutrients to plants that Biohumus can be applied at any time of the year, without observing strictly regulated terms.
4. The nutrients are converted by worms into forms that are readily available to plants. After processing the compost with worms, the content of mobile nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and humic substances increases significantly. Special glands of worms produce phytohormones, enzymes, vitamins, as well as biogenic calcium, which is not contained in compost.
5. Worms enrich Biohumus with useful soil microorganisms. After the compost has been treated with worms, the number of microorganisms characteristic of natural ecosystems increases more than a thousand times. The number of nitrogen-fixing and phosphoric-mobilizing bacteria increases, while the number of bacteria that harm plants decreases.
6. Vermicompost reduces the amount of harmful substances in soil and plants. This effect of Biohumus is so serious that it is successfully used for the remidiation of lands polluted by spills of oil products. The use of Biohumus even on ordinary agricultural lands leads to a decrease in the content of radionuclides, metabolites, pesticides in plants by 1.5-2 times, the ingress of salts of heavy metals into plants is blocked. All this significantly reduces the likelihood of allergic reactions when eating vegetables and fruits, especially in children. By the way, Biohumus is non-toxic. The hazard class assigned to it is the same as, for example, river sand.
7. Vermicompost is convenient and aesthetically pleasing to use. For example, unlike the traditionally used manure, it smells pleasantly of forest soil, there are no pathogenic bacteria and weed seeds in Biohumus.
8. Vermicompost is able to treat plants, oppressed by an overdose of other fertilizers... For example, I have already used Biohumus many times for the treatment of lawns in which bald spots have appeared after too active application of mineral fertilizers. In these cases, Biohumus restores the soil in a few weeks.
The only negative feature of Biohumus is that it is more expensive than compost. However, gardeners who are willing to invest in their land will ultimately be happy with the price-to-value ratio.
At the same time, you should know several points in order to distinguish high-quality Biohumus, completely processed by worms.
For example, the largest producer of Biohumus in Russia, located in Altai (trade mark "Doctor Rost"), has the following recommendations:
- Vermicompost is made from compost, so it should not contain any inclusions with a characteristic type of peat.
- Vermicompost is granules with a diameter of 0.1-3mm with a pleasant smell of earth. If the mass is powdery (from small fragile particles), or it has a characteristic unpleasant odor, then it is most likely not compost processed by worms.
- High-quality Biohumus should be dried to a crumbly state. If Biohumus is a sticky mass, then the process of humification has not passed in it.
- The package must contain the registration number with the State Chemical Commission of the Russian Federation. If this number is absent, then the sale of such fertilizer on the territory of Russia is prohibited.
- And, of course, one should be very careful with Biohumus with a very low price - because of the long and complicated production process, Vermicompost cannot be a cheap fertilizer.
Biohumus can be used as follows
- When planting, adding it to the planting hole (hole).
- Treatment and feeding (Vermicompost with a thickness of 1-2 cm is poured over the root system of the plant and embedded in the upper soil layer).
- Restoration of poor soil - scatter 2-3 liters of Biohumus per square meter of soil and embed it in the top layer of soil.
- When preparing the soil, Biohumus is mixed with the soil or added to standard soil mixtures (10-20%).
- Lawns can be fertilized with Vermicompost by simply scattering it over the surface (1-3 liters per square meter) and combing the lawn with a rake so that Vermicompost gets to the soil.
- Seeds and cuttings are soaked in an aqueous infusion of Biohumus, and plants are sprayed and watered with it.