Sunday, June 21, 2009
Once I learned that EM® is all about fermentation, the world got a bit bigger to me. I should note here that I am also the type of person who is never really exact about measuring things and should let anyone reading this know that it is generally pretty difficult to mess up with EM and always tell people to relax and not worry about doing something wrong. For instance, it's not like the bokashi you make is not going to work if you put in 3/4 C of EM-1® and 1/2 molasses or thereabouts. Likewise, if you use 1/2 cup EM-1® and 1/2 cup molasses to make a gallon of Activated EM-1®, it is going to ferment. So, don't worry so much about getting all the measurements exact.
Now, back to the fermented plant extracts....
If we look back at foods, think of all the extracts (mostly herbal) on the market. Most, if not all, are made from steeping the herbs in a strong solution of alchohol. The alcohol pulls the properties out of the herb into the liquid. The liquid is them sold for a high dollar. Likewise, there are other methods using vinegar. Well, you can do something very similar using the regular Activated EM1 formula of 1:1:20 and adding in fresh herbs to the container before fermentation begins.
To ensure the extraction process work well, let the material ferment for around 4 weeks. If you check the brew periodically (give it a good whiff), you'll notice the smell of the herb will intensify over time and eventually almost overtake the smell of the EM-1®. A good first batch to try is with garlic. Try this:
To make one gallon Garlic Extract:
1/2 Cup EM-1®
1/2 Cup Molasses
2 cloves garlic (diced or thinly sliced)
Fill container with very warm water (bath temperature)
Close container to keep it airtight. Release pressure in container during fermentation.
This is great to spray on plants at a rate of 1 to 2 ounces per gallon of water. Look at some garlic products on the market and look at what they are used for. You just made one gallon of something for less than $5 that would normally cost you several times that.