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Using Urine as Fertilizer

Using Urine as Fertilizer

Look at the size of the corn grown on urine vs the corn grown without urine. Amazing!

http://www.ecosanres.org/PDF%20files/Fact_sheets/ESR6lowres.pdf

Anyone feel like going to the bathroom now?

The following thread was started by Jonathan in San Francisco on October 20, 2005 at 8:52 pm PST


Warning

Warning: DO NOT PEE DIRECTLY ON OR AROUND YOUR PLANTS. You will burn them.

The above followup was added by Jonathan in San Francisco on October 20, 2005 at 9:07 pm PST.


bah

Everyone in Australia has being peeing on their citrus trees since forever : ) never burns them if it's only the pee of one person : )

The above followup was added by Jason on October 20, 2005 at 9:39 pm PST.


Seems we had this chat a year ago, when I added peeing on my avocado and banana trees once in awhile

Though to confess,I think I have only had the need only a couple times in this year. But I use rabbit manure once a year, and it has pee in some of it. Now we also have lots of cats in our yard, and they use all of my mulched beds for potty areas. But they move around from area to area. But lately they have been using the edges of the once 25 yards of potting soil which I had brought in. So when I am potting things up, I have to be careful of getting a gooey hand full. But that has never really happened, the soil dehydrates it fast into little hard cigars.

We have discussed before, the high usability of urine for plants. As things get more expensive in the US, I think we may see more of it. LIke which is done in other countries who don't have our vast cheap supply of man made fertilizers.

I read once too, at the right dilution, it makes a great winter/spring acid based spray for bacterial and fungal problems.

David

The above followup was added by DavidLJ48, Waterford CA, zone9 on October 21, 2005 at 0:11 am PST.


Seems like a good thing..

My grandfather use to use urine on his vegatables. Maybe this is something common in other countries. Either way my grandfathers veggies use to do pretty well so it must be a good thing.

The above followup was added by Franklin on October 21, 2005 at 2:23 pm PST.


monster melons

My grandma used to grow these melons from seeds. The melons were growing in some area which is mostly shade and very low in sunlight. She collected urine everyday in a plastic cut milk carton, and then used it to water the melon plant.

The end result was that the plant grew like a monster, and had huge leaves and thick stalk. It produced huge melons. I was like wholly smokes! So I really believe urine works. If it can do that with my fruiting trees (bigger fruit), I'm all for it. Urine is sterile, unlike manure.

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 21, 2005 at 10:43 pm PST.


In the old days : )

My Grandma told me the Chinese immigrants that used to live in Melbourne near her grew all their veges with their own urine and poo! she never found that out at first but she said they allways grew the biggest and best veges in Melbourne. There was a crazy guy on tv here about 10? years ago he called himself Mr Poo or Captain Poo or something like that. He wanted the goverment to stop wasting human poo and use it as fertilizer because he said it was the best and most availible stuff but although he was famous for 6 months or a year people forgot about his mission after awhile, but he tried his best

The above followup was added by Jason on October 22, 2005 at 5:02 am PST.


Manure is too yucky

It is much easier to get people to use piss than poo. I hate the thought of poo. I wouldn't even go near composted poo. But I don't mind diluted piss around trees. I'm trying it right now, and I don't smell anything at all.

I'm experimenting now with the following combo:

thick mulch, burried kitchen compost, earthworm culture, and piss on plant and mulch combination. And of course loamy 1/4 sandy soil.

I'm trying to breed the digging earthworms (not the compost earthworm), because I intend to release the eggs into my soil to push up my worm population.

My thick mulch that I keep moist is create a habitat that attract earthworms to my spots.

I don't like redwood chips. They'll kill your worms.

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 22, 2005 at 12:45 am PST.


pee pee away (on your queenpalms at least!)

I hate to admit, but I have dome so on my quuen palms which thrived after I started doing this regularly. I imagine certain plants are "burned" but not sure which ones. Pee is full of nitrogenous wastes, and needless to say palms love that.

carlo

The above followup was added by CARLO on October 22, 2005 at 1:31 pm PST.


Jonathan, I use only mulch, fish emulsion and rabbit maure.

I have learned as you do, let nature so what it does best, don't feed the plants, feed the soil and the earthworms and bacteria and etc.

Rabbit manure is nice, as it is in pellet form and not burning, at least not on the surface. I find earthworms will almost immediately move in and live in the stuff once dampened. It is nice having naturally pelleted fertilizer.

Also on human poo and you guys are saying it. When I was in Taiwan during the Viet Nam Era, I noticed huge trunk loads of stuff and paper out in the fields at a distance. I asked someone and they said it was heat treated human waste with paper garbage. The cities and larger town collect it and heat treat it to kill all living organisms. Then the farmers buy it to fertilize their crops. Sounds sort of nasty, but we in more quote civilized nations are flushing and washing away a lot valuable materials.


Though here even in the US, water in the city sewer ponds are sometimes sold to nearby farmers and they run it out into their crop lands. And of course the treated poo at the bottom of the filtration ponds are cleaned out from time to time and sold as fertilizers, and normally sold as sewer sludge or etc.

Using our poo sounds bad, and it does, but it is partly due to what we eat. If one eats mostly whole natural foods and stay away from meat and diary products, ours is not so unlike that of a sheep of cow.

Being a vegetarian and eating close to what I just described, I can put my urine in a jar and in a week a month it is nearly the same in looks and smell as when I put there.

Now my wife had a wheel chair handicapped son who likes to find jar and etc to use, instead of heading to the bathroom. He eats mostly tacos, pizza, and meat and just plain old junk food. His urine after a few hours really stinks, and after a few days it has turned milky and scummy and you don't want to even open it, if it has a lid on it.

David

The above followup was added by DavidLJ48, Waterford CA, zone9 on October 22, 2005 at 1:32 pm PST.


Rabbit Droppings Are Great!

David, the rabbit pellets are a big plus. I'm sure the worms love those. I had a guinea pig before, and the areas that I dumped their droppings at ended up with worms migrating to the area to feed. For this reason, I'm going to get a Guinea Pig.

I don't mind Guinea Pig or rabbit droppings. They are solid, and don't smell much. It is their concentrated piss that smells.

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 22, 2005 at 5:53 pm PST.


Resources for using urine for soil fertility

It is interesting to hear how common using urine is, from your personal and family experiences I have read here.

My experience is that urine should be applied to (in my order of preference):

1)areas of deep mulch (or other organic matter, like compost piles),

2)larger plants directly (if diluted 4 parts water to 1 part urine, or if rain or irrigation flushes away potential salt build up

3) if spending alot of time indoors, urinating into a 5 gallon plastic bucket (with lid) that is filled with sawdust (which absorbs odors and when full, has a nice Carbon:Nitrogen balance for use in compost piles or layered with other types of mulch around trees). Most women need to have a comfortable seat to use such a pee bucket.


Some folks have really gotten into promoting the benefits of gardening with 'Liquid Gold'. See:

Liquid Gold: The Lore and Logic of Using Urine to Grow Plant

http://www.liquidgoldbook.com

Good fun, while very informative.

My favoritte book on the subject of human waste and soil fertility is published by the John Jeavons 'Biointensive' gardening folks:

Future Fertility
Transforming Human Waste Into Human Wealth
John Beeby, 1995, 164 pp.

http://www.bountifulgardens.org/shop/compost-fertility.html

This book points out there is actually more nutrients contained in a year's worth of urine, than contained in a year's worth of feces.

As compared to feces, Urine has the benefit of being relatively sterile, unless the person has an illness. Also antibiotics and excess hormones are excreted through the urine (makes you think about animal waste pollutants too, though composting, and soil life, do decompose these to some degree). We are all connected.

Perhaps related subjects that need more thought which may be taken up in another thread:

Greywater use in the orchard

Humane manure use in the orchard

As a matter of fact, I gotta go now!
John

The above followup was added by John Valenzuela, Novato CA on October 24, 2005 at 1:05 pm PST.
Resources for using urine for soil fertility

It is interesting to hear how common using urine is, from your personal and family experiences I have read here.

My experience is that urine should be applied to (in my order of preference):

1)areas of deep mulch (or other organic matter, like compost piles),

2)larger plants directly (if diluted 4 parts water to 1 part urine, or if rain or irrigation flushes away potential salt build up

3) if spending alot of time indoors, urinating into a 5 gallon plastic bucket (with lid) that is filled with sawdust (which absorbs odors and when full, has a nice Carbon:Nitrogen balance for use in compost piles or layered with other types of mulch around trees). Most women need to have a comfortable seat to use such a pee bucket.


Some folks have really gotten into promoting the benefits of gardening with 'Liquid Gold'. See:

Liquid Gold: The Lore and Logic of Using Urine to Grow Plant

http://www.liquidgoldbook.com

Good fun, while very informative.

My favoritte book on the subject of human waste and soil fertility is published by the John Jeavons 'Biointensive' gardening folks:

Future Fertility
Transforming Human Waste Into Human Wealth
John Beeby, 1995, 164 pp.

http://www.bountifulgardens.org/shop/compost-fertility.html

This book points out there is actually more nutrients contained in a year's worth of urine, than contained in a year's worth of feces.

As compared to feces, Urine has the benefit of being relatively sterile, unless the person has an illness. Also antibiotics and excess hormones are excreted through the urine (makes you think about animal waste pollutants too, though composting, and soil life, do decompose these to some degree). We are all connected.

Perhaps related subjects that need more thought which may be taken up in another thread:

Greywater use in the orchard

Humane manure use in the orchard

As a matter of fact, I gotta go now!
John

The above followup was added by John Valenzuela, Novato CA on October 24, 2005 at 1:08 pm PST.
You produce more than you realize at first.

I started collecting my own urine in a 64 ounce bottle and I fill up at least 1.25 of those bottles a day. I'm surprised how much piss I have! I just piss into a tropicana bottle, and close the lid afterwards. No smell at all. The amount of piss sure adds up quick. At this rate I can fertilize the entire yard in 2 weeks.

The other benefit of peeing in a bottle everytime is that I save water because I don't have to use water to flush the toilet anymore.

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 25, 2005 at 2:45 am PST.


Hmmmmm

Tried it out three days ago on my satsuma mandarin, and it's pushing out new growth, it's been doing nothing for quite a while before that!

This can't be good for the environment, and it's not good hygiene. Plus it stinks. But it works.

Axel

The above followup was added by Axel on October 25, 2005 at 3:11 pm PST.


Axel, Urine is sterile

I think if you don't keep using the same spot every time, it may not notice the smell at all.

I have only done it a few times when the bathroom was busy at night. but I used to have step sons which I know did it fairly often, who knows where, and I have never noticed a oder.

Now when my wifes dog keeps peeing in the same area, after awhile it begins to smell, especially after I water the area or at first rain.

Feces is the only waste product that I know of which is really a health hazard if not handle properly. And much of that is determined othreat is how much of a meat eater that person is. A person eating a Vegetarian diet should have feces not much worse then a cow or a sheep, except it might smell worse.

Talking about smelling worse, what about all of the dogs and cats some of us have , which are turning our yards in to one big potty box, I am guilty there.

But I bet my plants don't mine.

David

The above followup was added by DavidLJ48, Waterford CA, zone9 on October 25, 2005 at 4:53 pm PST.


Urine Doesn't Smell If You Dilute It Before Applying...

Axel, it wouldn't smell if you dilute it about 1 part urine to 10 part water. Sometimes, I get away with 1 to 3. And if you dump it on the compost pile, it wouldn't smell either after the bacteria gets through with it.

I dump my piss at 1 part urine to 2 part water concentration into the compost pile to speed it up. I got my compost pile from a local tree / brush recycling company. I must have gotten like 40 garbage bags worth of shredded compost.

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 25, 2005 at 5:25 pm PST.


Calamadins Fruit Swelling After Urine...

Since I applied the urine about a week ago, my calamadins are swelling up in size.
Urine seems to work wonders.

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 25, 2005 at 5:29 pm PST.


Urine as anti ??? a plant leaf spray

I don't remember the exact details, but in a Organic Gardening mag nearly a couple decades ago now. There was an article about using diluted urine in water as a early spring spray for a number of bacterial and fungal problems, instead of the usual more toxic sprays.

Seems the ratio of water to urine was pretty high,

David

The above followup was added by DavidLJ48, Waterford CA, zone9 on October 25, 2005 at 5:39 pm PST.


hate to beat a dead horse.....

I have a friend in Orinda,CA (near oakland) who has 2 queen palms flanking his house. He has peed on the left one for years, and not on the right one. The left is almost twice as big!

By the way, urine is NOT sterile. Bacteria contaminate urine as it exits! FYI!!! :>)

The above followup was added by CARLO on October 26, 2005 at 3:47 pm PST.


Chemical in urine that may act as fungicide

David, I remember reading somewhere that it may be the sulfur or formaldehyde in the urine that acts as a fungicide. Any has any takes on this?

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 26, 2005 at 6:01 pm PST.


Chemicals in urine

In my opinion, chemical fertilizers would like to make you believe that N, K, P is all that matters for fertilizer. I'm thinking there is more to this equation than what we currently know about plant nutrition, and we can only guess what they might be.

Besides Nitrogen, Potassium, and Phosphorus, there are lots of other chemicals in Urine.

arsenic 0.137 mg/L
Arsenobetaine 0.069 mg/L
Dimethylarsinic acid 0.036 mg/L
selenium 0.059 mg/L
zinc 0.62 mg/L
sulfur
formaldehyde
salts such as sodium chloride
Urea
plant growth hormones such as auxins
other minerals...
organic matter

The salt in the urine may be a problem...

The above followup was added by Jonathan on October 26, 2005 at 6:24 pm PST.


Jonathan, you are correct commercial fertilizers very incomplete

One good reason to use fish fertilizer and mulches on the soil your soil. I wish dried ground seaweed was more available and not so expensive.

One good thing about rabbit manure and other manures by animals which eat a lot of alfalfa and etc. Alfalfa has deep roots which brings up a lot o macro and micro minerals. Besides rabbit or etc manure, I guess just adding something like alfalfa to your mulch layers would be really good.

Amazing I knew urine was really good for plant in certain doses, but the Queens speak for them selves on the matter.

I really have to wonder how much good all of the darn cats do in the back yard. it seems they keep moving around my yard. When I first lay down mulch they leave it along until it b breaks down about half way or more, then they work it over good, then move on to another area.

If the world gets worse economically, we may all be depending on such basic fertilizers as our own urine and maybe more.

David

The above followup was added by DavidLJ48, Waterford CA, zone9 on October 26, 2005 at 8:41 pm PST.


Most Interesting

I have to admit & hate to admit that this has to be one of the most interesting topics I've seen in any of the forums for quite sometime!

We have lots of rabbits so finding their scat shouldn't prove difficult. As for peeing on my plants? I have done this to our shrubs outside late at night taking the dog out. You know...giving her company??

I'm in Ohio and all of my fruit trees are in containers and now inside the house, so peeing on them may pose a problem...especially if my aim is a bit off! I don't want to forget that the window in the plant room has no blinds either. I don't think my wife would appreciate me keeping it in a container either... "Hey! Whoa!! That's not water!!" Could be ugly. I could add it to the sprinkler can and dilute that I suppose. I think this would be one of those "secrets" you keep from your spouse. She already thinks I'm crazy for growing all these plants. Hmmm...be a nice journal entry though ..."Nov. 2, 2005, 8:30 pm, peed on mangosteens".

The above followup was added by Jay on November 02, 2005 at 5:12 am PST.


Most Interesting

I tried posting this once, showed up with nothing in it and then disappeared. So if it pops up later, disregard.

I have to admit & hate to admit that this has been the most interesting, and odd, topic I've seen in the forums in quite some time!

Rabbits are all over the place so collecting their scat should not prove too difficult. Should help some.

As for urine? I've let loose on some bushes in the yard while taking the dog out late at night. Providing companionship of course. I live in Ohio so all of my plants are currently in containers and inside the house this time of year. So peeing on my plants may be a challenge...especially on some of the smaller subjects. Just hope my aim is true...can't forget that the window in the plant room has no blinds/curtains either!

I don't think keeping a stock of pee in a container is a good option for me either. "Hey! Whoa! Honey that's not water!". Maybe peeing in the sprinkler can and then topping off from the bathtub faucet may work. This is also probably one of those items you keep secret from your spouse. Mine already thinks I'm crazy for growing all of these plants in the first place. This should also make for an interesting plant journal entry: "Nov. 2, 2005, 8:30 p.m., peed on mangosteens.".

In all seriousness though, would this be something I could add to my plants often or what? I'd really hate to answer the question as to why a plant died!

The above followup was added by Jay Cotterman on November 02, 2005 at 5:49 am PST.


watch out for salt concentration

Jay, if all your plants are in containers, one problem you will run into is the accumulation of salt. That would not be good for your plants.
However, in the ground, you can get away with more, as the water leaches the salt down and away.

You don't need to piss on the plants often (keep salt concentration in mind). Maybe once every month or so is more than adequate to fertilize the tree. Just to be safe, I dilute the piss with water to make sure it doesn't burn any sensitive roots.

The above followup was added by Jonathan on November 02, 2005 at 7:14 pm PST.


Urine is antisceptic

I remember 40-50 years ago when modern chemicals for treatment of deep cuts were not readily avaiable, people were encouraged to pee on their own cuts and burns,etc. If this was not possible a young lad was asked to do so, with excellent results!

The above followup was added by Hasan on November 05, 2005 at 2:00 pm PST.


Urea Concentrator

I am an organic farmer. My plants, cranberries, require urea or ammonia at critical points in their developement. (Nitates and nitrites are not acceptable.) Hence I am looking for a method to concentrate the urea from urine through the year, store it and then apply it. I realize urine will decompose and can become explosive if stored. Does anyone have a good technique?

The above followup was added by David Smith on January 05, 2006 at 7:22 pm PST.


storing urine

drop the pH with some vinegar or what have you and it will store much longer, nitrogen off-gassing will be slowed quite a bit

The above followup was added by conrad on January 26, 2006 at 4:51 pm PST.


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