Friday, May 10, 2013

Making Beneficial Bonemeal For Your Garden

In a healthy home most, if not all things consumed, can be turned back into the life cycle of our homes and gardens. This is also true of making your own soil amendments for the garden. Making bonemeal for your garden in particular helps control the quality of the bone meal, since you would be making it from the anti-biotic and hormone free bones from your dinner. This can be done with any type of bones, even from the dinner bones collected for you from your neighbors if you don't eat meat.


Once the bones are largely free of meat, place the bones into a cooking pot and cover them with water. Add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar per quart of water. Bring this to a boil until  cooked down to the last bits of water, then simmer that off too. This all breaks down the constituents of bone and makes them soft enough to break. Now, place the bones into a baking dish and bake in the oven on low heat until they are dry and brittle. Cool, and put them into a plastic bag. Wrap that in a dish towel, put that into another plastic bag. Now, either hit this bag against some cement or a rock, or just take a hammer to the bag. This not only gives us a good cardio-workout breaking the bones, but also relieves plenty of pent-up frustration in the process, a handy therapy for these trying days! Bone meal can be made as the bones are available and then stored in a metal can for use when needed. And please do store it in a metal can, as animals and bugs really like to get into it.

When you are ready to use your home-made bone meal, mix it into the soil around your herbs or into the soil before you plant.   It's a good source of phosphorus, which helps with root system growth, for better flower, fruit and seed development, and vitamin content.

Bone meal is also a source of nitrogen, which is a general herb growth promoter and helps the herbs ability to make proteins. If you see that your herbs are sickly or spindly looking, the  nitrogen source in the bone also tends to give them strength and vigor.

If you've enjoyed this wee tutorial, listen to my whole audio series: Village Herbalist Planting The Cure on HerbMentor

Blessings on your healing garden pursuits!