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Algae as fertilier

Discussion in 'Nursery' started by thewalnutguy, Aug 15, 2016.

  1. thewalnutguy

    thewalnutguy ArboristSite Lurker

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    I've got a 10 acre field of black walnuts I started as bare root seedlings about 30 years ago. Field is starting to look pretty nice, almost like a park. Just across the road from me is a good size pond with algae scum so thick it tempts one to try walking across it in the summer. There's a goat farm on one side of the pond, and I'm sure there's a fair amount of runoff from the property into the pond. Got me thinking that the algae could make good field dressing for my grove if I can come up with a good method to harvest it, then spread it with an old manure spreader. This assumes I can get permission from the person who owns the pond, of course. Anybody have suggestions as to harvesting and/or nutrient value of the stuff? walnut grive 004.jpg
     
  2. Del_

    Del_ I'm completely reformed.

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    You may want to be careful of water borne diseases.
     
  3. vanhalenps4

    vanhalenps4 ArboristSite Lurker

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    I don't think there will be any diseases that will affect your trees, as microbes that thrive in the water usually die when there is sufficient air and they will have to compete with the fungus and bacteria in the soil too.. However there may be some microbes that can make you sick from the goats and sitting idle. If you can oxygenate the pond for a while it might help kill any anaerobic bacteria, as they are usually the ones that cause problems. Good protection would be a must especially if you will be spreading it in a way where it can become airborne in a mist or dust... You may want to mix it with a carbon source and compost the mixture for a while to ensure any nasties are killed and also convert the nutes into a more useable form for the trees. Algae is used as a source for bio oil so there is a high oil content that may take a while to break down and may interfere with the surface ecosystem if applied right from the pond to the field. You could probably offer a "restoration service" to the owner removing the algae from the top and muck from the bottom which would be high in nutrients as well.. Then he would be able to use the pond for water
     
  4. SeMoTony

    SeMoTony Addicted to ArboristSite

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    There are over 3,000 varities of algae, from researching algae conversion into bio diesel. An answer here would not be what I would depend on. IMHO get permision now or seek forgiveness later & use water pump and screen arangement and try around a couple of the trees which are not going to be prime lumber anyway.
     
  5. ATH

    ATH Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Take samples of the algae and send them to a soil testing lab (call the lab first to see what they think...).

    I'd just use a trash pump skimming off of the top if you can get it across the road without the hose getting run over too often (is it a busy road?)
     
  6. Del_

    Del_ I'm completely reformed.

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  7. Jason Douglas

    Jason Douglas ArboristSite Operative

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    Can you compost and age the algae first?
     

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