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DIY - Gardening Do It Yourself Do you know a good gardening DIY plan? Are you in need for some good DIY ideas? This is the forum to discuss all Do It Yourself plans and questions. For example, learn about: The pipe work to support banana bunches, making pots out of newspaper, using plastic cups as pots, tips for building coverings for plants during winter, etc. If you know a good DIY plan, please share it here, and if you need one, please ask away!


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Old 07-17-2023, 02:10 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightbulb JADAM ultra low-cost organic agriculture

JADAM is a natural/organic farming method originating in Korea and based on the traditional agricultural knowledge systems of the region. JADAM is an abbreviation of the Korean phrase Jayonul Damun Saramdul, which means "people who like nature." This system offers a way for us to cheaply and easily make DIY organic fertilizers, microbe inoculants, and pesticides using naturally occurring and/or commonly available materials - many of which would normally be considered waste or of low value. JADAM is a great system for saving money on inputs, reducing reliance on commercial farming/gardening products, and simplifying many aspects of organic growing. I've been using the JADAM microbe solution (JMS) and JADAM liquid fertilizer (JLF) for a while now, and I wanted to share some info about the system and some of my experiences with it. Hopefully you find this useful!

Information about JADAM is freely available online at the organization's website and their youtube channel. The system itself is open source, and the main organization that researches and develops it is a nonprofit that aims to make the technology accessible and available to everyone who may benefit from it. Although they sell a series of books that delves deeply into the system, as well as the philosophy and science behind it, I was able to find all of the information I needed to practice JADAM for free.

JADAM Microorganism Solution (JMS):

The foundation of JADAM - and all of natural farming with that matter - is working directly with indigenous microorganisms (IMOs) - i.e. the microscopic soil flora and fauna that are local to you and adapted to the temperatures, moisture regimes, and soil type of your exact location. JMS provides us with a method for easily collecting and culturing these IMOs in a non-aerated water based solution. It works like an ultra-powerful compost tea, and utilizes locally produced leaf mold (compost made only from brown leaves that fell in your area) as a source of IMOs. The microbes are cultured by feeding them potato starch as a source of carbohydrates (instead of brown sugar or molasses) and sea salt as a source of trace elements. The recipe is as follows:

Quote:
1. Collect a high quality sample of leaf mold to use as an inoculum (see below). You can also use black topsoil from a healthy woodland or forest area within a few miles of you, but it is not a great idea to continually remove soil from an ecosystem. I collected a couple small samples from a local woodland and introduced them into my leaf mold bin when I started it, and now I just use my own leaf mold compost. I have also found that using fully rotted wood chips works very well.



2. Prepare a solution of 1 tbsp sea salt per 5 gal of dechlorinated water or rainwater in a food-grade container.
3. Place 2-4 cooked organic potatoes and an equal weight of the sample in separate paint strainers (about 1 lb of potatoes and one large handful of your sample per 5 gal).
4. Massage leaf mold and potatoes in paint strainers or cheesecloth until they melt into water.
5. Leave paint strainers suspended in center, and allow the solution to incubate outdoors. Ideally, you should incubate it at ambient temperatures. If it is close to or below freezing outside, you can heat the solution to 68 F with an aquarium heater as it incubates.
6. Microbial metabolism within the solution will cause a ring or dome of bubbles to form. Wait 36-72 hrs until the bubbles peak. The incubation time is positively correlated with the temperature of the solution. See pic below for a mature JMS that is ready to use.
7. Apply as a soil drench at a dilution rate of 1:10.



*The solution must be used within 12 hours after it is ready, otherwise it will spoil and become useful only as a weak organic fertilizer.
If you prefer visual instructions, here is a video I made explaining the recipe.

I have used this preparation with fantastic results - it encourages root growth, improves plant health, suppresses pathogens, stimulates soil aggregation (i.e., improves drainage and structure), and inoculates the soil with a diversity of beneficial microorganisms - many of which will not grow in an aerated compost tea preparation. It is also fantastic for improving poor soil, and it works very well when used in combination with an organic amendment and/or a cover crop. The official recommendation is to apply it four times before planting, use it when you are fertilizing, and also to treat your seeds/seedlings with it. I usually apply it 1-2 times at planting time and every now and again, and I still have found it to be hugely beneficial. JMS can also be used as a foliar spray to improve plant health and treat diseases of the leaves when combined with a natural wetting agent.

JADAM Liquid Fertilizer (JLF):

JLF is a liquid fertilizer product made via the anaerobic fermentation of basically any nutrient-rich organic material you want. You can use weeds, rotting produce, "uncompostable" food waste (i.e. meat, dairy, junk food), fish carcasses, urine, feces, etc. The recipe is as follows:

Quote:
1. Collect your materials - i.e. fresh green plant material, any food scraps, urine, and feces.
2. Break down/chop up the materials until they can fit into your container of choice - anything food grade will work. Make sure you pack them down well.
3. Add until the container is half full for very nutrient rich materials such as fish carcasses, and completely full for weeds or other plant material.
4. Layer in leaf mold compost as you go.
5. Top up with dechlorinated water or rainwater and cover with a lid.
6. Allow to brew for at least 2 weeks to 6 months depending on materials used.
7. It will smell unpleasant and mold will grow in it - this is normal. As long as it doesn't smell like something toxic such as hydrogen sulfide or ammonia, you are good to use it. If it begins to smell off, you can stir it, toss in more leaf mold, and check to see if the smell has dissipated after a week or so.



8. Apply as a soil drench 1:30-300.
9. Replenish the buckets with additional material and water. Add more leaf mold periodically. It will get better with age.



*Refer to the JADAM Organic Farming book for specific recipes and guidelines on fermentation times, application rates, nutrient analyses, etc.
If you prefer visual instructions, here is a video of me making and using it.

How long it takes to yield a usable product depends on the starter materials and ambient temperatures. Weeds will be ready in about 2 weeks, whereas feces should be fermented for at least 6 months, and ideally a year or more. JLF is full of beneficial microorganisms that support nutrient cycling and plant growth. It's recommended to apply JMS and JLF together, but I have still gotten great results from applying JLF by itself.

For me, JLF has been the ultimate solution for making use of weeds - whenever I weed my garden, I just add them to my JLF buckets. I no longer view Bermuda grass and other weeds as problems, I now view them as a valuable resource for fertilizing my crops. Since you are straining off the end product, there is no risk of spreading the seeds or any bits that can root. It's also a great way to "bank" your nutrients if you grow green manures like comfrey.

The main drawback of JLF is that it stinks! The smells come in a variety of flavors depending on what materials you used to make it. If you are used to working with fish emulsion or manure, it's probably nothing you can't handle though. Also, the smell dissipates within 24 hours of applying it. It's not necessary to seal your JLF containers, but it helps a lot with reducing odors. I keep a few buckets stored on the side of my house, and while the smell is noticeable when I am within a couple yards of the buckets, the odor is not too bothersome and it does not get inside the house. It's better to keep it stored away from the house and any high traffic areas, because the buckets can attract flies.

Additionally, it's only as potent as what it was made from. Weed-JLF has an NPK in the tenths and lower, and mainly supplies nitrogen. In practice, this means that you have to apply it at a high rate, and make enough of it to meet the needs of your crops. The strength of something like fish-JLF, however, is on par with commercial organic fertilizer products.

JADAM Natural Pesticide (JNP):

There are a variety of recipes for JNP, but they mainly consist of water, JADAM wetting agent (JWA - essentially homemade castile soap), JADAM herbal solution (steep a herb with insecticidal or repellent properties in boiling water for 3-6 hours), and sometimes other additives such as sodium hydroxide and the JADAM liquid sulfur (JS) preparation. The idea is to utilize common plants that are already growing in your garden or in the wild in your immediate area. Some of the commonly used plants include sunchokes, lavender, garlic, etc.

I haven't made or used any of the pesticides - most of the pest control in my garden is performed by carnivorous insects that I attract using native plants. However, I think gentle botanical formulations are better than concentrated, refined products - especially those like garlic-JNP that have a repelling effect instead of killing pests outright, as this minimizes damage to nontarget organisms that have important roles to play in the ecosystem.

There is a long list of JNP recipes for different pests and diseases in the book JADAM published on the subject.

Other JADAM Inputs and Tools:

There are a number of other resources provided by the JADAM system, including recipes for other products such as liquid sulfur fungicide and a natural wetting agent, a method for producing mineral water for irrigation, plans for a water softener, and a composting toilet design.

-

JADAM has integrated well into the existing body of organic and regenerative gardening practices I use, and has helped me a lot with increasing soil health and crop yields. Does anyone else here work with the JADAM preparations? What has your experience been?
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Old 07-19-2023, 09:05 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: JADAM ultra low-cost organic agriculture

Thank you for the detailed write up - very informative.
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Old 07-27-2023, 11:58 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: JADAM ultra low-cost organic agriculture

Just curiously, do you know if there is a significant difference between dried and fresh plant material when making one of these concoctions?
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Old 07-27-2023, 11:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: JADAM ultra low-cost organic agriculture

Quote:
Originally Posted by sirdoofus View Post
Just curiously, do you know if there is a significant difference between dried and fresh plant material when making one of these concoctions?
I would say that if the dried material has been left out to oxidize in the sun, it likely has much lower nitrogen content. Otherwise, I can't imagine how it would be that different.
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Old 07-31-2023, 07:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: JADAM ultra low-cost organic agriculture

In addition to the links in this thread the platform Reddit has some great takeaways of folks using various forms of JADAM .

Reddit/jadam/compost teas.
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