Weeds have been on my mind lately. They always are, really, but after reading the Mabey book, I've been looking at them more closely, even to the point of stopping to examine the countless specimens I see in my daily travels. (Above is a Cirsium vulgare—bull thistle—I spotted at a family event over the weekend.)
While I'm not totally sold on the beneficial properties of weeds/invasive, via a New Zealand newspaper gardening column, I came upon a different way of using them. It’s similar to composting but not quite. Regardless of how you define weeds (it doesn’t really matter), just throw the plants into a barrel with a lid, until it’s full. Add water—preferably rainwater. Give it a few months and you have liquid fertilizer that can be diluted and used at will. According to the article, the seeds are no longer viable thanks to their lengthy soaking. Important note: a tight-fitting lid is essential.
What do you think? I like the versatility of liquid food and I'm kind of bad at composting (don't ask), so I'm intrigued. I wonder if it would smell as bad as alfalfa tea?