Duck water as fertilizer

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by 2MooreChicks, Mar 7, 2017.

  1. 2MooreChicks

    2MooreChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I found an old thread with a good bit of helpful info about using dirty duck pond water to irrigate or fertilize gardens, but I thought it might be better to start a new thread since that one has been neglected for several years. I found a great looking setup on Pinterest that drained pond water downhill to a tap, but I'm concerned about whether this would burn my plants. I also want to eat the things I grow in my garden, so Im hoping to use an irrigation system to keep the water from coming into contact with the fruits & veggies. I'd love to hear from anyone who does this (or has done it in the past) before I set up a labor-intensive and potentially expensive pond.
     
  2. Krazyquilts

    Krazyquilts Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

    I've heard that because duck poop is so much more liquid-y aka higher water content than chicken poop that it won't burn plants the way fresh chicken waste can.

    Carol Deppe's amazing book The Resilient Gardener she uses ducks as pest control in her garden and mentions this:

    I figure if you wouldn't want to eat it raw after ducks walked on it, then probably don't use duck water on it. So skip watering the bush beans with it, but it's probably okay to water the tomato roots?

    Also, several years ago, my wonderful husband set up automatic drip irrigation for me in our raised garden beds. It's just using city water, but maybe after we have our farm we can do something else. With drip irrigation, only the base and roots of the plants get wet, so I've thought someday adapting it to use the nutrient-rich duck water. I do see a couple issues with this, though. The first issue is that my ducks make the water very, very muddy. Largely with actual mud but also with their constant pooping. So I'd wonder how well that would work going through the slender irrigation hoses - maybe make sure to get larger ones that won't clog?

    The other potential problem I see is that I'm not quite sure how I feel about "duck poop water"-marinated carrots. :tongue Probably fine, and I suppose that could be avoided by growing greens and root vegetables etc in a different area, but I practice chemical-free companion planting and also not growing all of any one thing together. Meaning in one 4x4' bed divided into sixteen squares, I'll plant 10-14 different kinds of fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers. That makes it a bit more complicated.

    Maybe you could start on a smaller scale and experiment with irrigating from a large barrel instead of a pond at first? I've subscribed to this thread and I hope others will chime in and share their thoughts and experiences too.
     
  3. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's great to water everything with, but water the base of your plant, not the plant itself.
     
  4. 2MooreChicks

    2MooreChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the advice. I'm wary of using poopy water or fresh manure on low growing produce like strawberries and root vegetables, so those beds get composted(aged for at least 6 months) chicken manure mixed into the soil before planting then nice clean water throughout the growing season. I'm thinking of using my "duck water" to irrigate my blueberries and tomatoes using soaker hoses so the water won't come into contact with any of the fruit. I'm just concerned the nitrogen levels will be too high and fry all my blueberry bushes.

    I like the idea of testing this method before putting in my pond. I was going to build the pond before getting the ducks-not like when I got chicks and had no coop so they roosted in my spare bathtub every night for a year-but I might get one of those tubs from TSC with a built in valve and see how it goes. That means I won't have to wait til next spring: I could get ducks NOW!!!
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2017
  5. Krazyquilts

    Krazyquilts Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

    Sorry, tried to read your last post but I could see was:


    Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes! Get ducks now! Everyone should have ducks!!!!!!!!
     
  6. 2MooreChicks

    2MooreChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    After I typed that "get ducks NOW" post I went to tractor supply, for about the 20th time this week, and they had 6 different breeds of chickens but the duck tub was *gasp* empty. I want my ducks[​IMG]
     
  7. Louise Waffles

    Louise Waffles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When I need to give houseplants a serious watering, I use duck water. The plants are all gauled outside and set on what used to be grass (I have chickens), and I just pour the water right into the pot. It seems to help them grow better, and has never killed any of my plants or even made them a little sad. I would feel a little weird using it on things like carrots or potatoes, but watering the roots of plants would be good.
    I had some tomatoes in a big pot with a bucket full of holes set in the dirt in the middle of the pot. I would pour duck pool water into the holey bucket and let it just soak into the soil of the tomato pot. It seemed to do well that way.
    I have some ducks, but I want more. Is there duck math? Like, I have 11 ducks, but odd numbers don't count. So I have 10. Three of those are males that don't lay eggs, so now I'm down to 7. Odd number, so I have 6 ducks. And six is only enough if it's cupcakes or glasses of wine, right? I should have more ducks than that!
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Krazyquilts

    Krazyquilts Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

    You can always have some shipped to you! :D
     
  9. Krazyquilts

    Krazyquilts Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member


    Cute! I like the way you think!
    :lau
     
  10. 2MooreChicks

    2MooreChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm borrowing this explanation of duck math for the next time my husband says that chicken math just means I can't do proper math. There is a system and this is it!!
     

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