is there any reason I shouldn't try rotting down noxious weeds in water-filled barrels to create liquid manure? I'm thinking of Kikuyu, wandering Jew and wandering dock at home, and gorse and blackberry on our land.
I'd want to give it at least 4-5 months. Seems like a way of extracting nutrients from plants which I wouldn't trust in compost.

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Hi Richard I have been making liquid manure out of couch grass for a few years now (reccomended by a friend with a hort degree). In the last year or so I have been adding convolvulus as well . I only use the liquid (strain it off) and leave any solids in the bucket and keep adding water and more grass etc.
I am sure you could do this with the weeds you mentioned and I am going to start includuing old mans beard in my mix.
Thanks Isabell,
I have my first barrel and taps should arrive tomorrow. I figure on putting the drain tap about 20-30cm above the bottom to be clear of sediment.

A tip for anyone not in Taranaki (I still need to locate and buy a couple more barrels :-) : Wide-mouth barrels with screw-on lids are used to supply sausage casings. So befriend your butcher.

I'm guessing that adding a few handfuls of healthy soil to the mix will act as a microbial "starter"
Fantastic. I want a solution to manage some oxalis.
This is a great way to get rid of those nasty weeds and why not get some benefit from it for your plants. That is what we did with weeds at my Hort course. Go for it!
I am pleased also that you have asked this question Richard as I have been wondering about what to do with all of my noxious weeds too.  Instead of just putting them in a pile out of sight I think I will get another drum of water going. Cheers.

I can offer one bit of advice in hindsight:

If you are fitting a tap to a drum, test it for leaks under a full head of pressure before putting any weeds in!

So, 6 months on, how is this p

Inconclusive so far:

Barrel 1 (at home) was filled, but the drain tap leaked and I haven't yet faced the unpleasant task of emptying it out. There's still some liquid  in it (definitely anaerobic) - it must have self-sealed  after the pressure got to a manageable level.

Barrel 2 (pressure tested and up on our land) isn't full yet (it takes quite a lot of baby gorse pulling to fill one!)

Barrel 3 has 200 litres of lovely liquid seaweed fertilizer.

I'll start barrel 4 as part of the spring clean-up at home.


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