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JJ the Gardener

Inputs - Section 5 - Water Soluble Calcium (WCA)

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Natural Farming Inputs

 

 

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Inputs - Section 5 - Water Soluble Calcium (WCA)

Calcium is as important to plants as it is to humans.  It is one of the most common substances in the world next to oxygen and silicon and the majority of calcium exists in the form of calcium carbonate (CaCO3).

In Natural Farming, calcium carbonate is extracted from egg shells, shells from clams/oysters or from coral sand in which calcium carbonate is the main component by using a vinegar.  Through this process, calcium carbonate is changed to water-soluble calcium, which can be quickly absorbed by the crop.

  • It prevents overgrowth of crops, hardens the fruit, prolongs storage period, promotes absorption of phosphoric acid and helps crops to accumulate nutrients. 
  • Calcium carries and accumulates nutrients carbohydrate, which is temporarily stored in branches (pith) and in leaves till the final storage.

Several soil characteristics affect the availability of calcium to plants:

  • soils with higher pH have higher levels of available calcium than acidic (lower-pH) soils; soils with a higher capacity to absorb or hold calcium will have more available calcium;
    • the presence of excessive amounts of sodium, potassium, or magnesium in the soil interferes with calcium availability.
  • Calcium can also react with other soil nutrients, such as phosphorus, to form insoluble compounds that cannot be used by plants.
  • Calcium is commonly applied as a soil amendment in the form of ground limestone (calcium carbonate) or gypsum (calcium sulfate).

Water-soluble calcium (WCA) is an alternative to these commercial sources of calcium. 

  • Water-soluble calcium is a source of available calcium that can be made from commonly used household items, eggshells and from the shells of clams/oysters and vinegar.

When applied as a foliar spray, WCA provides available calcium to plants for normal cell processes, root growth, and fruiting

  • In Natural Farming, WCA is applied as a foliar spray during the reproductive stage of a plant’s growth cycle when setting fruit and vegetables are most vulnerable to blossom-end rot.
  • Calcium in water soluble form is efficient and effective
  • WCA is also effective when crops are overgrown,
  • Plant leaves have bad color or no luster,
  • Floral differentiation is weak,
  • Flower blossoms just fall,
  • Fruits do not ripen,
  • Fruits are not sweet and crops are nitrogen-excessive.
  • However, WS-Ca should not be given when vigorous vegetative growth is needed.

 

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Master Cho Recipe

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PDF - WCA

 

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WCA video by Onedrive

 

WCA with eggshells by Chris Trump

Chris Trump Chris Trump - WCA with eggshells - https://www.patreon.com/christrump

 

Instructions for WCA

Collect eggshells (oyster or clam shells may also be used);

  1. Remove the tough internal membrane from the inside of the shells.
  2. Break the shells into small pieces (1/4”).
  3. Lightly roast or grill the shells in a frying pan or foil container over low heat for approximately 45 minutes to remove any organic substances that will rot and contaminate the WCA.
    1. You can fan over top the eggshells while cooking to remove the unwanted egg lining.
      1. the wind from fanning will blow them away.
  4. Shells should be dry and lightly burnt to a light tan color but not charred.
  5. Slowly add roasted eggshells to a glass jar filled 2/3 full with brown rice vinegar, a store bought fermented vinegar will work just as well at a 1:10 ratio by weight.
    1. Vinegar should not be distilled.
    2. Add eggshells slowly or the solution can over foam and create a mess.
  6. The eggshell fragments will float up and down within the vinegar, emitting carbon dioxide bubbles, while the calcium is being dissolved into the solution.
  7. Cover the mouth of the jar with breathable cloth, such as muslin, or paper (not plastic) and secure with rubber bands or ties to keep out pests.
  8. Place the jar in a cool, dark location for 7 to 10 days.
    1. Letting it sit longer than needed will not hurt the WCA.
  9. After this time, check if bubbles are present in the solution.
    1. If bubbles are not present, the WCA is “saturated” – proceed to step 10.
    2. If bubbles are present, add more roasted eggshells and let stand for 1 to 2 more days.
    3. Repeat until the solution stops producing bubbles.
  10. Strain the vinegar-and-eggshell solution through a colander into a clean glass jar to remove eggshells.
  11. Label the WCA solution and store at room temperature out of direct sunlight.
  12. compost the remaining eggshells.

 

Preparation of 1:1,000 WCA Solution

                                                                                                   Amount of wca  _____________________________________________________________                         

                                  Water Volume                                        Kitchen utensil measurements             Fluid ounces (fl oz)               Milliliters (ml)               

                                   ¼ gallon                                                   1 /3 teaspoon (tsp)                                  0.06                                            2

                                    1 gallon                                                          ¾ tsp                                                    0.13                                            4 

                                    5 gallons                                                  1¼ tablespoons (Tbsp)                           0.64                                           19  

                                   10 gallons                                                 2½ Tbsp                                                     1.28                                           38

                                   25 gallons                                                 little less than ½ cup                                  3.2                                           95

                                    50 gallons                                                little more than ¾ cup                                6.4                                           189

 

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WCA with Coral Sand

  • Using coral sand is the easiest WCA method as their is no cooking off the shells needed.

 

Chris Trump teaches WCA with coral sand.

Chris Trump Chris Trump - How to WCA with Chris Trump - https://www.patreon.com/christrump

 

WCA Coral Sand instructions

(Oyster and clam shells can be used too)

  1. Add coral sand to jar.
    1. one part coral sand to 10 parts vinegar.
  2. Add vinegar slowly to the jar to prevent overflowing of bubbling.
    1. Use a fermented vinegar and not a distilled vinegar.
  3. Cover the mouth of the jar with breathable cloth, such as muslin, or paper (not plastic) and secure with rubber bands or ties to keep out pests.
    1. Do not have air tight or it will explode from pressure build up.
  4. Place the jar in a cool, dark location for 7 to 10 days.
    1. Letting it sit longer than needed will not hurt the WCA.
  5. After this time, check if bubbles are present in the solution.
    1. If bubbles are not present, the WCA is “saturated” – proceed to step 6.
    2. If bubbles are present, add more coral sand and let stand for 1 to 2 more days.
    3. Repeat until the solution stops producing bubbles.
  6. Strain the vinegar-and-coral sand solution through a colander into a clean glass jar to remove coral sand.
  7. Label the WCA solution and store at room temperature out of direct sunlight.
  8. compost the remaining coral sand.
  9. Use same as WCA made with eggshells.

 

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Credits

 

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For Just You!

 

 

Natural Farming Inputs

 

 

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~Cultural Healing and Life

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