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Serendipity Farm & Sanctuary - Alpacas & Llamas

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Alpaca / Llama Beans

Alpaca Beans – Llama Beans

“Alpaca Beans” or “Llama Beans” is what the droppings / poop / manure produced by these animals is generally called. This is probably because these droppings do look like brown beans.

Anyone who has raised alpacas or llamas has quickly noticed that everywhere these animals poop the grass is always greener and it generally does not contain any weeds. Alpacas and llamas have a digestive process based on three stomach chambers that is so thorough that any other organic matter such as weeds are non-existent in their fertilizer and the resulting completely composted beans are rich in Nitrogen, Potassium and Phosphorous – the three main ingredients required for optimum health in all plants. Alpaca or Llama Beans are the ultimate all natural 100 % organic fertilizer. Using these beans with no additives and no chemicals have no negative effects on our environment and create no pollution.

Alpaca or Llama Beans are the environmentally friendly way to enhance your soil and produce superior flowers and gardens. Most commercial fertilizers list the three main ingredients; Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium. Alpaca Beans contain all three of these ingredients, but in much smaller amounts. That's important to gardeners because when the nitrogen content is too high there is a chance of "burning" your plants. As a bonus, Alpaca or Llama Beans also contain nutrients such as calcium, magnesium and sulfur that help supplement a plant's feeding needs. An adult Alpaca can produce up to 28 pounds of Beans a week, and an adult Llama more than twice that, so it does not take long for it to build up.

Here at Serendipity Farm we compost our Alpaca and Llama Beans and add to our gardens in the early spring. You can apply composted Beans up to two months before harvest with no risk of introducing any unwanted organisms to your gardens. To reduce the risk of passing unwanted organisms from livestock to humans via the food we harvest from our gardens, we only add fresh (non-composted) beans to our gardens in the late fall after the growing season or in the early winter. It is important to know that there are plenty of germs in all livestock manures and alpaca and llama beans are no exception. However, it is also important to point out that alpacas and llamas are not known to carry E. coli 157.

There are multiple uses for alpaca and llama beans including the following:

  • Make a “bean tea” fertilizer by placing a cup of fresh beans in a gallon of water in a clean bucket. Let the tea sit and “brew” overnight. Use the tea to water house plants. Keep the bean in the bucket as they can be reused many times before they eventually dissolve and need to be replaced with more fresh beans.

  • Use Alpaca beans safely on your houseplants, just spoon a little into the soil, and the fertilizer will gradually release as you water.  It is odorless and harmless to pets.

  • Sprinkle some Alpaca beans around your plants or trees, mix with a little dirt and every time you water your plants you are fertilizing them at the same time.

  • For seedlings, use a variation of the alpaca / llama tea above:  Mix 1/3 cup alpaca pellets with 2/3 cup of water and let it sit from 5-12 hours.  Within 24 hours of the first application, you will begin to see the difference in your seedling.  Alpaca tea appears to also be an effective deer repellent – deer do not like the smell.

  • When transplanting house plants, mix it in with your potting soil.

  • Alpaca beans are great for delicate plants and terrific for soil health.  Adding it to your garden or lawn can help reduce disease and pest problems.

  • A large bucket or wheelbarrow full of beans will help trees and shrubs grow very healthy and strong.

Thursday, February 20, 2014