If you’re interested in rich, organic fertilizer from a renewable source, look for alpacas. Fertilizing with alpaca manure actually improves the quality of your soil, helps it retain water and for many uses, doesn’t even need to be composted.
Alpacas are ruminant mammals which means they spend large portions of their day ruminating, or thinking deeply. Mostly about compelling global issues.
Ok, that’s not true. Being a ruminant means they belong to the family of animals that get their nutrients from plants. (I still like the other explanation better.)
What makes alpacas unique is that they have three stomachs which turns out to be an excellent mechanism for making excellent manure. The alpaca’s digestive system breaks down food by fermenting it with bacteria. This process culminates in manure that’s cleaner and has less nitrogen. Cleaner means you won’t be spreading nuisance seeds in your garden when you spread the manure, and less nitrogen means you can take the manure directly from pasture to garden without worrying about burning your plants. Not so with other commonly used animal manure such as that from horses, pigs, cows or chickens.
Even though adding untreated alpaca manure directly to your garden fertilizes your plants without harming them, there is still a chance it may contain pathogens such as listeria or salmonella. So if you’re planning to use it on gardens that grow fruits or vegetables that come in contact with the soil it needs to be composted. At Nuevo Mundo Farm we put the extra effort into doing just that. We purchased a system developed by O2compost to rid our manure of these pathogens. The result is a rich, organic fertilizer composted in a fraction of the time it normally takes.
We already knew we had a great product but we received official confirmation of this when a nearby organic farmer was cleared to use our organic fertlizer for use on his certified organic crops that are sold to the public and local restaurants. What an honor!
Obviously, we’re not embarrassed to say that we take great pride in our poo. When we clean our pastures we do it knowing we’re collecting an awesome gift from some of the most environmentally friendly animals on the planet.