Korean Natural Farming – Oriental Herb Nutrient (OHN)

I think it will be important for Rooftop Ecologists to learn Korean Natural Farming techniques. We will need to ensure plants stay healthy and free of diseases and pests with easy to make home made inputs. The heavy dilution of these inputs in water would seem to me to make it ideal for maintaining the rooftop ecology in several key ways. Firstly, it can be made in the home with easily available (if not home produced ingredients) so lends itself to community production. Secondly, heavy dilution means that it can be carried from the producing household to wherever you wish to use it. Thirdly, it’s not toxic, so it’s not something you need a licence to produce.

This excerpt is taken from the Korean Natural Farming Handbook, which is as far as I know, pretty much unavailable in the West. This is a real pity. I’ve gorged myself on KNF produce and it was amazing. Getting a package from them was like opening a box of agricultural show prize winners. It was alsmost a shame to eat them, but one bite was enough to overcome any hesitation I might have had. Oh by the way I am not afilliated with Korean Natural Farming in any way. I am merely a fan.

So now, I stop jabbering and start typing out what it says in the book.

What is OHN?

OHN is made from popular oriental herbs such as Angelica Acutiloba,  Glycyrrhiza Uralensis (licorice), Cinnamomum Ioureirii (cinnamon). They are common at Chinese drug stores. The ingredients are not boiled as is common in Oriental medical practice, but fermented so as to maintain their lively power. OHN is a very important input in Natural Farming. In combination with other inputs (FPJ and BRV) it will wipe out powdery mildew and downy mildew when sprayed on leaves. It will also make seeds stronger. Spraying the plants every 7-10 days will make plants strong.

How to make OHN

1. Prepare Angelica Acutiloba, cinnamon bark, licorice, garlic and ginger to this ratio: 2:1:1:1:1. The garlic and the ginger are supplementary ingredients.

2. The three main ingredients are sold in a dry state. Put the three main ingredients in three separate jars and fill up to the 2/3 level with rice wine (or beer) so that they are completely soaked. The amount of rice should be such that if fully wets the ingredients but not too much. Let it absorb moisture for 1-2 days.

3. The garlic and ginger don’t require this wetting process. Just crush them and put them in separate jars. Then wait 12 hours.

4. Add an amount of brown sugar to the five jars equal to the weight of the ingredients, i.e  weight of brown sugar = plants and rice wine combined.

5. Cover the jars with porous paper and tie the paper down with a rubber band. Leave the jars to ferment for 4-5 days.

6. After fermentation pour distilled liquor into the remaining 1/3 of all five jars. Then stir with a stick.  The essence can be extracted five times.

7.  For long storage the lid must be sealed tight with no air passing through.

8. Stir each morning.

9. Combine the juice from the five jars according to this ratio 2:1:1:1:1.

How to use OHN

OHN makes crops healthy. It is used throughout the early vegetative stage (Ian: As I understand it this is when the plant is growing from a seedling towards maturity), the vegetative changover (Ian: plant puberty I think) and fruiting stages (Ian: No explanation required).  The basic dilution (Ian: which I would take to mean add a small amount to a large quantity of water)  is 500-1ooo.

When crops are weak, mix apply Fermented Plant Juice (FPJ) at dilution 500,  BRV (which I take to mean brown rice vinegar) at dilution 500 and OHN at 1000. When plants have soft rot or anthracnose add water soluble calcium (WCA 1000) to this solution.

Additional References

Details of Angelica Acutiloba


Details of Licorice


Details of this Cinnamon variety



1 Comment

  1. October 14, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    it is very interesting,very much interested in natural farming.

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