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Organic Nutrients, Comfrey

Your source of potash rich organic material and liquid feed.

Russian Comfrey , one of the most versatile plants in the kitchen and garden. Being a cell proliferant it can even heal broken bones.

Comfrey has many uses:

Compost activator
Liquid feed
Comfrey tea
Comfrey concentrate
Potting mix
Bee attractant O_o


Wild Comfrey. (Symphytum asperum


Russian Comfrey (Symphytum x uplandicum)
 is a hybrid and is sterile.

The comfrey worth lies in its composition. The roots bring up potassium, phosphate and other minerals by dying in the ground, and leaves are high in nitrogen. Percentages of dry matter, comfrey contains :

  •  5.8%   potassium
  •  3.5%   nitrogen
  •  0.5%   phosphate
This 2-3 times more potassium than in most farmyard manure, making it especially good for the production of flowers, fruits and seeds. High nitrogen means comfrey can be used for surface mulch or dug into soil with no stress about robbing soil nitrogen, as happens with green manures.

Cut the leaves up to 4 to 5 times a year. Through the summer, as soon as a good crop of leaves is produced is a good time to cut . Its best to leave the last cut no later than in early September to allow the plants time to build up before winter. 

Outdoor later in the season, use comfrey as a surface mulch, cut the leaves, fresh, and lay around the plant. As the comfrey leaves break down they release their nutrients and help to suppress weeds and prevent splash-borne diseases. At the end of the season, the remains can be turned in or removed, with other debris, to the compost heap. A layer of grass clippings above the comfrey in a mulch helps to save water and also speeding decay.

Compost Activator

Do not compost a large quantity of comfrey on its own, its too low in carbon and rots down to a liquid mess. But it makes a bomb activator. Comfrey in layers about 8cm thick in the heap to encourage decomposing organisms and help to heat it up. The heap will absorb the liquid.

Liquid Fertilizer

To use Liquid fertilizer comfrey where there is no loss of nutrients through leaching. Also, the nutrients are immediately available to plants. There are two methods for turning comfrey into liquid fertilizer :

1. Comfrey Tea

Put comfrey leaves and water into a container and allow the mixture to stand for 3 days to 5 weeks. The result is comfrey tea which you can use on plants. About 7kg comfrey to about 100 litres distilled water is the estimated right proportion.

This method is good if you only want a small amount of comfrey feed at one time. It is rather smelly and the liquid doen't store well.

2. Comfrey Concentrate

 Concentrate is made by packing comfrey leaves in a container, preferably with a weight pressing thethe leaves down. The comfrey decomposes to a thick brown liquid and is then diluted before watering plants. Recomended diluting at 15:1 and feeding twice a week, and pot plants and hanging baskets outdoors once a week. You may to dilute less and feed less often, or give more diluted feed with every watering. Test what works for you best.

Essentially any container can be used. You need a tap to draw off liquid if you are making tea, and a small hole that will drip permanently into a container for the concentrate liquid. A lid is useful to stop the smell.

Potting Mixtures

You can make a good all-purpose potting mixture just use some rotted leaf, possibly two years old, and mix chopped comfrey leaves. Outdoor in autumn, dig alternate layers of chopped comfrey leaves. Make layers about 10cm thick, if the leaf mould is very moist let the comfrey wilt first.

Leaving the heap sit between two or five months, checking now and then, that it is not too dry nor too wet. If squeezed hard a bit of moisture release should be seen. The mix is ready when the comfrey leaves have rotted completely. This makes a good medium, try and learn to boost it for demanding plants or dilute it for sensitive seeds.


"Comfrey tea has been implicated in liver disease (
Hepatotoxicity), although only two

such cases have been reported in the United States. In one instance, a 47-year-old

woman developed a liver ailment after consuming up to 10 cups of comfrey tea a day and taking comfrey pills

by the handful for more than a year in an attempt to cure her stomach pains, fatigue and allergies."


Have fun with it all, this was all collected online and based on some of my experiences.

World Seed Supply
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