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 Post subject: Molasses/ sugar beet
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 8:08 am 
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Can I assume that molasses is made from sugar beet, sugar cane or corn. If made from sugar beet, is it possible to grow your beets and mulch them up and use them as "molasses" without going through the extraction process.
Curious.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 11:29 am 
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How to make molasses:

http://www.ced.appstate.edu/projects/pa ... esmake.htm


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 3:28 pm 
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That was great just to read it. But what about grinding up the beets. As far as I know when it comes to sugar, beet is just below cane as sugar content grow. any one can grow beet.
Or is it the wrong type of sugar.
But that site was well worth the read, Thanks.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 4:48 pm 
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Found this on the following website.
http://www.enviromateinc.com/factsmolass.asp


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2005 5:17 am 
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I used to live in an area that grew lots of sugar beets for a Holley Sugar plant. After harvesting the beets, the tops were left in the field and cattle were let in to eat the tops.

I'm sorry, but I really have no idea if ground up sugar beets would perform the same as molasses, but, it would probably make a great compost pile addition :)


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2005 3:18 pm 
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Yeah, where I grew up sugar beet was hugh. I think I give it a try, you just never know. May be a waste of time, but what the heck.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 9:15 pm 
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Personally I've found molasses to be a 100% waste of time/money, but I'm apparently in the minority.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2005 10:34 am 
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There is nothing wrong with being different, at least you have the right to do your own thing. What works for you .


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 Post subject: molasses
PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 7:32 am 
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Dave: I don't want to pick on you but molasses is
great. If you habe a farm and money is short the
best thing is molasses. It feeds the bacteria that
are present, it is loaded with trace minerals to
boost the plants. You can buy it for $1.00/gal and
put up to 3 gal /acre. Stay away from dry molasses -
it isn't worth a flip - a few quarts of molasses/50lb
bag.
You can add a lot to the molasses to make it better
- ocean water, humates, compost tea, potassium
nitrate< and a few other things. Our best hay this
year has been 100% compost tea (about 200 gal)
(molasses was put in compost tank) aerated + 2 gal
sea water + 2 gal liquid humates and about 10 lb
of potassium nitrate. This was greener before the
rains and very productive after the rains.
Robert D Bard


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2005 10:18 pm 
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Hey Robert, you're not picking on me. My results with molasses on my residential lot, under a canopy of oak trees, in limestone soil, in San Antonio, speaks for itself. I got zip. But I've seen pictures of a cotton farmer who sprays 1 gallon per acre of molasses and has crops without irrigation. His results speak for themselves, too. I think farmers might get a bigger boost from it. My grass provides a 100% canopy and full shade. Cotton provides about 15% to 50% canopy (depending on time of growing seaseon) with lots of drying air movement underneath that canopy. Seems to me the situations are completely different. And Kathe Kitchens gets great results from molasses on her turf. It certainly is inexpensive enough for anyone to try.

To the point of the question I think using ground pulp from any plant would give a positive effect.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2005 7:08 am 
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roc3491 wrote:
That was great just to read it. But what about grinding up the beets. As far as I know when it comes to sugar, beet is just below cane as sugar content grow. any one can grow beet.
Or is it the wrong type of sugar.
But that site was well worth the read, Thanks.


On a weight/weight basis, raw sugar beets contain ~13-18% total sugar on a dry basis, mostly as sucrose. Even last boil blackstrap molasses is considerably more concentrated in total sugars, due to the extraction/reduction process. (The site you mention appears to me to illustrate a first extraction, which usually isn't the same as blackstrap). Once you know how many pounds of sugar you want, it isn't hard to figure how many pounds of sugar beets you'd need to distribute. I suppose how finely you'd need to grind the beet mass will depend on how quickly you want the sugars and other nutrients to be bio-available. The finer the grind, the better the separation from the fiber and the faster the availability, up to a point. Juice from the grinding process likely will be the most concentrated in sugars, so you'd want to capture and use that. Even the spent beet pulp from the molasses extraction process is a pretty fair energy source, so ground whole beets should be even better. I'm not aware of any allelopathic effect from raw beet tissue, but it might be something to consider. For the most part, molasses and raw beets contain different types of sugar. Beets have a higher sucrose content, and molasses has a higher glucose/fructose mix, but I don't think it would matter much to the lawn and garden. Bear in mind that, as biennials, sugar beets typically don't reach maximum sugar storage until their second growing season. As an aside, if you want to experiment with home made sugar for the garden, you could take a peek at enzyme (amylase) conversion of starch sources.

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