I was just curious how often you guys fertilize your garden? I purchased
some Fertilome blooming and rooting water soluble fertilizer the other day
and the instructions say to use it every 7-14 days. Is this a good
regimen for plants like peppers, pole beans, tomatoes, onions, red cabbage
ect? The label says its a 9-58-8 fertilizer.
I did till in a cubic yard of mushroom compost and some slow release
fertilizer in early spring. Not sure if that makes a difference but
thought I would throw it out there.
So is a 7-14 day fertilizing schedule ok or overkill?
once every three or four years for amending
with worms/worm poo/worm pee (then i rotate plant
). top dressing with green manure when ever i get
around to it or it seems to be needed - usually
that means it doesn't happen because the plants
seem to be doing ok without it.
the rest of the time i'm adding organic matter to
the soil by burying garden debris/weeds/leaves/pieces
of bark/partially decayed wood chips/etc. when i have
access to those materials. all organic materials are
a weak fertilizer and act as slow release as the soil
community (bacteria, fungi, worms, etc) breaks them
i haven't used chemical fertilizers in the veggie
gardens for 10yrs or more. the soil quality keeps
improving. when i started the soil was pale, and
since we have mostly clay and a little sand it tends
to be like a brick when not amended with other things.
so i add more sand and any organic materials when i
can get them for free or nearly free. we have a
large enough area of other perennial gardens that i
can use the decayed wood chips/humus that collects
around plants over the years and wood ashes provide
some lighter soil and trace nutrients along with some
charcoal pieces that will gradually get broken down as
i plant/weed/harvest. anyways, the gardens i've kept
improving the soils and are notably many shades darker
and that seems to be working too as there is more
signs of worms and other creatures.
also i rarely dig an entire garden each season,
instead i only use 5-10% for burying garden debris
and the rest is no till as much as possible. i wish
i could also plant cover crops, but the manager doesn't
let me do that so there are more weeds than i'd like.
a good cover crop through winter and into early spring
would keep a lot of weeds down.
Songbird could better say on this, but a certified
organic fertilizer shouldn't (watch the weasel word)
burn your vegi's is you use too much.
Again Songbird will know better, but there comes a time
when you want to stop fertilizing as it will give
growth but no fruit.
I have a black thumb, so double check everything
I tell you.
i think most of them are very expensive
for what you actually are getting in terms
of minerals/nutrients. if you can set aside
some space to grow alfalfa that can provide a
lot of N in a form that the worms will enjoy.
the problem i have with many "bagged"
materials is that they've not been treated
well so that by the time i get them they
might as well be considered sterile or
greatly depleted. in comparison, if you'd
observe what i can make in a worm bucket
that is hopping with life for pretty close
there's a lot to be said for scrounging
and growing what you can and only using the
trace nutrients/minerals called for (by
observation or soil test). it's much cheaper
and more fun to me...
different plants (even within the same family)
may react differently. some things you can learn
from reading, but by doing i think it drives the
lessons home a bit more firmly.
you've grown more zuchinis than i have and there
are plenty of other things i haven't grown here
well at all, but i much prefer gardening to tv so
i just keep at it. :)