Monday, June 19, 2023

My Plant Food Essentials

my plant food essentials | on the creek blog //

The plant food essentials I use to grow vigorous plants.

I'm about to share all my secrets regarding my plant food routine!

Before I share my plant food essentials, there are probably a million different ways to grow plants & apply plant food. This is my little routine that works for me & my garden.

Along with using super great composted soil, here are the three plant foods I use:

- SUPERthrive: I use this in the seed starting stage to give my plants a jumpstart in the growing process & sporadically throughout the season to revive dying plants.

- Earthworm castings: After hearing about the benefits of using worm castings, I tried them in my garden this year. I applied the castings directly around the plant & worked it into the soil

- Blood Meal: You may already know about my obsession with blood meal, but I always use it in my garden. I'm pretty sure it healed my dead tomatoes that were all but dead from a late-season frost.

Now let's do a deep dive on the pros & cons of each of these plant foods:

SUPERthrive is a kelp-based vitamin for plants that offers numerous benefits. 

- It promotes healthy and vigorous growth, strengthening stems, thicker foliage, and abundant flowers. 

- It helps plants to recover from stress caused by transplanting, pests, or disease. 

- SUPERthrive also enhances the plant's ability to absorb nutrients from the soil, ensuring they receive all the necessary nutrients for optimal growth. 

- It can increase the plant's resistance to environmental stressors such as drought, heat, and cold. 

Some of the drawbacks of SUPERthrive include: 

- It is relatively expensive compared to other plant supplements.

- It may not be suitable for all plants or soil types and can even be harmful in some instances.

- Overuse of SUPERthrive can lead to fertilizer burn or other adverse effects on plant growth.

- Its robust and distinct smell may be unpleasant for some users.

- Some people have reported allergic reactions or other health issues after handling or using SUPERthrive.

plant food cheat sheet -- The plant food essentials I use to grow strong plants. | on the creek blog //

Worm castings are an excellent source of nutrients for many plants. 

Here are some benefits of using worm castings for your plants:

- They improve soil structure and aeration, making it easier for roots to grow and absorb water and nutrients

- They increase soil microbial activity, which can help reduce plant diseases and pests

- They contain high levels of microorganisms, enzymes, and beneficial bacteria that help break down organic matter and release plant nutrients.

- They improve plant growth, yield, overall plant health, and vigor.

- They are a natural and organic alternative to chemical fertilizers, making them safe for the environment and non-toxic for plants and animals.

Worm castings can benefit many plants, including vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, and fruits such as strawberries and melons. Furthermore, flowering plants like roses, marigolds, and petunias can also benefit from worm castings, as can herbs like basil, parsley, and thyme. Worm castings can benefit trees and shrubs such as citrus, apple, and avocado.

While worm castings are an excellent natural fertilizer and soil amendment, they have potential drawbacks. One limitation is that they can be expensive, especially if you have a large garden or farm. Additionally, if the worms used to create the castings were fed a diet of contaminated materials, the resulting castings could contain harmful pathogens or chemicals. Another consideration is that worm castings may not provide enough nutrients for specific plants or crops and may need to be supplemented with additional fertilizers. Finally, worm castings can attract pests or develop an unpleasant odor if not stored properly.

plant food cheat sheet -- The plant food essentials I use to grow strong plants. | on the creek blog //

Blood meal is a beneficial fertilizer for plants. Some of the benefits of using blood meal include:

- High nitrogen content: Blood meal is rich in nitrogen, essential for plant growth and development.

- Organic source: Blood meal is an organic fertilizer, which means it is derived from natural sources and is safe to use in gardens and farms.

- Improves soil fertility: Blood meal helps improve soil fertility by increasing the nutrient content of the soil.

- Promotes healthy plant growth: The high nitrogen content of blood meal promotes healthy plant growth, resulting in stronger stems, larger leaves, and more abundant blooms and fruits.

Repels pests: Blood meal has a strong odor that repels pests such as rabbits and deer, helping to protect plants from damage.

- Easy to apply: Blood meal is easy to use and can be mixed with water or other fertilizers to create a nutrient-rich plant solution.

While blood meal is a popular fertilizer for plants, its use has several potential drawbacks. Firstly, it can attract unwanted pests such as rodents and flies. Additionally, it can have a strong odor that may be unpleasant for some people. Blood meal can also be high in nitrogen, leading to over-fertilization and burning the plants if used in excess. Finally, blood meal is not a sustainable fertilizer option, as it is typically made from animal byproducts and may contribute to the environmental impact of the meat industry.

Please share your plant food essentials in the comments! I'd love to see what others are using in their gardens!

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