When it comes to providing a little oomph to your plants this year, it’s time to think about fertilizing naturally!
Using organic solutions to boost plants can actually help build soil quality over time. Organic fertilizers, unlike man-made versions, replenish soil naturally as they break down. They add valuable minerals and nutrients back into the soil, all while improving soil structure.
That in turn creates a more productive garden every year you plant!
But perhaps best of all, going organic can save big money on your garden budget! Many of the organic fertilizing solutions can be made inexpensively in your own back yard. Others can even be found for free! Who knew fertilizing naturally could be such a win-win?!
One final note on using any fertilizers, whether organic or not. Remember that too much of a good thing can be a problem for anything, including plants. Over-fertilizing can lead to plants that spend too much of their energy developing their foliage, and not enough on producing vegetables or flowers.
With that said, here are 7 great solutions to providing your plants with an all-natural boost this year.
Fertilizing Naturally – 7 Great Methods To Boost Your Plants
Compost – The grand-daddy of all natural fertilizers, nothing can compare to using compost throughout the garden. Working compost into planting holes is one of the best solutions to providing plants with all of the nutrients they need to survive and thrive.
Compost can also be used as an excellent power mulch around plants. Not only does it help keep weeds down and protect the soil, it also leaches nutrients into the soil over time.
Compost Tea – One of the best “Instant-Fertilizers” around, compost tea is made by steeping water in fresh or aged compost. The resulting compost tea can be used when watering, or applied to the foliage of plants. The nutrients are then absorbed through the roots and foliage – providing high powered energy to plants. See : How To Make Compost Tea
Aged Manure – If you have chickens or livestock, you probably already know the power of manure for the garden. Aged manure is manure that has been left to “dry-out” over time. By aging, the manure is still a potent fertilizer for plants, but not too strong to burn the foliage or roots. A pile of chicken, rabbit, cow or horse manure should be aged a minimum of 3 to 6 months before working into the soil, or using as a side dressing for plants.
Manure Tea – Manure tea is another excellent alternative for those that have access to droppings from chickens, rabbits, cattle or horse. Manure tea is made with the same method as compost tea – by steeping manure in water.
Fertilizing Naturally – Grass, Coffee and Worms!
Fresh Grass Clippings – Fresh, bright green grass clippings are full of nitrogen and other nutrients. By using clippings as a mulch around vegetable plants, the nutrients will leach to the soil below. This provides a quick, all-natural boost to plants. Grass clipping mulch also serves as an excellent weed suppressor.
Coffee Grounds – Spent coffee grounds are a wonderful source of nitrogen for plants. Sprinkle a few teaspoons of spent grounds at the base of plants. The grounds then act as a slow release fertilizer as they decay. Coffee grounds are an great choice to add to planting holes as well when transplanting flowers and vegetable starts in the spring.
Some beleive that coffee grounds are too acidic for plants, but in reality, the PH of coffee grounds are very close to neutral.
One of the absolute most amazing natural fertilizers around – worm castings simply work like magic to provide nutrients to flowers, vegetables, containers and hanging baskets.
Worm castings are the manure of worms. When worms chew through soil, they digest and process bits of organic material. The resulting “material” that comes out the other end is the most amazing all-natural fertilizer and soil builder in the world. See : Worms Castings
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