Fertilizer cannot be used at random. There are timelines to be respected and mistakes to be avoided to ensure that the results are as expected.
The fertilizer helps your plants in their growth and development. If you want a lush garden or a beautiful flowered balcony, fertilizing is a fundamental step, not to be overlooked. Despite this, when used at the wrong time and in excessive quantities, the fertilizer could even damage the plant. Furthermore, massive doses of fertilizer could be harmful to the soil as well as to ourselves.
Here because, when deciding to use fertilizer on their plants, it is necessary to respect some timing and precautions, as well as reading the packaging very well. Yes, because it can often be difficult to use natural fertilizer, especially if we refer to plants that are in pots or on the balcony. Chemical or synthetic fertilizers, on the other hand, are enriched and produced in the laboratory.
Read also: Furnishing your home yourself: 10 mistakes not to make
In this article, we will try to guide you the timing and use of commercial fertilizer.
Types of fertilizer
Before thinking about fertilizing your plants, you need to understand the components of chemical fertilizers. Components that are clearly marked on the package and that will help you figure out which will be best for your plant’s needs.
The three basic chemical elements for plant growth they are represented with the abbreviation NPK which is usually found on the back of the package. These three fundamental elements are:
- Nitrogen (N): which allows the leaves to grow luxuriantly. It is therefore indicated above all for plants with very thick foliage but also for some vegetables and legumes. Be careful though. These vegetables and legumes are able to obtain nitrogen directly from the soil, in depth. So, for them, the fertilizer will have to contain few amounts of nitrogen. Conversely, grains that have narrow leaves need more nitrogen.
- Phosphate (P): in chemical fertilizers it is extracted from industrial waste or mines. In nature, it is found in clayey or sandy soils.
- Potassium (K): mainly for fruit plants. It is used by plants at the cell level.
On sale you can find fertilizers:
- liquids which have a quick effect (they last a couple of days at the most) diluted in water;
- dust which must be added to the water;
- in granules which must be incorporated into the ground in a uniform way;
- in pellets which have an organic basis and can be either incorporated into the ground or distributed on the surface; they have a very gradual release.
How to use the fertilizer
Potted plants have a limited amount of soil, where nutrients decrease not only with time but also with excessive wetting. When in spring, you will repot the plant, you’ll use new, softer, better soil to absorb the fertilizer the plant will feed on. In this case, it would be better to consider a programmed release fertilizer.
It may interest you: Lighting a studio apartment: tips and mistakes to avoid
If you want to fertilize your perennials in the garden, again, spring will be the best time to do it. Adding fertilizer will allow the plants to flower better. In this case, better to use organic fertilizer, also in pellets, or granular with scheduled release.
In addition to these two precautions, let’s review some types of more common plants. Annual plants they should be considered as a potted plant. You will need to use fertilizer continuously throughout all stages of their growth and flowering. Be careful not to overdo it. The fertilizer must be rich in phosphorus, potassium and microelements.
Do you have problems with plants? Join the group
As for roses and trees, the fertilizer must be given several times throughout the year. Excessive dosage, however, can lead to colored streaks on light flowers.
As for the vegetables, the fertilizer will have to be specific to each of them. Fertilization must be given in spring and autumn, when the sun’s rays are less strong.
When to use fertilizer
Spring is generally considered to be the period that, most of all, is useful for fertilizing. After all, it is precisely with the arrival of summer that new plants are put in, the old ones are repotted, cut or pruned.
However, not all plants need fertilizer at the same time. Every single plant, but also every single product purchased, can have different timing.
A rough tip is to observe your plants to understand when to fertilize more or less. If your plant produces a lot of leaves but no fruit, you may have given too much fertilizer. If, on the other hand, the plant grows little, it is frail, it probably needs another dose of fertilizer.
Beware of external agents: pest attacks, lack of sunlight, could be confused with fertilizer deficiency. Therefore, better to fertilize with small amounts of fertilizer, at regular intervals, so that your plants can stay healthy.
Fertilizer: how and when to use it right – photos and images
Now that fertilizer has no more secrets for you, all you have to do is decide when to use it for your plants. Good job!