Natural Plant Foods

Type

Source

Composition (%)

N

P

K

CA

MG

Animal manures

Cattle

0.53

029

0.48

0.29

0.11

(fresh)

Chicken

0.89

0.48

0.83

0.38

0.13

Horse

0.55

0.27

0.57

027

0.11

Sheep

0.89

0.48

0.83

0.21

013

Animal manures

Cattle

1.00

0.50

1.00

_

(dried)

Horse

1.50

1.00

1.00

Sheep

1.50

1.00

1 00

Animal tankage

Dried blood meal

13.00

1.50

1.00

_

Bone meal

3.50

15.00

Dried fish scrap

10.00

4.50

Fish emulsion

7.50

Pulverized rock

Rock phosphate

_

30 CO

_

_

_

powders

Limestone

-

40.00

Green Sand

1.35

6.00

1.63

Vegetable residues

Coffee grounds

2.00

0.40

2.50

_

_

Cottonseed meal

6 50

2.00

1.50

Seaweed

1.70

080

5.00

Soybean meal

6.50

1.00

2.00

Wood ashes

2.00

5.00

23.00

Oak leaves

0.80

0.40

0.20

Maple leaves

0.50

0.10

0.50

5 pounds of potassium.

Manufacturers make up different formulations depending on use. A good general fertilizer suitable for spring fertilizing might be 5-10-5 or 10-10-10. A fertilizer meant for potatoes might have the formulation of 0-20-20, and one meant especially for tomatoes might be low in nitrogen, high in phosphorus and medium in potassium, such as 5-10-5.

The following nitrogen materials are also used by home gardeners: ammonium sulfate, ammonium nitrite, urea sulfate, ammonium nitrate, nitrate of soda, ammonium phosphate and calcium nitrate.

Sidedressing

In order to achieve optimum growth, many crops, such as asparagus, corn, and tomatoes, need additional amounts of nitrogen in the form of ammonium nitrate during the season. (See Figure 2.17 for amounts and times.) Do not allow fertilizer to come into contact with plant leaves and stems. Apply ammonium nitrate in a band along the side of the row or around transplanted crops, 4 to 6 inches away. Water lightly if rain is not expected.

Application of dried fertilizers

If you have not tested your soil you can apply a general fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphorus (P205) and soluble potash (K20), rather than a specific analysis for each vegetable. These three grades give excellent results with most garden crops: 6-12-12,1010-10 and 5-10-15.

You can either broadcast the fertilizer before planting and work it into the soil or apply it in bands at seeding time. If you broadcast the fertilizer, work it into the soil fairly soon, either mechanically or by

Figure 2.14 How to sow seeds

Figure 2.14 How to sow seeds

Vegetable Seed Germination Chart
Preparing the seed bed is very important for good germination. Loosen the soil and rake smooth to pulverize and level the surface soil. Use two poles and some twine to mark the row and to use as a guide for straight sowing.
Vegetable Fertilizer Guide
A triangular how works well for digging a straight furrow.
Plant Spacing Chart Triangular
Tap the seeds out of the packet When the seedlings appear, thin to the correct spacing. Large seeds can be placed in the bottom of the furrow in groups of two, at the recommended spacing.
A gentle tapping of the soil with the back of a how will help to ensure soil/seed contact Follow with a gentle watering, keeping the soil moist until the seeds germinate.

Credit: national Garden Bureau, Inc.

hand.

To band a fertilizer, first determine where you are going to plant the seeds or plants. Mark the row with a small furrow or a string tied from one end of the row to another. Dig a shallow trench 2 to 4 inches to one side of the row and 2 to 4 inches below where the seed is to be placed. Place the fertilizer in the bottom of the trench and cover it with soil.

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