Fertilisers and Plant Food
Nutrients are required by plants to grow and reproduce. The right combination keeps them strong, vigorous and healthy. Plants get what they need from a spectrum of 11 essential nutrients. These nutrients are further broken down into three major groups based on what the plants need.
Primary Nutrients (required at large amounts)
Secondary Nutrients (required in lesser amounts)
Micronutrients (required in trace amounts)
If these nutrients are not present in the soil in sufficient amounts your plants will not thrive, and may even die. The most common deficiencies found are in the Primary Nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium), for these are in the greatest demand by plants and may be quickly depleted from the garden soil.
The need for Fertiliser
Soil differs from place to place. Some soils are “dead”, as there are no soil micronutrients available in the soil to help the plant grow. Fertilisers help enrich the soil and help plants to be stronger and healthier.
Why does fertiliser burn my plants?
Golden Rule: Always read the label first!
Apply the correct amount of fertiliser product to plants. Do not assume by doubling a dosage that you are hastening a plant’s ability to grow better in a shorter time. After applying fertilisers, immediately water the garden area to wash the fertiliser off the plant tissues and onto the soil. Never apply fertilisers when a plant is stressed from disease or drought, as it may be more sensitive to the drying effects of fertiliser salts. Also, do not apply fertilisers onto wet leaves. Particles of fertiliser salts may dissolve on wet leaves and instantly act against the healthy plant tissues they come in contact with.
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