All plants are not created equal, and for that reason, their needs for fertilization and nutrients will not be the same. I was reading labels and doing research trying to figure out how much liquid fertilizer is needed per each different plant?
I did some research and discovered:
Annual plants will need one-ounce of liquid fertilizer per square foot of plant and perennials need two-three ounces per square foot of plant.
Liquid fertilizer has been used for many years to add much-needed nutrients to crops helping them grow faster, healthier, and larger. To get the largest most lushes fruits you will need to do your homework and make sure they are being cared for properly. Liquid fertilizer can be a great component to helping you get the crops you want but be careful because too much or too little can do more damage than any good.
What is Liquid Fertilizer?
A good fertilization option for any garden, indoor or out, is liquid fertilizer. But what is liquid fertilizer?
Liquid fertilizer is a highly concentrated fertilizer formula that you will need to mix with water. It can be purchased in a liquid form or you can get salts that mix and dissolve into the water to create the liquid fertilizer. Creating a homemade liquid fertilizer is a popular option too.
When purchasing liquid fertilizer it’s important to keep a note of the prices and how to get the best bang for your buck. However, dry fertilizers will cost less than liquid fertilizers just to let you know. When it comes to liquid fertilizers, the soluble salts will be less expensive when compared to liquid fertilizers sold in bottles.
How Much Liquid Fertilizer Per Plant?
1. Tomato Plant– For tomato plants use a formula with calcium in it. Then you can use a normal 10/10/10 fertilizer. For your tomato bushes, you will need about an ounce of formula per square foot of the plant.
2. Potatoes – Find a liquid fertilizer that has a bit higher content of potassium as this is needed for your potatoes. 10/10/5 Mix your concentrate to your gallon container of water and then apply an ounce of the formula to every square foot of the planted potatoes.
3. Onions – Onions require a formula with a higher content of nitrogen. The same routine goes for onions, you will need one ounce of formula per square foot of onion plant.
4. Grapes – Grapes vines are perennials plants so they will need more fertilizer to keep them alive and healthy all year round. You will want to apply 1/3 cup of your fertilizer formula to every 25 feet of your grapevine.
5. Corn – For a cornfield you will need to apply the fertilizer according to apply about 8 ounces of your formula to every 2 yards of corn rows.
6. Pepper Plants – For peppers, you will want to use a formula with a high content of potassium and phosphorus then nitrate (5/10/10) these plants will need about an ounce of fertilizer per square foot of plant.
7. Apple Trees -Find a fertilizer with a higher concentrate of Nitrogen in it for your Apple trees. Apply about about 2 liters of fertilizer to every 1 inch of tree trunk.
8. Cucumbers – You want a 10/10/10 formula for cucumbers and you want to use about 1 ounce per every square foot.
9. Green Beans – A 5/10/5 fertilizer is ideal for green beans and you would follow the 1 ounce per every square foot.
If you are creating a small home garden and you don’t want to go out and purchase several different formulas, you can always grab a mixture 10/10/10 all-purpose formula. This should provide enough nutrition for all your plants. If you notice a specific fruit or vegetable is not growing properly you may want to add a more specific brand to that produce.
If you are growing flowers and regular house plants follow directions on products such as miracle gro and others.
How Much Liquid Fertilizer Per Gallon of Water? (Mixing Directions)
Most brands of liquid fertilizer will have to add 1-3 teaspoons of liquid fertilizer to a gallon of water. Simply mix the two ingredients either by stirring or shaking the container, and you are ready to begin applying. Be sure not to add too much concentrate to your watering can because too much fertilizer can damage your plants and even kill them.
Look at the label and follow the directions of the specific product for the best results. Some bottled formulas will have huge ratios where a lot of water must be concentrated down before use. Typically these are used in irrigation techniques that automatically water plants, like ina green house for example.
How to Apply Liquid Fertilizer to Plants?
To apply most liquid fertilizer, you add the concentrate to a gallon of water in your gardening can or large pray bottle. Once mixed completely you will apply a generous amount to your plant. Quite often you will find it’s going to be per square foot. You can apply directly to the plant and its leave so that the nutrients can be quickly absorbed by the plants and will start working quickly. You will also want to be sure that you are saturating the ground with the formula so that it reaches the root.
Irrigation systems can water and fertilize through systems that will need setting up. This is typically found in larger gardens, commercially-run gardens.
How Often to Apply Liquid Fertilizer?
Each plant needs fertilization at different times. Most of them will require repeated fertilization between every 2-4 weeks. If your plants seem to be growing okay, then waiting until closer to the 4-week mark would be fine. You may notice while doing your daily gardening that some of your plants may be not as green or as full as they should be, that is an indication your plant needs more fertilization. If your plant is turning brown or drooping that is an indication you are applying to much fertilization and you could kill your plants.
Please note sometimes you may not need to fertilize at all after the initial dose. If you purchased or planted in rich soils the plants may already have everything they need to grow. You can always check your soils PH balance before gardening or speak with your local agricultural organization.
When Will I See Results?
If fertilizing properly you will begin noticing changes in your plants within 2-5 days. Your plants will start growing at a more rapid rate and they will most likely look more vibrant in color and larger in size. If after a week of fertilizing, you do not see any results you may need more fertilizer or you may need to start over completely with new plants.
If you are wondering how many seeds per hole check out the article here! It goes into detail about planting seeds and how to get the best germination rates.
Just Listen to Your Plants
Fertilizing your crops can be a simple solution to slow grown crops or low producing seedlings. Be sure to check the directions on any product you purchase and never over fertilizer. If done properly you will have a delicious addition to your dinner plate at the end of a successful harvest.
Jamie is the founder of The Backyard Pros. When he was 15 years old he started working at a garden centre helping people buy plants, gardening products, and lawn care products. He has real estate experience and he is a home owner. Jamie loves backyard projects, refinishing furniture, and enjoys sharing his knowledge online.