Now that spring is 60 days away in the Ozarks, it is time to start gathering some supplies to make some liquid fertilizer. I have written about my dry fertilizer in previous articles. I like a little wet fertilizer around during the growing season, because it tends to interact quickly with plants, and tends not to burn them. Apply many dry fertilizers, either directly under a plant or close to it, and you can kill your plant. Too much goodie all at once spoils the party! A liquid fertilizer is often a product that is mostly water. Hence, the plants tolerate better. The liquid recipe also makes it easier for the plant to get the nutrients, via osmosis.
I like to actually make the fertilizer in 5 gallon buckets! They are easy for me to carry. I have a stainless soup ladle that I use to put a scoop around each plant. I have enough old plastic buckets around, from home brewing, to meet my need. You can usually get a good plastic bucket, however, at any hardware store. I don’t recommend, however, using old buckets that you have used for painting!
So, here are some recipes for the 5 gallon bucket o’ garden love:
Tea Style Recipe No. 1 :
Fill your bucket half full of old grass and plant clippings. Fill bucket with water. Set it in the Sun for 2 days. Then add a cup of Fish emulsion (of some sort) to the batch. You are ready to go. Place 1 cup of the mix around each plant. You accomplish two tasks: fertilizing and watering. For new planting, where your plants are not very old yet, use ½ cup. You do not want to overwhelm the young plants.
Tea Style Recipe No. 2:
Fill your bucket half full of old grass and plant clippings, same as above. Then add one coffee can of well aged manure. (The definition of well aged is at least a year old, especially with cow and horse manure.) Fill bucket with water. Set it in the Sun for 2 days. Then add a cup of Fish emulsion (of some sort) to the batch. You are ready to go. Place 1 cup of the mix around each plant. You accomplish two tasks: fertilizing and watering. For new planting, where your plants are not very old yet, use ½ cup. You do not want to overwhelm the young plants. I like this recipe for plants that need lots of root structure, like carrots and onions! Works good on turnips as well. (What! You don’t eat turnips! Shame on you!)
Liquid Recipe No. 3:
This is a recipe you can use right out of the shoot! You do not have to wait for grass to grow, or animals to get their business done. Mix the following together in a 5 gallon bucket of water. 1 cup of Epsom Salts. 1 bottle of beer. 1 cup of ammonia. ½ cup of dish washing soap like Ivory (no detergent fighting power!) Again put a cup around each plant, and you get your watering done too. Also follow the rule for young plants.
Slainte from the Celtic Ozark Garden,
Ray Province is a retired minister, and owner of The Celtic Ozarkian, a website dedicated to life in the Ozarks, from a Celtic point of view! Ray also works as an IT programmer in the healthcare industry, and freelances in SEO and website development. You can reach Ray by emailing email@example.com, or @celticozarkian on Twitter.