Do Epsom salts benefit vegetable plants?

Joined
Jun 2, 2020
Messages
31
Reaction score
5
Country
United States
Do Epsom salts offer any help to tomatoes and peppers? If so, at which stages of growth should these salts be applied to the soil near the tomatoes and peppers, and how much should roughly be applied around the plants?
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
11,484
Reaction score
5,590
Location
La Porte Texas
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
Yes, it does help. For me, I use it to stop Blossom End Rot on tomatoes in my alkaline soils. I don't know what it does in other soils. I apply it at planting by sprinkling a couple of handfuls around the base of the plant. It also helps with chlorosis in peppers. I put it on every plant in my garden except greens, beans and corn. I can't say it prevents anything but blossom end rot but all of my plants are of good color and disease free. And it is cheap.
If you have alkaline soils and also have a lot of calcium in your soil and you get blossom end rot, what is happening is that the plant is unable to uptake the calcium. ES enables the plant to uptake calcium. If your tomatoes get blossom end rot ES cannot reverse the damage, but by sprinkling a couple of handfuls around the base or by mixing it in water it will stop future tomatoes from getting it.
.
 
Joined
Jun 2, 2020
Messages
31
Reaction score
5
Country
United States
Yes, it does help. For me, I use it to stop Blossom End Rot on tomatoes in my alkaline soils. I don't know what it does in other soils. I apply it at planting by sprinkling a couple of handfuls around the base of the plant. It also helps with chlorosis in peppers. I put it on every plant in my garden except greens, beans and corn. I can't say it prevents anything but blossom end rot but all of my plants are of good color and disease free. And it is cheap.
If you have alkaline soils and also have a lot of calcium in your soil and you get blossom end rot, what is happening is that the plant is unable to uptake the calcium. ES enables the plant to uptake calcium. If your tomatoes get blossom end rot ES cannot reverse the damage, but by sprinkling a couple of handfuls around the base or by mixing it in water it will stop future tomatoes from getting it.
.

my tomatoes have not yet flowered but two years ago I dealt with blossom end rot. Should I add ES, now, shortly after transplanting the tomatoes and peppers in my garden, or wait until they flower and I noticed the end rot?
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
11,484
Reaction score
5,590
Location
La Porte Texas
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
my tomatoes have not yet flowered but two years ago I dealt with blossom end rot. Should I add ES, now, shortly after transplanting the tomatoes and peppers in my garden, or wait until they flower and I noticed the end rot?
Do it now. Just sprinkle a couple of handfuls around the base of the plants and water it in.
 
Joined
Sep 7, 2019
Messages
11
Reaction score
5
Location
Southern Ca.
Country
United States
You might want to try using liquid calcium for tomatoes for the previous years I was having BER read about liquid calcium last year was the first year there no BER on tomatoes.
This season I mix one teaspoon per gallon liquid calcium of water for every time I water the tomatoes plants so far I am very happy on how the tomatoes are doing.
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
11,484
Reaction score
5,590
Location
La Porte Texas
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
You might want to try using liquid calcium for tomatoes for the previous years I was having BER read about liquid calcium last year was the first year there no BER on tomatoes.
This season I mix one teaspoon per gallon liquid calcium of water for every time I water the tomatoes plants so far I am very happy on how the tomatoes are doing.
Is your soil alkaline with a base of limestone? The reason I ask is because I just don't understand how ES works. It has been explained but I'm just mentally challenged I guess. If your soil is like mine and the liquid calcium works there then the BER has to do with the "type" of calcium that is available to plants.
 

Meadowlark

No N-P-K Required
Joined
Feb 5, 2019
Messages
2,690
Reaction score
2,240
Location
East Texas
Hardiness Zone
old zone 8b/new zone 9a
Country
United States
It works as well in a 6.5 ph soil. Works like a champ! I simply wouldn't grow tomatoes without it.
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2020
Messages
1,550
Reaction score
504
Country
United States
This is what I use, and its super! 0-0-0. Calcium and Magnesium are two of the most important secondary macronutrients for plants out there, along with sulfur. Its best that your plants get an adequate supplement of calcium and magnesium, rather than waiting for symptoms of deficiencies to show up. You can do that with Cal-mag + without danger of over fertilizing simple by adding a little to the water. I just bring the ppm up to 115 from 17 ppm, by putting10 ml of cal-mag in 5 gallons of water and water my calcium hungry plants. So easy to do and the plants love it.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_1979.JPG
    IMG_1979.JPG
    96.9 KB · Views: 154
Joined
Jul 28, 2014
Messages
61
Reaction score
26
Location
Almonte Ontario
Country
Canada
Yes, it does help. For me, I use it to stop Blossom End Rot on tomatoes in my alkaline soils. I don't know what it does in other soils. I apply it at planting by sprinkling a couple of handfuls around the base of the plant. It also helps with chlorosis in peppers. I put it on every plant in my garden except greens, beans and corn. I can't say it prevents anything but blossom end rot but all of my plants are of good color and disease free. And it is cheap.
If you have alkaline soils and also have a lot of calcium in your soil and you get blossom end rot, what is happening is that the plant is unable to uptake the calcium. ES enables the plant to uptake calcium. If your tomatoes get blossom end rot ES cannot reverse the damage, but by sprinkling a couple of handfuls around the base or by mixing it in water it will stop future tomatoes from getting it.
.
I'm not sure what to believe about epsom salts anymore. I'm reading more and more articles saying that it should not be used unless the soil has a magnesium deficiency. Also adding excess magnesium to the soil actually prevents the uptake of calcium and so can actually increase blossom end rot in tomatoes. https://gardening.usask.ca/article-list-soils/epsom-salts-are-not-recommended-for-tomatos.php
 
P

Peace perfect peace

Hi earth lovers,
Ref Epson salts, these salts increase the soils PH factor and as for toms, it really should be added to the planting soil/compost when your planting the plants once they're at the common leaf re -potting stage 'Tip' when your potting on plant the plants deep into the new compost ie all the way up to the shoulders of the new leaf, this helps the stems really become strong and the roots have a good strong system and all this helps the plants grow strong and the epson salts will help keeping the end rot problem away,

One thing i feel should be talked about ref soil/compost improving is the use of Lime mixed in the compost when the prep for toms is being made, Lime is a very good soil improver and the likes of slugs / snails do not like lime "Hence" your giving the likes of Lupin new plants a much better chance to grow past the the slug/snail problem stage. Anyone who has managed to get Lupin seeds to grow to the small plant stage will know Slugs/snails will eat all you plant out in one evening, Lime will stop these insects As will a boiled garlic juice watering around the plants.

One last little thought ref EPSON/Salts this product is also excellent spread over the Lawn as it helps the grass rooting system and if used on a regular basis you'll soon notice the grass has a nicer green look to it. "remember to water it in as soon as you can after spreading it and as with any plant feed do the feeding last time of the day and let the moist evening tempiture settle it in the ground, never use chemicles in direct sun .
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
11,484
Reaction score
5,590
Location
La Porte Texas
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
I'm not sure what to believe about epsom salts anymore. I'm reading more and more articles saying that it should not be used unless the soil has a magnesium deficiency. Also adding excess magnesium to the soil actually prevents the uptake of calcium and so can actually increase blossom end rot in tomatoes. https://gardening.usask.ca/article-list-soils/epsom-salts-are-not-recommended-for-tomatos.php
I think the use of epsom salt depends on whether your soil is acidic or alkaline. It has been many many years since I gardened in acidic soils and back then using these soil additives was unheard of. But I can say this. When gardening in my alkaline soils, a soil with an over abundance of calcium, using Epsom Salt is a MUST. Using ES actually enables the plant to uptake calcium. Without ES I could not grow any tomatoes except for cherry varieties. I could not grow melons of any kind. I could grow peppers but they would all have Blossom End Rot on the tips. The tomatoes and melons would be useless because of BER. I suppose you could use too much ES and get too much magnesium in the soil but IMO it would take a LOT of ES to do this and crop rotation and organic fertilization would tend to alleviate any excess buildup of Magnesium.
 
P

Peace perfect peace

Hi Chuck,
Just a word of guidence ref what you read on these forums,
All forums that allowe the amature's of any subject to give what they believe to be the answer to the verious questions asked are jjust that Amatures or to put it another way very keen hobby folk, what you really need to do if you want the expert's reply to your question is to get hold of the books all written by the experts on the subjects you'd like to learn about,
Now here is a bit of advice ref getting hold of such books "all written by those who are experts on the verious subjects"
Have a look around your verious charity / Animal rescue/ Cancer charity shops at the books they have for sale on your subject,
You'll find a lot of very old books written by experts who may well have past away but the info is still good info and you should understand these books ended up in such shops/stores because the owners may well have also past away "But" when bought these book did cost a lot and so only those keen gardeners in this case would both buy and use such a book, And you'll be helping the verious charity,
In these so called modern times and with such things as Google you can ask for the information you require "but again ask who's giving it to you and do they have any qualifcations to pass on such info, This way you'll feel a lot better knowing the info is from those who spent many years learning what they know,
I myself (age 71) have a rook of books bought in this way on all subjects of gardening and ive found the older books are made up of many an author and this is because your getting the best from a writer who's dealing with one subject unlike todays books that will have all kinds of A1 size full page pictures of '"shall we say veg" ie here is a picture of a cabbage !!!!! Well anyone who's at this stage in gardening is'nt ready for a serious read and these books are about an inch thick "The older book are much thicker (Ive just pulled on off my book shelf called The Garden for expert and amateure dated 1934 it's about 4inch thick and its got at least 200 seperate offerings from expert garden writers of the time, It cost me 18yrs ago £3-00 And chuck this is only one of many books ive bought over the years.
I hope chuck this little lot is a bit of good to your question and i wish you good gardening.
 

Meadowlark

No N-P-K Required
Joined
Feb 5, 2019
Messages
2,690
Reaction score
2,240
Location
East Texas
Hardiness Zone
old zone 8b/new zone 9a
Country
United States
If you don't use ES do you get BER?

I would say "if I don't use certain soil amendments, I absolutely get BER without fail. ES is a very convenient one to use to prevent BER and enable your plants to more efficiently use soil nutrients. I also use ag. lime which I add to the soil months in advance of planting tomatoes. Together, I never experience BER.
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
11,484
Reaction score
5,590
Location
La Porte Texas
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
I would say "if I don't use certain soil amendments, I absolutely get BER without fail. ES is a very convenient one to use to prevent BER and enable your plants to more efficiently use soil nutrients. I also use ag. lime which I add to the soil months in advance of planting tomatoes. Together, I never experience BER.
Your soil is acidic, mine is alkaline. I have too much lime in my soil. I have tried sulfur but I couldn't see much difference if any. This shoots down my theory about ES only being worthwhile in alkaline soils. I don't know if ES helps in nutrient uptake or not in my soil as I use it on just about everything so I have no way of judging. And as long as I apply ES I too never get BER but if I don't I get next to nothing.
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Similar Threads


Members online

No members online now.

Forum statistics

Threads
26,740
Messages
257,952
Members
13,317
Latest member
milevaa

Latest Threads

Top