Natural fertiliser tips


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Does anyone have tips for natural fertilisers using kitchen waste?

I tend to use teabags as fertiliser. I use large terracotta pots for indoor plants, and I found that when I'm growing strawberries in pots, if I put a used teabag at the bottom over the hole, it keeps the compost in and helps the plant produce a lot of foliage over winter. Changing it when I re-pot the plant keeps it well-fertilised. Just using the mesh over the hole still makes it a lot less messy if I have to move the pot.

Do you do any tricks like that?
 
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I doubt a teabag over a drainage hole will supply much fertilizer especially since it is located at the drainage exit. Of course teabags are designed to let water run through, but with age it is possible that one could actually impede drainage.

As for keeping soil from spilling from drainage holes, usually nothing is needed. After any initial spillage, most potting soils will knit and hold together in a pot. Sometimes, if a pot has exceptionally large drainage holes or if the soil mix is mostly sand, a mesh screen may be placed over the hole before planting.

On a related note. Beware of putting some teabags in your compost. Only some brands use bags made from completely compostable paper. Others bags are a fine, shiny plastic mesh, but the most confusing are those that feel like paper but still have plastic fibers embedded throughout the paper. There are lists online of teabags that are compostable but such packaging specifications often change. Double-check by examining your teabags, also look for any unrotted bags in your compost.
 
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Ah, but do you have any good tips, Marck?

I would expect people to know this one, but they obviously don't. Quite often when I was gardening I would be asked to get rid of some plant "Which has just never taken off". When I lifted it I would find a compact root system the shape of the original pot, the plant had never been able to make the jump across the chemical divide of two different sorts of earth.
To avoid this, when planting out knock any loose earth off the plant and into the hole, there is usually more at the top of the pot, and mix it into the base and sides of the hole. Then when filling back make sure earth from the ground goes onto the top to bed the plant in. It will make it easier to jump the barrier which is made indefinite and the chemistry of the ground will be washed down to the roots when you water.
If it is not too delicate I often give the plant a twist to mix the earth and roots before I start back-filling as well.
 

Hedgewitch

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I moved into my totally barren house/garden three years ago. Even the weeds didn't grow. I saved all my kitchen scraps, dug holes everywhere and filled them up with anything organic, threw in some manure and wham!! There's earthworms everywhere I dig now. As you can see, it didn't take that long.
 

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If I get an accumulation of things like rank weeds, long grass or anything else that won't rot too quickly I find adding a couple of lots of kitchen waste helps no end. Normally I keep it separate in a black compost bin to contain the smell.
 

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