what is a recommended general plant food/helper that can help my plants and garden grow?


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Hi all so I am kind of looking for a dummy proof fertilizer or something that can help my container veggies and also my decorative flowers/shrubs/rose bush


Im confused on what to use since there is so many options. these are some of the foods I was looking at

https://www.amazon.com/Liquid-Organ...85289&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=liquid+kelp&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/Fox-Farm-Liq...F8&qid=1534685312&sr=1-17&keywords=plant+food

https://www.amazon.com/Fox-Farm-Liq...1&refRID=6GX97FBFGCY5KKC9SYRG#customerReviews


at this point im not even sure what the difference is...if I should buy anything else?

should I also get calcium, magnesium etc or these provide it?
 
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Hi all so I am kind of looking for a dummy proof fertilizer or something that can help my container veggies and also my decorative flowers/shrubs/rose bush


Im confused on what to use since there is so many options. these are some of the foods I was looking at

https://www.amazon.com/Liquid-Organ...85289&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=liquid+kelp&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/Fox-Farm-Liq...F8&qid=1534685312&sr=1-17&keywords=plant+food

https://www.amazon.com/Fox-Farm-Liq...1&refRID=6GX97FBFGCY5KKC9SYRG#customerReviews


at this point im not even sure what the difference is...if I should buy anything else?

should I also get calcium, magnesium etc or these provide it?
What you need is a well balanced fertilizer. Of the three listed above the last one is the best for your purpose. These liquid fertilizers must be applied more than pelleted fertilizers do. I would say the Espoma line of fertilizers are best overall for online purchases, both liquid and pelleted. Generally speaking the NPK numbers on organic fertilizers are not that important as compared to synthetic/oil based fertilizers. For all around plant growth the first number, nitrogen, is for foliar growth. The second number is phosphorus which generally helps in blooming and the third number is for potash which is needed basically for plant growth and health. Organic fertilizers will have many other minerals included such as magnesium and iron. There are many soil amendments one can add which feed the soil and in turn the plants themselves.
 
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ahh thank you for this information!

So I will go ahead and start with the last one in the link. Is there anything I should be adding to really help out my veggies and blooming of my shrubs? any other additions you guys recommend?
 
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ahh thank you for this information!

So I will go ahead and start with the last one in the link. Is there anything I should be adding to really help out my veggies and blooming of my shrubs? any other additions you guys recommend?
I don't know your situation but about the very best thing you can do is add compost tea. It is amazing stuff and very cheap. Go to the organic gardening forum on this site and read the Compost and Compost Tea thread I wrote telling a little about how to start.
 
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Containers, what I am doing now. I am using regular old miracle gro all purpose plant food. In the large containers it is working out well. Small containers not as much, but I suspect local conditions play a factor- it is seriously hot here.

Have not picked out a calcium that I will need more sooner then later for the tomato and squash.
 
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Containers, what I am doing now. I am using regular old miracle gro all purpose plant food. In the large containers it is working out well. Small containers not as much, but I suspect local conditions play a factor- it is seriously hot here.

Have not picked out a calcium that I will need more sooner then later for the tomato and squash.
Before you start adding calcium you should make sure that you need it. If I am not mistaken NW La has acidic soils and if it does then you will (probably) need added calcium. About the best you can get for acidic soils is calcium carbonate. It comes under different trade names. Rock phosphate is great and so is rock powder. Powdered limestone is OK but it is SLOW acting when compared to the above.
 
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After I first set up the containers along with coming here looking for info/advice I started to read as much as I could find. One thing that came up often was blossom end rot as an issue with container tomato and squash, and the need to dose with calcium to prevent. I was just going to give a dose so the issue did not come up.

The soil here is acidic, I am going with more so at my loc being it was used for pine farming for some time.
I can wait and see, the squash have some sets, tomato have not bloomed yet.
 
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After I first set up the containers along with coming here looking for info/advice I started to read as much as I could find. One thing that came up often was blossom end rot as an issue with container tomato and squash, and the need to dose with calcium to prevent. I was just going to give a dose so the issue did not come up.

The soil here is acidic, I am going with more so at my loc being it was used for pine farming for some time.
I can wait and see, the squash have some sets, tomato have not bloomed yet.
Calcium is a strange thing. Sometimes plants can uptake it and other times not. It depends on, I believe, the source of the calcium. Here where I live in alkaline soil there is calcium everywhere but plants have a difficult time uptaking it. Then there are places in acidic soil where very little calcium is available and plants starve for it. Where I live Blossom End Rot runs rampant even though the soil is chock full of calcium. If I don't add Epsom Salts I won't get many tomatoes. As @headfullofbees stated woodash is a great soil amendment for acidic soils but you must know your soils Ph. Woodash in lightly acidic soils, about 6.5 or so may be a detriment to plant growth. KInow your soils Ph before adding a lot of anything to it. It is easy to add to but difficult to subtract from.
 
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Hi all, thanks for replies.

So as of now, I am just using Fox product and liquid kelp and will be mixing with water. Seems I can use both of them since Kelp can be added to existing fertilizer. I will experiment and definitely keep you guys posted on my veggies.

as for my outdoor decorative plants, I will be using Miracle grow and Liquid Kelp every week or 2 and see how they turn out. Will also keep you guys posted.

When I start going into tomatoes and fruiting type veggies/fruits I will add other stuff such as calcium and what not but will do more research

thanks for all of your feed back! Also going to try out woodash for veggies that dont like acid.
 
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Cows digest their diet of grass very thoroughly for animals of their size, but the bacteria in their manure needs to continue to break it down for another 5 years or so before it's broken down far enough for plants to use.
 
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Cows digest their diet of grass very thoroughly for animals of their size, but the bacteria in their manure needs to continue to break it down for another 5 years or so before it's broken down far enough for plants to use.
But I thought if a plant needed a particular nutrient it would trade carbon in the form of sugars from its roots to attract the sort of bacteria capable of providing that predigested nutrient? I understand the enzymes bacteria produce are capable of even dissolving the minerals of rock and soil?

I understand that the high nitrogen values of manure come from protiens, the amino acids of which they are made being quite valuable to the bio which uses it to make their little bodies. It seems better to let them live and die nearer the plant than away from it, once the hotness of the Nitrogen burn has settled down.

I understand there are soils in the Amazon that actually grow in volume because of this biological growth. I guess they add organic matter.
 
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Wood ash and bone meal do me well. If something needs an immediate boost I use a bit of blood fish and bone. Plus whatever I can compost of course.
 
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And of course, if you want to be daring and unconventional, human urine is remarkably similar to miracle-gro.
Don't believe all that 'it will burn the plants!!!' hysteria. That's just panicked ignorance ...about both miracle-gro and urine.
 
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And of course, if you want to be daring and unconventional, human urine is remarkably similar to miracle-gro.
Don't believe all that 'it will burn the plants!!!' hysteria. That's just panicked ignorance ...about both miracle-gro and urine.
Haha I had a fellow come by selling me a interest in a venture and that need came up as it will do. Off my back deck I directed him to observe the needs of my new compost pile and had to explain that urine is a subtle fertilizer. I think he felt closer to the world for having contributed in some small way.
 
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Cows digest their diet of grass very thoroughly for animals of their size, but the bacteria in their manure needs to continue to break it down for another 5 years or so before it's broken down far enough for plants to use.
In all seriousness, I found in my own mind a point of agreement with you. You are in fact correct, even if you are only parroting the idea of someone you respect, and I want to acknowledge what may be at the least one bombshell idea behind your 5 year plan. There are some chemicals that cause what is referred to as killer compost. Your time element infers that which saddens me to see common knowledge moving to incorporate such industrial reality.

picloram, clopyralid, and aminopyralid

A few names that would influence you to use 5 years as a safe time frame. I apologize for not being able to see your world more clearly.

Having said that, 5 year old manure is useless as a manure compost. It will have no larger values of amino acids and has become nothing more than the compost of a dried twig or mown grass. I would spread soybean meal instead.

@Chuck what do you think?
 
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Cows digest their diet of grass very thoroughly for animals of their size, but the bacteria in their manure needs to continue to break it down for another 5 years or so before it's broken down far enough for plants to use.
Come walk through my pastures sometime. Observe how the grass is much greener and thicker and vigorous around the manure piles. Then tell me how it takes 5 years for plants to use. Sorry, that dog don't hunt!!
 
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d
Come walk through my pastures sometime. Observe how the grass is much greener and thicker and vigorous around the manure piles. Then tell me how it takes 5 years for plants to use. Sorry, that dog don't hunt!!
I put 27 bags of black kow manure compost in my garden 2 years ago. 1 cubic yard. Those chemicals did not kill it, they stunted it. The first year was really bad, The 3rd replanting of tomatoes was in 20 grow bags of 7 gallon size. Its real enough for me. This year was better, but obviously not healed. That crap should not be allowed. If its mostly gone by now, thats 2.5 years so yeah, 5 years for clean is right on point in my opinion.
 

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