What's your favorite fertilizer?

Rhinebeck, NY(Zone 5b)

I generally like to use the Tones: Tree Tone, Rose Tone, Plant Tone, etc., and this year I'm going to experiment w/ Alfalfa Tea and Messenger for the first time. Also, I side dress everything w/ bagged manure and greensand and bone meal in the spring.

What are some of your favorites? Any secret recipes?


Brockton, MA(Zone 6a)

Compost, compost and more compost. A little lime and general purpose granular 10-10-10.
Fireplace ash for seedlings to help rooting when planted in the ground.
Jacks Classic 'Blossom booster' 10-30-20 for seedlings before they are planted in the ground at half strength every other watering.
Andy P

Southern, CT(Zone 6a)

I use Spray-N-Grow and Bill's fertillizer that came with it but I am adding Messenger & probably alfalfa tea too this year.

Guilford, CT(Zone 7a)

I began using the alfalfa meal tea 2 years ago. I apply the diluted tea every month or so - it has a wonderful effect on all plants, & does not interfere with blossoming or fruiting, like some fertilizers do. I like that it is all natural too - no chemicals - just nice nitrogen food! I place the used mush in the compost or around sturdy trees. (It can become moldy if placed too thickly.) I only use Miracle-Gro Bloom Booster when my Brugs are refusing to do their thing - and only once a season at that. I did get some llama dung last year in the early Spring, & it worked wonders for my Winter weary soil. Llama dung does not contain seeds, nor does it have to be aged.

Ottawa, KS(Zone 5b)

For outdoors I like Miracle-Gro Tomato Formula applied as a foliar spray and as a ground drench (fertigation). For indoors I like urea-free formulas like Peters Specialties African Violet Plant Food and Better-Gro Orchid Plus water soluble orchid food (my indoor vegies love them).

I guess you could say I am an organic gardener who "fell off the wagon" a few years ago (grin). I still make all the compost piles I can (four going now and a fifth under construction). But, shhh, I prime them with a few chemical stimulants.


This message was edited Apr 16, 2006 2:01 AM

Fairmont, WV(Zone 6a)

I'm new to gardening and still learning...but so far I'm a big fan of horse manure, well rotted (burned a couple of plants last year when I applied still-too-fresh horse poo). I have 3 big compost piles composed of manure, lawn trimmings, chopped leaves, and veggie kitchen scraps...they get nice and hot. :)


Rhinebeck, NY(Zone 5b)

whoa, these are such great ideas!!!!! I love how we can all share our special recipes.

I am going to get serious about my composting this year. I've always had little piles that really never got cooking, but This Is The Year (I always say "This is The Year" in my garden...I just told all my roses that yesterday, LOL)

I also just found a local horseowner who will gladly share her pile of manure...now if I can just get my 1951 Chevy pick up truck to make the trip over there without stalling, I might stand a chance to get some!

thanks, everyone! let's keep it going....


Northern, NJ(Zone 6b)

Besides compost I use fish emulsion and seaweed and maybe some greensand on roses.

Rhinebeck, NY(Zone 5b)

oh yes, I forgot...I do use greensand on my roses...but I have no idea why! lol

Kearny, NJ(Zone 7a)

Hey daisygrll: I too use the Espoma Plant-tone 5-3-3 100% Organic and have for a number of years ever since Feasey & Bestoff went out of business. I do however augment it in a 4-1-1 ratio, 4 parts Plant-tone and 1 part each Bone Meal and Kelp Meal. It works great both in ground and in all my Earthboxes and other self-watering pots.


Guilford, CT(Zone 7a)

We have 4-5 compost heaps going in chicken wire cages. Each year the piles are turned, all in a row - until the last pile is pure rich soil. It can be done within 3-4 years. Adding manure of any kind to your compost is a great way to enrich it! It also helps cook out any weed seeds. We have never needed any chemicals to help the compost age, but we are careful about adding too much grass clippings - they tend to mold, instead of breaking down. (just packs too densely) Compost is like gold to plants!

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