Whether it’s made from plain weeds, vegetable scraps, or manure, homemade liquid fertilizers can give your plants the natural quick boost of nutrients they require in order to be more productive. Try to learn how to break the habit of using costly commercial fertilizers by growing the vegetable garden you have always dreamed of with these techniques.
- Compost Tea. Like manure tea, this one also offers a number of the same benefits; only that it relies on compost as the main source of plant nutrients. You can mix up one by pouring two cups of high-quality, live compost in a burlap bag then adding two tablespoons of molasses as well as two tablespoons of sea kelp poweder. Soak the compost in five gallons of water for a few days; stirring on a daily basis.
- Manure Tea. Manure tea is considered as one of the oldest forms of organic liquid fertilizers. It has been found to be excellent in providing plants a healthy dose of nitrogen and in boosting up the soil’s microbes. Make one by placing a shovelful of composted chicken or cow manure in a burlap bag, along with two tablespoons of sea kelp powder and two tablespoons of unsulphured molasses. Put the bag in a bucket filled with 5-gallon water, and let the manure steep for about one week; stirring occasionally. Remove the bag then compost the manure. After this, pour the compost tea into a hand sprayer or a watering can.
- Liquid Kelp. Although this doesn’t contain the essential nutrients (i.e. nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus) often found in most fertilizers, liquid kelp, nevertheless, has growth hormones. It is rather costly but it’s been found to be extremely helpful in terms of boosting slow plant growth as well as in encouraging recovery after damage caused by severe wind or hail. Just mix one or two tablespoons of liquid kelp with one gallon of water then apply it as a foliar spray.
- Enzymatically Digested Hydrolized Liquid Fish. Most fish emulsion products add micronutrients that help plant development but have a strong smell. With enzymatically digested hydrolyzed liquid fish, you get to spend a little bit more but you don’t have to deal with the stench. More importantly, it offers more nutrients as compared to standard fish emulsions. Just combine five tablespoons of liquid fish with one gallon of water, then apply the mix as a foliar spray or to the ground directly.
Tips in Applying Liquid Fertilizers
- Foliar sprays tend to be most useful during the critical periods such as during fruit setting or after transplanting as we extreme temperatures like drought.
- Any sprayer/mister will work; just avoid using those of which have already been used to apply herbicides.
- Early morning and early evening are the best times to spray as these are when the liquids will not burn the foliage and will be absorbed by the plants most quickly.
- Spray your plants with the aforementioned organic liquid fertilizers until it drips off the leaves. Just concentrate on the leaves’ undersides as these are where the leaf pores are more likely to be open.
- You can also water in the liquid fertilizers around the root zone.