Confused gardener

Discussions on fertilizers, Plant Food and Composts Etc

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Muhammad Arif Khan
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Confused gardener

Post by Muhammad Arif Khan » August 30th, 2013, 3:09 pm

FERTILISATION

An old subject I am yet not clear about.

BASED ON COMPOSITION OF PLANTS; plants use 13-19 parts of P or an average of about 16 parts for every 100 parts of N, or 6 times more N than P. Plants use about 45-80 parts of K or an average of about 62 parts for every 100 parts of N, or about 3/5 as much K as N, and so on.,
So logically the NPK requirement of a plant is 56-9-35, say 11-2-7.

But the NPK ratio recommended/used for various plants is;
Amaryllis, Hedco = 2-1-2, Heinie, = 2-1-3, Hans (Germany) = 4-3-6
Gerbera 1-2-4
Annuals 1-2-1
Citrus,Grapes 1-1-1
Papaya 12-15-10

ROSES 4-3-2
For roses Rafiq, used fortnightly light sprinkling of NP with deep water =1-1-0, I think now he is using 1-1-1.
Umar Khan; Ideal fertilizer for roses is N P K with 1-2-1 ratio. but you can also feed with NPK 20-20-20(1-1-1).
Muhammad Umer; i am using foliar NPK 5 15 45 (1-3-9), on about 40 roses, excellent results.
aykhan » February 22nd, 2013, 12:38 pm
This year I have been more vigilant regarding fertilizing my roses. I gave them DAP ( 18-46-0) in winter, then some Epsom and NPK foliar and I'm thinking this week i ll give them a dose of Potash (0-0-46). Eager I see if this effort gives results.

HAYE MAIN KITHAY JAWAN. (WHAT SHOULD I DO)?
Confused
Arif

Farhan Ahmed
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Re: Confused gardener

Post by Farhan Ahmed » August 30th, 2013, 4:35 pm

Before experts reply :P
hmmm. Well for annuals Only.
I feed them with love, more than fertilizer and it seems to work. One/two time party with cow dung do not upset their stomach :P

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by mikhurram » August 30th, 2013, 5:22 pm

Sir for Rose food use the Arthur Bowers Rose Fertlizer which has NPK as 5-5-10 plus trace elements. This is available at Pride Seeds. The 3 kg packing can be bought for Rs 2200 which is cheaper than the I kg packing of Rose Fertlizer by Vitax available at Chanan Din Seeds for Rs 1500. I have been using the Arthur Bowers Rose food for my roses and the i am satisfied with the results. Pictures of my roses can be seen in my subsection under the post "Roses in Lahore". Since this fertlizer has been formulated especially for roses you won't need to use any other products.

For my vines and bulbs i tend to use the Arthur Bower Liquid Tomato Fertlizer whose Ingredients are NPK 4 - 4 - 8 + trace elements, seaweed extract and wetting agent. This is also available for Rs 800 or 900 at Pride Seeds. The Tomato Fertlizer is often recommended by experts for using them for Vines and bulbs in particular Amaryllis. I have used it and would recommend using it.

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by Farhan Ahmed » August 30th, 2013, 10:07 pm

How much area does this 3 Kg packet cover or plants??? What is per serving?

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by Heinie » August 31st, 2013, 1:57 am

No need to be confused because we all live and learn from each other. Here is my opinion of fertilizer I use.

Any flowering or fruit bearing plant need at least double the amount of K (Potassium) to one part N (Nitrogen) and P (Phosphorus) is not very necessary because the plant's roots should be well established if it is in a position to bear flowers or fruit. A very good general fertilizer to use for flowering and fruit bearing plants is something like Phostrogen N14:P7:K27 +trace elements. This boils down to a N2:P1:K2 which is perfect. I use an additional fertilizer of N13:P0:K46 to foliar feed my mature flowering Clivias because the ideal combination is some Nitrogen with Potassium to produce good strong flowers and fruit.

Do not stare blind at NPK only because any plant needs certain Macro Elements and certain Micro Elements. The NPK falls within the Macro Elements as well as a macro element that is often overlooked:
Calcium (Ca) which is responsible for the structural stability of the plant tissue and for efficient cell division and the building of strong cells. Calcium also assists the plant to take up nutrition efficiently. I feed Calcium separately once a month to assist in the building of strong hard leaves for my Clivias and
Magnesium (Mg) as the central atom of chlorophyll (leaf green) it is of particular importance in the process of photosynthesis. It also promotes the absorption and translocation of phosphorus.

Some Micro Elements needed by plants for various reasons are:

Boron(B) Promotes the formation of protein and is important for flower, seed and fruit formation. It also enables plants to become resistant to diseases of many types.
Iron(Fe) Acts as a catalyst in the photosynthesis and respiration process, and is essential for the formation of sugars and starches.
Copper(Cu) Participates in the production of carbohydrates and proteins via photosynthesis.
Oxygen (O) A constituent of many organic compounds. It is essential in the anion exchange between roots and the growing medium. You may recall my piece I wrote in another topic of the translocation of Oxygen through water to the roots.

I hope this will give you a good idea of what fertilizer is necessary for plants to flourish for us. They need food as much as we do. If you treat your plants well they will return the favour but the opposite is also true.

Seedlings need a different category of fertilizer. I use a N20:P1:K3 + micro elements. A high quantity of Nitrogen (N) is necessary for strong and vigorous leaf growth. Phosphorus (P) is also necessary in fairly high quantities for strong root growth. Potassium (K) is only needed in smaller quantities because the seedling is not at a flowering stage yet.
Regards
Heinie

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by Muhammad Arif Khan » August 31st, 2013, 11:17 am

Farhan Ahmed wrote:How much area does this 3 Kg packet cover or plants??? What is per serving?
About 400 Sq Ft, at the rate of 40gm N / 100 Sq Ft, am I correct.
The Vitex fertiliser is 5.3-7.5-10

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by mikhurram » August 31st, 2013, 1:36 pm

Some slight correction the price of 1 Kg Rose Fertlizer at Chanan Din is Rs 1200 not Rs 1500.

Farhan i usually give 1 teaspoon of Rose fertilizer powder to each established rose plants in a circle a few inches away from the stem and then apply water immediately after a gentle fork. Weight of 1 teaspoon would be 5 g hence 3 kg ought to be sufficient for 600 roses roughly. Around 525 roses I believe would be more likely.

Below are the usage instruction on the Arthur Bower's Rose fertilizer pack.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
“J. Arthur Bower’s Rose Food contains Extra magnesium is included for richer, greener leaves. J. Arthur Bower’s Rose Food is also suitable for feeding trees and shrubs.

Before Planting
Sprinkle 135g per sq m (4 oz per sq yd) over the planting area.
Fork well in.

Established Roses
Sprinkle 135g per sq m (4 oz per sq yd) evenly over the soil
Lightly fork or hoe in.
This is best done in mid-March or at the first sign of leaf growth.
Apply 70 g per sq m (2 oz per sq yd) in the same way at monthly intervals through the summer.

Planting Patio Containers
Mix 28g (1 oz) with two or three handfuls of compost or soil.
Fill bottom third of pot with mixture, position the rose and top up with compost or soil

Care of Container Grown Roses
Sprinkle 20g around the rose (about a level tablespoon).
Lightly fork in.”
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hence we might as well opt for a specialized rose fertlizer food for roses.


For other established plants, shrubs even freshly planting annual seedlings a common mistake in my opinion we often make is applying too much of fresh cow manure which having high nitrogen and bacteria count would encourage soft and sappy growth of stem/leaves and also make the plants more susceptible to fungal diseases, weeds and attract pests. Rather than applying solely applying of cow manure perhaps it would be better to apply less of cow manure and apply greater % of leaf mold.

We can agree on a point that we have to avoid the application of excessive nitrogen food which is high in cow manure.

Instead, we apply can apply the high Potash tomato liquid fertilizer feed once during the month when the plant is in growth stage to encourage flowering and fruiting as well as toughen foliage. Tomato fertilizer would ideally serve the purpose and can also be applied on flowering and fruiting crops like cucumbers, peppers etc. Plus the Tomato fertlizer has trace elements mentioned by Mr. Heinie as well as Seaweed or Kelp to boost the immunity of a plant.

Further we can test the actual level of NPK in the soil by using the soil kit available at Chanan Din for around Rs 550. i bought a soil kit today to be monitor the NPK in container pots.

For fresh planted plants we can either go for a more expensive sterilized bone meal fertilizer or apply a 1 teaspoon of Super phosphate at the base of the pot and then cover it with soil taking care that the bulb or plant doesn’t come into contact with the Superphosphate granules. The Super-Phosphate would be a more cost effective solution if we are consider using an imported bone meal. However the bone meal fertlizer which acts like a slow release fertlizer which Mr. Heinie also uses can become cost effective by buying local bone meal processed in factories near Lahore. The only thing we would have to ensure that the local bone meal should be sterilized.


For Citrus I was checking some of the articles archive. It was mentioned in one of the articles that
“Citrus often has shallow roots so it is important to spread the fertilizer thinly and water in promptly if the weather is dry so it doesn’t burn the sensitive surface roots. Nitrogen is the key. Apply fertilizer to each tree-the amount you use will depend on the brand your are using and the size of the tree or add organic products as such compost mixed with sheep to feed the plant. Magnesium deficiency is another cause of leaf yellowing. Treat with a foliar spray or liquid fertilizer.”

Hence for Citrus we can apply initially a fertilizer containing high nitrogen and later on replace with a high potassium fertilizer like Tomato Fertlizer until the fruit ripen.

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by Syed Adnan » August 31st, 2013, 3:57 pm

I recommend testing the soil first and then decide the fertilizer accordingly.

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by Muhammad Arif Khan » August 31st, 2013, 5:48 pm

Hello Imran
Ref.your post of 31st
Established Roses
Sprinkle 135g per sq m (4 oz per sq yd) evenly over the soil
lightly fork or hoe in.
This is best done in mid-March or at the first sign of leaf growth.
Apply 70 g per sq m (2 oz per sq yd) in the same way at monthly intervals through the summer.(Recommended)

For a rose bed of 5X20 feet you require 1.35Kg for initial application and 0.7Kg every month through the summer

If you were to plant them at 2 feet interval you will have 20 rose plants in the bed.
Three Kg is not enough for a bed of 20 roses per year (simple math)

Farhan i usually give 1 teaspoon of Rose fertilizer powder to each established rose plants in a circle a few inches away from the stem and then apply water immediately after a gentle fork. Weight of 1 teaspoon would be 5 g hence 3 kg ought to be sufficient for 600 roses roughly. Around 525 roses I believe would be more likely. Mikhuram

Imran are you kidding?

Even in a pot you require;
Care of Container Grown Roses
Sprinkle 20g around the rose (about a level tablespoon).
Lightly fork in (as recommended).
Which is one time application to 150 plants and not to 600.

PLEASE DO NOT CONFUSE ALREADY CONFUSED OLD MAN.
Arif

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Re: Confused gardener

Post by Muhammad Arif Khan » August 31st, 2013, 6:06 pm

Syed Adnan wrote:I recommend testing the soil first and then decide the fertilizer accordingly.
what is the ideal NPK parts per million?

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