Best Flower Fertilizers For Your Garden


Authored by Jayant Row in Gardening
Published on 05-09-2009

Flowers are living things, and like all living things need to be given something to eat. This is the role that fertilizers play in the development of flowers. So you need the right recipe to make sure that your flowers stay healthy and show the right results.

Fertilizer is plant food and contains the three nutrients that are a must for the plants to survive and grow. These three nutrients are Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium. Nitrogen helps green growth, phosphorus develops strong roots and strengthens the flower and potassium improves the general health of the plant. In addition plants also need minerals like calcium, sulfur and magnesium to give the plants additional vigor. Micro nutrients required are Boron, Manganese, Iron, Zinc, Copper and Molybdenum.

Fertilizer bags will generally have a number. For instance a 5-10-20 number would indicate 5% of nitrogen, 10% of phosphorus and 20% of potassium. Plant growth is controlled by the scarcest resource in the fertilizer and only by increasing the limiting nutrient can a plant or flower show increased growth or any difference in its health.

For flowers the best fertilizer is considered to be a fertilizer with the NPK (Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium) numbers as 10-10-17. Potassium has a special relationship to flowers and ensures that they bloom more frequently. Potassium is easily reduced from the soil if there is rain or you water the plants too much. So you would have to be careful to see that your flowering plants are always getting their potassium. The more potassium there is the better your flowers would bloom. It is best to use a fertilizer that has time release, as this way the potassium is released over time. See that the percentage of nitrogen is not too high compared to potassium as other wise the flowers would become vegetative. For better flowers, see if you can get a fertilizer with magnesium. This will help the foliage and the flower.

Fertilizers are available in three forms: Granular, Water soluble or Organic. Granular fertilizers are the most common and are easily available in the time release and can last in the soil for up to 9 months. Water soluble fertilizers dissolve easily in water and get absorbed very easily buy the flowering plant. They would need reapplication every 15 days or so. Organic fertilizers contain bone meal and manure. They have lower nutrient levels than the synthetic variety of fertilizers, but their natural affinity for soils and plants does ensure good growth.

Soil pH levels are very important to good growth and the best results are obtained when pH levels are between 6 and 6.8. It is advisable to get your soil tested in a local laboratory and assess the pH levels. You can then correct the pH level if necessary. A pH level less than 7 means that the soil is acidic. Your soil could do with a dose of lime to balance the pH level. A pH level above 7 tells you that the soil is alkaline and this can be balanced by adding sulfur or gypsum. The application of fertilizer is also governed by the nature of the soil. Clayey soils tend to hold up movement of water and hence can deny proper nutrients to your flowering plants. Sandy soils on the contrary may allow the water and fertilizer to leach out quickly. You can overcome this problem by using time release fertilizers.


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