home made bulb food?

gretaTNSeptember 13, 2004

Is there such a thing as a recipe for this?

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I don't know of any--have you posted this question in the Bulb Forum?

    Bookmark   September 17, 2004 at 4:22PM
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Well you can use less expensive organic fertilizers purchased from a feed store or horse store, like alfafa meal, rock phosphate or bone meal, blood meal, feather meal, granite meal, kelp meal, fish meal, chicken manure, etc. and put them together to create your own mix. If you read the labels of those more expensive premixed organic fertilizers, this is basically what they are. Some are very inexpensive like alfafa meal is 6 for 40lbs at my feed store. Call ahead because some stores may not have what you want in stock, but may be happy to price it out and order it for you. Since organic fertilizers tend to release nutrients slowly, they're economical and easy to use: Feed once for a several month effective period (depending again on what you use.) Peaceful Valley Farm Supply (eee.groworganic.com, I believe,) has a handy organic fertilizer 'chart' in PDF form on their website, which tells you how long on average it takes for various organic fertilizers to release nutrients through biological action, and what their ratings are for NPK.

If you don't want to go organic, just get a balanced (10-10-10 or 10-15-10,) granular fertilizer that is a generic fertilizer and use sparingly by feeding once in the fall (during root formation,) once when you see bulb foliage breaking through the soil, and once when they're flowering. Make sure you add an inch of compost at least twice a year, and you should be ok. (If your soil is in especially poor condition, then it might need much more compost, etc. You can get your soil tested at a local agricultural extension site for minimal cost and its worth it to do, because you don't want to waste money or time providing nutrients that already exist or are balanced in your soil. And adding more of those minerals or nutrients can actually lock em up and cause problems.)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2004 at 4:08PM
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I was interested in organic gardening back when people thought you were a little ditsy! I bought Rodale's first Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening (1971). Under bulbs they recomend:

Bone meal applied at 5-6 lbs per hundred square feet.

Other ingredients to use would be: cottonseed meal, dried blood, tankage and wood ashes.

Then under the fertilizer heading:

Tulips: Planting: Mix in 5 lbs bone meal and five lbs. dried manure per 100 bulbs used. Keep nitrogen fertilizers low. In fall, double the amount of fertilizers used at planting.

Hope this gives you some ideas.

I think they have a new edition of this book. You might check it out.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2004 at 6:45PM
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