Best Times of Year to Fertilize Plants
The best time to fertilize outdoor landscape plants is around the time they begin to grow actively. The worst time to fertilize outdoor landscape plants is at the end of their growing season. Flowerbeds and vegetable gardens are fertilized right before they are planted. Plants that give us fruit or flowers require more fertilizer because when we pick it off the plant we are taking away nutrients that need to be restored. We expect the most out of these plants, and fertilizers are very important to make that happen.
The best time to fertilize indoor plants is spring because that is when they do the most growing. Some plants that grow faster should be fertilized multiple times a year.
- For outdoor plants, there must be a ring of fresh soil before the fertilizer is applied. This is a good practice to always keep in order to get better results.
- It is important to remember that fertilizer is not food for plants, they make their own food through photosynthesis. Fertilizer is, however, more like a vitamin that helps boost levels and keeps the plant healthy.
- Dilute your fertilizer with water. It is best to under fertilize than to over fertilize.
- Fertilizers are made of all natural elements. The nutrients contained in fertilizers are found in nature.
Which Fertilizer To Use
There are organic fertilizers and chemical fertilizers. Solid, liquid, and organic. Chemical fertilizers are formulated with the right amount of micro and macro nutrients and may be best for your plant. There is no need to guess the right elements within.
The brand you use does not matter. What matters are the elements. There are three major elements needed for healthy plant growth. These include nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). These are all listed on fertilizer labels and most contain some other minor elements in them as well that plants need for growth. Nitrogen will help with healthy, green foliage. Phosphorus will help with good root development and improved flowering. Potassium will help build up nutrients for plants that have periods of time where they are not in full bloom.
How Often to Fertilize
For outdoor plants, the fertilization process is a bit more simple. The label on your fertilizer, regardless of which one you go with, will tell you the proper rate to apply and how often you should apply the product. Slow release fertilizers can work for months, so one time every growing season is all that is required. Soluble fertilizers are usually applied every two weeks. Granular fertilizers are usually applied every two months.
For indoor plants, the fertilization process is indeed a process. Premade fertilizers are the best ones to use. Fertilize indoor plants once a month when plants are flowering or growing. During the winter or the less active months, plants do not need to be fertilized.