The summer heat is setting the fruits of our labor in the garden. Now that you’ve planted, watered, and weeded around your veggies… what next? This time of year, plants like cucurbits (members of the gourd family such as melon, pumpkin, squash, and cucumber) could use a little nitrogen and potassium boost to ensure healthy supportive plant growth after flowering. While growth studies show that while phosphorus is important for flowering and fruiting, it’s most effective when applied before planting.
PLANTING: When initially placing your vegetable transplants in the ground, a good balanced fertilizer is needed for healthy plant development. A balanced, OMRI certified slow feeder like Bio-Live 5-4-2, or our All Purpose Mix 4-6-2 is a great way to start your veggies on the right path for success.
SUPPLEMENT: A couple amendments we would recommend to help add nitrogen to your plants is our DTE Fish Powder 12-1-1, which is a professional grade, water soluble, nitrogen fertilizer derived from fish. It is produced through careful enzymatic hydrolysis to provide maximum nutrient availability and plant uptake. For vegan gardeners, or those who prefer all plant based inputs, Agmino 14-0-0 is another highly effective amendment designed to provide a rapid burst of plant available nitrogen. Agmino is produced through an enzymatic hydrolysis of non-gmo soy protein, to provide ample amino acid content and 14% water soluble nitrogen.
HEALTH AND STRESS: KelPlex Soluble Seaweed Extract is an excellent source of potassium, hormones, and trace minerals. It can be used throughout the growing season to decrease the negative effects of plant stress, as well as maximize plant growth and vigor- not only in your cucurbits, but in all types of crops.
CALCIUM: Another thing you can do for general plant health is consider applying calcium to the soil before planting with Oyster Shell, which breaks down slowly in the soil. It not only provides calcium, but can help improve soil structure and tilth. Plants like tomatoes and peppers benefit from applications of calcium to help prevent issues like blossom end rot. We carry Liquid Calcium and CalMag used as a foliar application to help correct or prevent calcium deficiencies during the growing season.