Feeding Seedlings - When And What To Fertilize Seedlings For Good Growth | Gardener Info

A bountiful harvest is the dream of every gardener. The task of increasing and stabilizing this figure year after year is of concern to everyone who grows their own seedlings without resorting to buying them from middlemen and specialized stores. Seedlings are often capricious, so the task of the gardener is to ensure a sufficient amount of nutrients during the active growth phase. Read in our material what fertilizers and at what interval to apply for good and active seedling growth without problems.

Fertilizer choice

  1. Fertilizer choice: Which preparation to give preference when buying
  2. Formulation
  3. Stypes and composition of seedling fertilizer
  4. Fertilizing seedlings at home
  5. Why do seedlings need Feeding
  6. Dosage and timing
  7. Feeding tomatoes
  8. Feeding peppers
  9. Feeding eggplants
  10. Feeding flower seedlings
  11. Feeding vegetable seedlings in the greenhouse: Types of plants, dosages and timing of fertilizers
  12. Dosages and timing of fertilizers for greenhouse seedlings (cucumbers, melons, watermelons, cabbage)
  13. Gardeners' and gardeners' mistakes in fertilizing seedlings
  14. Video on choosing fertilizers for fertilizing seedlings

Picking fertilizer: Which preparation to choose when buying

Fertilizers are mineral and organic substances that are necessary for the full development, growth and nutrition of plants. During the phase of young sprouts young seedlings are the most demanding for the presence of the spectrum of useful substances in the soil substrate, so the task of the grower: to provide them with the right level. There is a huge variety of fertilizers on the market. Let us find out what kind of fertilizers you can buy in the stores and in what form they are available. 

  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Form of manufacture

The solubility of fertilizers varies, it depends on the chemical properties of the ingredients that compose the final product. The bulk of the preparations sold are divided into the following groups according to the form of release from the manufacturing plants:

  • Granulated. These are fertilizers where the fine particles are assembled into voluminous pellets: sticks, balls, rhombuses, crystals, and so on. They are loose, hold their shape, and are easy to store. When applied to soil, they do not dissolve immediately and interact with the substrate more slowly, but the effect on plants is pronounced and prolonged. Minus - a high concentration of salts contained, which can cause burns and death of plants, if applied in large quantities. It is necessary to prepare the soil in advance when fertilizing the seedlings;
  • Powder. Fine fertilizers used during the vegetation period and the set of green mass of the plants. The collective name for such fertilizers was the name of the producing company, Powder Feeding;
  • Liquid. A convenient form for sprouts! Good for making compound fertilizers. You can usually adjust the desired concentration with plain water.
  • Suspensions. Fertilizers with a high concentration of mineral and organic matter. Most often complex, but also single-component or based on living algae (e.g. chlorella-based fertilizer). They are used for foliar feeding.
  • Fast soluble. The main solvent for these fertilizers is water, therefore this includes all single-component, water soluble stimulant fertilizers and some multi-component ones. Used for all types of fertilizers.
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
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Виды and composition of fertilizers for sprouts

The most common classification of modern fertilizers is by the origin of the chemical components of the composition. They can be organic, mineral (inorganic), complex. In addition, there are fertilizers based on folk remedies, which people have long  used and noticed the positive effect. However, it is not unreasonable, many methods really work and provide an additional influx of nutrients. Let us discuss each type of fertilizer in more detail with examples.

  1. Organic fertilizers. Contains substances of organic origin that are required by plants. Mostly animal or plant products - dung, peat, compost, silt, poultry manure, green fertilizers, household waste. Excellent for the preliminary preparation of seedling substrate;
  2. Mineral. These are substances of inorganic origin derived from minerals and minerals. They are processed and given the desired form, fraction (powder, granules and so on). There can be one-component and complex (for example, one drug contains both nitrogen and phosphorus). These include fertilizers containing phosphorus, sulfur, calcium, inorganic nitrogen, copper, potassium: ammophos, calcium sulfur, nitroammophoska, ammonium sulfate, sodium nitrate, azofaka, diammonium phosphate, copper sulfateand others.
  3. Native fertilizers. Many gardeners create their own fertilizer by trial and error, from whatever they can find to replenish the nutrients in their sprouts. These are bread starter, wood ash, milk whey, village milk, infusion of onion husks, ammonia alcohol, yeast.
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Подкормка Sprouts at home

Most often sprouts are grown before they are planted in the ground at home, \"on the windowsill.\" Not all crops have the same number and timing of fertilizers: peppers, for example, need potassium-containing fertilizers, and eggplants are good with organic fertilizers. But even if your seedlings have already had their first sprouts and are verdant on the window, and you only just remembered to apply fertilizer, there are characteristic external signs of a lack of nutrients in the seedlings.

Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Why sprouts need fertilizing

The appearance of sprouts is the most accurate way to know what the plants are missing. The fact is that the growth phase, which is when the seedlings are growing, is the most active phase. This is the phase of vegetative growth, when young plants form their main mass, there is a strengthening of conductive vessels, the laying of flower buds. In other words - thorough preparation for flowering and fruiting. The horticulturist's task is to help seedlings not to be deficient in basic micro- and macro-nutrients. Main signs of chemical element deficienciesindicating why seedlings need feeding:

  • Phosphorus deficiency. It can be recognized by the veins in the plant becoming purple. Note that it is possible that the seedling temperature is too low because phosphorus absorption slows down precisely at this ambient temperature;
  • Calcium deficiency. Calcium is distributed slowly throughout the plant, but if the new leaves are small, irregularly shaped, with bent edges or cracking along the conductive veins, the seedlings are deficient in this element;
  • Kalium deficiency.The evidence of potassium deficiency becomes noticeable by impaired water transport in the vessels, new leaves curl and old leaves become \"paper\". Brown burns may appear along the edge of the leaves;
  • Nitrogen deficiency. This is indicated by yellowing of the lower 1-2 pairs of leaves;
  • Lack of iron. Bright areas appear between conductive veins, young leaves also become light;
  • Copper deficiency. A deficiency of this element shows itself in leaf wilting, even if all care (watering, loosening, light regime) is correct.
Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Dosages and application times

For convenience, here are tables with schemes and application dosages of various fertilizers for popular seedlings: tomato, pepper, eggplant, flower and vegetable crops.

For example, Different species of cultivated plants need different amounts and quality of the fertilizer spectrum. Therefore you should not fertilize all of your seedlings with the same fertilizer schedule: this mistake can cause death of the seedlings.

Tomato fertilization

Tomatoes are capricious seedlings whose cultivation causes headaches for many gardeners. But with a practiced scheme and timely fertilization during active growth, problems with lack of nutrients can be avoided. Table with timing and dosage:

FertilizerTime of applicationFertilizer type and dosage
FirstAfter the first two seed leaves appearCalcium nitrate: 2 g per 1 liter water.
SecondA week after the first feedingEnergen: dilute with water to a faint yellow hue.
ThirdAfter the appearance of two pairs of true leavesSuperphosphate: 10 g per 1 liter of water (prepare solution with hot water, dilute 24 hours beforehand).
FourthA week after the third feedingCalcium nitrate (repeated): 2 g per 1 liter of water.
FifthAfter appearance of four pairs of true leavesSuperphosphate (repeated): 10 g per 1 liter of water (the solution is prepared from hot water, diluted one day in advance).
Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Feeding peppers

Perts, both hot and sweet, are quite an unpretentious crop. But to avoid elongation and yellowing of young leaves, it is necessary to make 3 obligatory fertilizers. The fertilizer spectrum and dosage of application are in the table:

FertilizerTime of applicationFertilizer type and dosage
FirstEarly 1-2 real leavesAmmonium nitrate: 0.5 g. Superphosphate: 3 g. Potassium fertilizer: 1 g. All three fertilizers are dissolved in a common container, the dosage is per 1 liter of water.
Second14 days after the first feedingAmmonium nitrate: 1 g. Superphosphate: 6 g. Potassium fertilizer: 2 g. All three fertilizers are dissolved in a common container, the dosage is per 1 liter of water.
ThirdFive days before planting in the groundKalium fertilizer: 6-8 g per 1 liter of water
Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
Alternative fertilization scheme for pepper sprouts

Feeding of eggplant

Eggplant is very sensitive to soil organic matter content, therefore this must be considered still during preplanting preparation of soil. The fertilization scheme for eggplant sprouts after sprouting and before planting is given in the table below.

FertilizerTime of applicationFertilizer type and dosage
FirstFirst sproutingWood ash: 20 g per 1 litre of water.
SecondAfter the first true leafUrea: 1 g per 1 L of water (apply to soil). \"Growth\" or \"Zircon\": the dosage is usually indicated on the product label. The average concentration is 1 ml per 10 L (0.1 ml per 1 L), and seedlings are sprayed with the working solution.
Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Flower seedling fertilization

Flower seedlings are diverse, but also need fertilizing before planting in the open air. These are mostly annuals and biennials. It is important just to remember that the basic elements should include: nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, as well as trace elements: copper, magnesium, iron, boron, zinc, chlorine. So you can use single-component fertilizers or ready-made complex fertilizers, available in specialized stores:

  • \"Biohumus\";
  • \"Agricola\";
  • \"Aquarin\";
  • \"Zdrazen\";
  • \"Krepush\";
  • \"Forte\";
  • \"Kristalon\" and others.
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Внимание! When buying compound fertiliser, be sure to check the application rates for the seedlings. They are usually listed on the package, but if there are no instructions, use the internet or a fertilizer guide.

Feeding vegetable seedlings in the greenhouse: Types of plants, dosages and timing

Cucumbers, melons, watermelons, cabbage can be listed as cultivated plants to be grown before planting in the open ground in the greenhouse. If you are growing tomatoes, peppers and eggplants in the greenhouse, you can safely use the dosage tables listed above.

Dosage and timing of fertilizer application for greenhouse seedlings (cucumbers, melons, watermelons, cabbage)

CropTime of applicationFertilizer type and dosage
Cucumbers, melons, watermelonsFirst fertilization - phase of two true leaves.   Second feeding 3-5 days before planting.  Ammonium nitrate: 10g; Mono-calium phosphate: 15g; Water: 10 liters (per feeding)
CabbageFirst feeding 10 days after pickling.       Second feeding 5-7 days before planting in the ground.Ammonized superphosphate: 40 g; Potassium sulfate: 10 g; Water: 10 L.     Ash: 40 g; Monocalium phosphate: 20 g; Water:10 L.
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Gardeners and gardeners mistakes in fertilizing seedlings

The seedlings grow quickly. There is little time from the first shoots to the true leaves, so don't miss the timing of fertilizing to avoid pulling and thinning young stems. Try to avoid the following fertilising mistakes:

  • If the soil is prepared in advance and fertiliser is already added to the substrate, do not rush to fertilise so as not to spoil the shoots. The immature root system may not be able to cope with the endless flow of useful substances, and the plants will die;
  • Do not water the fertilizer, do it strictly according to the schedule, usually for normal growth of seedlings fertilization is needed 2-3 times from planting to planting in the ground;
  • Carefully study the composition of the preparation and dosage. An overabundance of one ingredient in the preparation of a working solution can be fatal even for established plants.
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info
  • Feeding seedlings - when and what to fertilize seedlings for good growth | Gardener Info

Sprouts Fertilizer Selection Video

This helpful video clip helps you make the right choice of sprouts fertilizer. With tips from an experienced horticulturist, your seedlings will be strong, vigorous, and will enjoy a rich harvest and beautiful blooms. Join in the viewing!

A faithful strategy for caring for seedlings during the period of active growth from the appearance of the first sprouts includes adequate light, regular watering and fertilizing. Remember that nowadays there are special products on the fertilizer market labeled \"for seedlings\". In most cases, careful use of chemicals and careful study of the instructions before applying them to the substrate is the key to strong and actively growing young tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and flowers!

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