Friday, April 8, 2016

As We Saw During The Great Pollen Dusting of March

By: Terry Beyer
As we saw during the great pollen dusting of March, spring has sprung in the low-country. The days are warmer, the rain is more regular, and nature is giving us a green thumbs up to break out our pots and seeds. For the novice planter (me), there are a lot of unknowns.

For example, 96% of a plants nutrients are Carbon, Oxygen, and Hydrogen. Any plant not planted on the moon can find these in abundance. Among the 4% remaining, the larger part is Nitrogen (N), Phosphorous (P), and Potassium (K). This is not as abundant in nature, but can be supplemented with fertilized dirt (potting soil). On the bag the NPK ratio will tell you the quantities of each element that is in the fertilizer.
Nitrogen, for green growth, is great for leafy vegetables. Phosphorous is for our fruits and flowering plants. It encourages healthy growth of the stems, buds, leaves and so on. Potassium is for the well-being of your plant. It encourages the plant’s immune system (they get bugs too), and plant metabolism. Think of it as a digestive aid for the daily meal of sun, water, and air. With this in mind (and hopefully armed with a better knowledge than I) try finding an NPK ratio that best fits what you are planting this spring.
The NPK ratio is only one of many factors to consider when doing spring potting and planting, but demystified, it at least makes sense. Take a look at what you're buying next time and hopefully this will see your green thumb do better than my grey one. Good luck and Happy Spring!



Post a Comment