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Day 5-Basic Nutrient Requirements

Day 5-Basic Nutrient Requirements

Mary Smith |

Welcome to Day 5 of our series Grow Your Own Food in 100 Days or Less.


Actually, we had germination of the Early Scarlet Globe radish on Day 4 (3 days to germinate) but I'm sharing the update today.  Here's our video update for the day.  Today topic is Basic Nutrient Requirements to Grow Veggies

Basic Nutrient Requirements to Grow Veggies

Well-balanced soil in the vegetable garden will contain a mix of several important nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.  I call those the basics.  However, there are 12 essential nutrients that all plants require to grow.  Six of these are needed in larger amounts and are called macronutrients.  These include Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), Calcium (K), Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg) and Sulfur (S).  The other six are called micronutrients and they are iron, copper, zinc, boron, manganese and molybdenum.  While these are considered minor, there is nothing unimportant about them.

From an older post "Feeding Your Plants"

What does each nutrient do? 
In addition to other properties, Nitrogen helps plant foliage to grow strong. Phosphorous helps roots and flowers grow and develop. Potassium (Potash) is important for overall plant health.

We've grown HUGE, organic zucchini using our own recipe for Liquid Fertilizer!

Liquid Fertilizers are favored by most gardeners, regardless of what they are growing. We use our own DIY Liquid Fertilizer mix.  Most liquid fertilizers can be applied as a foliar feeding directly to the leaves, hand applied to secondary roots, and included in the water supply of drip or other irrigation systems.

Aside from cost(and it is not that much), liquid fertilizers have almost no downside. They include all the macronutrients  and micronutrients needed for good growth. In addition, because they are in a water soluble state, they can easily be absorbed by the plant.

Here's our video for our DIY Organic Liquid Fertilizer recipe

What do the Macronutrients do for plants?

Nitrogen (N)
Nitrogen is the fuel that makes plants go. It’s used to synthesize amino acids, proteins, chlorophyll, nucleic acids, and enzymes. Plants need more nitrogen than any other element. It’s the nutrient we most often have to apply.  Compost and manure are "free" ways to add nitrogen to your soil

Phosphorus (P)
Phosphorus is the nutrient responsible for plant rooting, flowering and fruiting.  Bone meal is one form of Phosporus that can be added to your garden soil.

Potassium (K)
Potassium is important to plant growth and development. Potassium helps: Plants grow faster, Use water better and be more drought resistant, Fight off disease, Grow stronger and even Produce more crops

Calcium (Ca)
Calcium helps to retain and transport other nutrients by providing strength and structure through its cell walls.  Oyster Shell is an easy option to add to your soil to increase calcium

Magnesium (Mg)
Helps activate plants enzymes and part of chlorophyll and photosynthesis. Magnesium works in conjunction with calcium

Sulfur (S)

Sulfur is essential for the production of protein and chlorophyll.


A great "all-in-one" is our Mary's Organic Plant Food or our Vegan Plant Food. From there, you can choose any "extras" you'd like to add such as Endo-Mycorrhizae, Micronized Azomite or Mountain Flower Root Boost.

Thank you for joining us for another day of Grow Your Own Food in 100 Days or Less.  If you have additional questions please send an email to mary@marysheirloomseeds.com

Happy Planting!


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