Live Better
 
 

Keep your garden flourishing and healthy. Here's your simple guide to fertilising.

It is incredibly important that you fertilise your garden at the right times of year to ensure that your garden stays healthy and productive. Plants need a number of nutrients to grow well, and different plants will need different amounts and types of fertiliser.

If you prefer to use organic fertilisers like animal manures (and we certainly recommend that you do), research what is best for your vegetables. Blood and bone is a slow-release fertiliser; cow manures provide great organic matter but lower ratios of nutrients; sheep and poultry manures are more condensed as they are usually provided in pellet form, which is also a good slow-release option (they are too strong when fresh).

There are also liquid fertilisers, either commercially produced or your own liquid fertiliser teas (nettle and comfrey are good fertilising teas). Nearly all will need to be diluted before application as they can be really strong.

For this activity you will first need to decide on which plants you are fertilising, which fertiliser you should use and what quantities are required.

Equipment

Who’s doing the shopping?

Send the shopping list straight to their inbox.

What to do

  • 1. Read the instructions on your fertiliser, or if it is an organic fertiliser like animal manure decide how much you need to apply per square metre. Work out how to measure this.

  • 2. Pelletised and granular fertilisers, including pelletised chicken and sheep manure:

    • Always use gloves when applying fertiliser.
    • Work out how much to apply by weighing out the recommended dose per square metre.
    • Then work out how many handfuls this equates to.
    • Gently and evenly scatter the correct number of handfuls of fertiliser over the surface of the soil of the first square metre.
    • Try not to leave the fertiliser sitting too close to the stems of plants, or on the leaves of plants that might be touching the ground, as it could burn them.
    • Repeat for all the square metre areas in your garden bed.
    • Water the area well.
  • 3. Manures:

    • Always use gloves when applying fertiliser.
    • Using a garden fork, gradually spread the manure over the surface of the garden bed to a depth of about 5 cm.
    • Try not to leave the manure sitting too close to the stems of plants, or on the leaves of plants that might be touching the ground, as it could burn them.
  • 4. Liquid fertilisers and homemade fertiliser teas:

    • Measure the amount of liquid tea you require into a measuring jug and pour it into the watering can.
    • Dilute with water to the recommended amount.
    • Apply to the ground around the drip line of the plants.
  • Latest Articles

    Healthy Kids

    Potato tortilla recipe

    A delicious, classic Spanish inspired dish.

    Read more
    Healthy Kids

    Pita bread recipe

    Perfect with curries, dips or as a snack.

    Read more
    Healthy Kids

    Broad bean salad

    A simple salad in a few easy steps.

    Read more
    Healthy Kids

    Vegetable gyoza recipe

    Transport the family with these Asian flavours.

    Read more
    Healthy Kids

    Aioli recipe

    Make this aioli using a food processor or by hand.

    Read more
    Healthy Kids

    Plant a picking patch

    What will you pant? Dill, chives and lettuces of all sorts.

    Read more
    Healthy Kids

    Propagation: softwood cuttings

    A guide to growing new plants for free.

    Read more
    Healthy Kids

    Wicking box

    Create your own self-watering planters.

    Read more
    youtubeui-checkbox-tickui-checkbox-emptyui-checkbox-crosstwitterui-checkbox-tickWellbeing and mindfulness 1Physical Health 1Positive psychology 101 1Wellbeing and mindfulness 4All about gut health 1Understanding Genetics 4Planning for Pregnancy 2During Pregnancy 3The mind-gut connection 4The mind-gut connection 1New Parents 3Page 1Group 10During Pregnancy 2Page 1Physical Health 2Planning for Pregnancy 1Positive psychology 101 1Positive psychology 101 4Planning for Pregnancy 4Understanding Genetics 1Physical Health 4Planning for Pregnancy 3Nutrition 4New Parents 1New Parents 3 CopyMovement for your mind 4Wellbeing and mindfulness 2Nutrition 2sob-icon__mind-bodysob-icon__man-with-laptopAll about gut health 2Positive psychology 101 3Positive psychology 101 2Physical Health 3Wellbeing and mindfulness 3All about gut health 3genetics-changing-what-your-givenUnderstanding Genetics 2During Pregnancy 1Movement for your mind 2Movement for your mind 1Movement for your mind 3During Pregnancy 4