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Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Kawartha Lakes Money Saving Gardening Fertilizer Tips!

Kawartha Muns Do Your Vegetables Need Fertilizer? How Much? 

 Did you know vegetables each have different nutritional needs? Your soil may not need extra fertilizer.
OMAFRA  has a website ONVegetables chock full of great vegetable growing tips, which sends out a monthly eNewsletter. While much  information is geared to farming, there are many great tips families can use for their garden plot as well. What vegetables have you had most success growing in Kawartha Lakes? Please share your gardening tips in the comments below.
Depending on the vegetables you are growing, we found out your soil may already have the nutrients your vegetables require, and additional fertilizer may not increase your yield. How can you know? Marion Paibomesai OMAFRA Vegetable Team shared important vegetable fertilizing tips from . Christoph Kessel, Horticulture Nutrition  – Program Lead on the importance of the letters on your soil test report.

Pay Attention To Those Little Letters!  

From HortMatters, Vol. 13, Issue 4
image OMAFRA ONVegetables Website BannerSoil test reports provide a rating for your reported nutrient levels. Those are the little letters beside the numbers in the columns;  L - Low, H - High,  HR -High Response,  or  NR - No Response. Don’t ignore these little letters; even before looking at the report’s recommendations, they provide a guide as to whether or not the crop will benefit from any additional fertilizer. These ratings depend on two things:
  1.  First - the nutrient’s concentration in your soil determined by the laboratory. This reported value is an estimate of the plant available nutrient and is usually reported in ppm -parts per million.
  2. Second- the crop you are growing.

Soil Test Example : Phosphorous

A soil test phosphorus of 28 ppm would be ranked as Very High (VH) or Rare Response (RR) for sweet corn but only Medium (M) or Medium Response (MR) for broccoli. At this phosphorus test level OMAF and MRA guidelines would be 20 kg P2O5/ha for sweet corn, but  140 for broccoli.

When Will Fertilizer Yeild Little ROI?

While rating letters used may differ between laboratory reports, the concept is the same: for nutrient test values ranked as very high or excessive, or listed as rare or no response categories, it is unlikely that the crop will respond to any added fertilizer. This can mean a lot to a fertilizer budget. The dollars spent on fertilizers for nutrients ranked very high or excessive, or rare or no response will probably not gain any more in yield or quality.
More information on soil test ratings can be found at: http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/facts/fert-rec-tables-toc.htm.

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