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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Homemade Tomato Feed/Fertilizer - 8 Options!

Finally getting some tomato plants in yesterday made me all dreamy and excited. I LOVE fresh, sweet, sun-ripened tomatoes. . .just about any way they can be used.

I have ten plants this year. . .two in hanging baskets and the rest in containers. Four are various cherry/small varieties (regular, purplish black, pear, and yellow) and the rest are a mix of hybrids and heirlooms. I can almost taste them now. . .tossed with some good olive oil, sea salt and fresh basil! YUM!

I'm hoping that I'll have enough to can this year, too, so I'm planning on feeding them like kings from the get-go. But with so many plants this year, I suddenly thought that I'd like to see if there were any home made tomateo feed/fertilizers that could help things along a bit.  Enter Google!

Some of these I already knew (and used) but some were new to me! Can't wait to see how they work! Well, some of them, anyway!  (There's one, in particular, I think I'll probably pass on.  Wonder if you can guess which one?)

Coffee

Ingredients:
  • Coffee Grounds or
  • Black Coffee
Method:
  • Either sprinkle coffee grounds around base of tomato plants as it grows (only 2-3 times) but not after beginning to fruit)
  • OR
  • Dilute black coffee (no cream!) and use to water plants every few weeks during the season

Urine

Ingredients:
  • Urine
Method:
  • Um, if you can stand this one, just use urine from non-sick family members to water your plants on occasion
  • Theoretically it's great for the plants and doesn't, um, affect the taste at all
  • (I'll let other people let me know how this one works!!)


Molasses

Ingredients:
  • 2 Cups, plus almost a Bucketful of Water
  • 1 Tablespoon of Molasses
Method:
  • Mix Molasses and 2 Cups HOT water
  • Mix until thoroughly combined
  • Add to bucket
  • Fill the rest of the bucket with cool water
  • Use to water your tomato plants


Compost Tea

Ingredients:
  • Bucket
  • Water
  • Handful of Organic Material (either compost or animal fertilizer)
Method:
  • Fill bucket with water
  • Add a handful of organic material
  • Stir ( a stick works well )
  • Leave in the sun for a few days to steep
  • Carefully water the base of your tomato plants (avoiding leaves)


Fish Tea

Ingredients:
  • Bucket
  • Water
  • Fish (six inches, or so)
Method:
  • Fill bucket with water
  • Add your fish
  • Leave in the sun for a few days to steep
  • Use to carefully water the base of your tomato plants (avoiding leaves)



Fish Tank Water

Ingredients:
  • Fish Tank Water! (shocking, huh?)
Method:
  • Save your water when you clean your fish tank
  • Carefully pour around base of tomato plants


Epsom Salts

Ingredients:
  • 2 Tablespoons Epsom Salts
Method:
  • Sprinkle two tablespoons Epsom Salts around the base of your tomato plants once or twice a season
  • Water as normal


Formal Mix

Ingredients:
  • 1 Cup Bone Meal
  • 1 Cup Fish Meal
  • 1 Cup Wood Ashes
  • 6 Eggshells, Toasted in the Oven, then Crushed
  • 1 Teaspoon Epsom Salts
Method:
  • Mix ingredients together in tightly lidded, labeled container
  • When you want to fertilize, add a couple tablespoons to the base of your plants
  • Water well


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