STEVE SOLOMON’S RECIPE
COMPLETE ORGANIC FERTILIZER (Covers approximately 9-10m sq)
*3kg (3 parts) Oil seed meal: Source of Nitrogen
500g (1/2 part) Ag Lime: Corrects Ph and supplies calcium. This is calcium carbonate and gypsum –calcium sulphate.
500g (1/2 part) Gypsum: Helps to improve the physical condition of heavy clay soils. Assists water penetration. Makes sure your plants can take up the calcium, makes the plants stronger.
*1 kg (1 part) Rock Phosphate: Also known as rock dust, high in nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (potash). The higher nitrogen levels are responsible for fast green growth. Phosphorus aids with root and flower development, while potassium provides for the plants overall health.
1/3 cup (1 cup in a 9kg mix) Potassium Sulphate: Most Tasmanian soils are a little short of Potassium, it makes your plants produce more flowers and fruits.
*500g (1/2 part) Kelp meal: Provides a wide range of micronutrients and growth regulators acting like plant vitamins. Amazingly this helps plants increase their resistance to cold, frost and other stresses.
Seaweed or kelp meal, has a chelating ability and helps to release locked-up minerals in garden soil. Its high potash content aids in the formation of carbohydrates, is necessary for protein synthesis, promotes early growth, improves stem strength, and contributes to cold hardiness. As if that weren’t enough, seaweed contains the hormones gibberellin and auxin, which function as growth enhancers. There are also beneficial vitamins, enzymes, and about 60 trace elements. A high alginic acid content combined with a low percentage of cellulose (the ingredient which gives land plants rigidity), causes its quick decomposition, facilitating its use as a compost accelerator. When applied directly to the soil, it stimulates soil bacteria, which increases fertility. Fresh seaweed should be rinsed well to remove any sea salt and then can be used as a top dressing. Kelp meal can be substituted at a rate of 1/4 cup per bush. Helps plants increase their resistance to cold/frost and other stresses.
Add extra Blood and bone during Winter
These trace elements prevent major deficiencies in your soil.
1 ½ ts Zinc Sulphate
1 ½ ts Manganese Sulphate
½ ts Copper Sulphate
1 ts Boron (or laundry Borax)
The above fertilizer recipe is a good complete fertilizer. I have been choosing also to consider Phil Nauta’s view and have been experimenting by composting and using kelp meal and rock phosphate. It is also good to add things like kelp and comfrey to your compost. Also adding gypsum to our heavy clay soils.
In my view, what we need to do is focus on a more holistic approach to soil management, such as creating high quality compost and using things like rock dust and seaweed in order to give the plants the chelated minerals they need.
And then the other important step is soil testing. A soil test will not only tell you your pH, but also which minerals need to be added back. It will rarely be dolomite lime.
When all of these factors are brought in line, the pH will follow.