Chemical Fertilizers For The Garden
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Chemical fertilizers when applied at the right time and in the right quantity, go a long way in promoting healthy growth of plants. In addition, they also provide resistance to plants against various diseases and help in the growth of roots and seeds.

Components Of Chemical Fertilizers

Garden fertilizers essentially contain nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. The numbers 10-10-10 or 10-20-10 etc on the fertilizer bag refer to the percentage of each of these chemicals in the fertilizer.

Nitrogen promotes leaf growth in plants and helps them in producing greener, lush leaves. Phosphorus boosts fruit development and strengthens the root system of a plant. Potassium provides resistance to plants, thereby strengthening them. It also affects the color and size of flowers.

Application

Chemical fertilizers for the garden are available in two forms- granular and water soluble. The granular one should be is sprinkled on the soil and worked in with a tiller or hand tool. And the water soluble type should be mixed with water and fed to the plants either by sprinkling onto its leaves or as part of the watering process, in which the plant takes in the nutrients systemically (through the roots).

The timing and amount of application is extremely important. A pplication at the wrong time or over application, can lead to excessive foliage, delayed flowering or plant death due to excess of fertilizer salts around the roots, causing leaf and root burn. You must read and follow the product recommendations for fertilizers or any other garden chemicals carefully.

Soil Testing

Before applying any fertilizers you must test the garden soil for the adequacy or inadequacy of nutrients. You can do this either by using a relatively inexpensive, home soil testing kit or by sending a soil sample to your local soil testing laboratory. The test will reveal the level of nutrients already in the soil as well as the ph balance of the soil. Select a chemical fertilizer accordingly best results.