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Old April 30, 2015   #1
tnkrer
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Default kelp fertilizer recommendation

I have been using tomato tone fertilizer strip in the container and adding liquid fertilizer (foliage pro) to the water reservoir mid-season. This has worked very well for my tomatoes. It has worked somewhat OK for peppers and cukes.
So I have been reading about kelp and/or fish emulsion as fertilizer that helps plants grow stronger.
So what option would you recommend if you have used kelp and/or fish
1. Use Kelp + fish. It does work wonders!
2. Use just kelp. Its probably as good as kelp + fish and does do wonders.
3. Save your money, its not going to make big change! (I am close to blowing off my budget for this year's garden, so I like this one )

I was looking at this kelp4less product
https://www.kelp4less.com/shop/liqui...ed-fertilizer/
It seems cheap, but don't know if kelp extract is same everywhere or the costlier brands (neptune etc) are actually better ..

Thanks
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Old April 30, 2015   #2
RayR
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If I only had to choose one, I choose:
1. Use Kelp + fish. It does work wonders!
I think the fertilizing and growth promoting properties of Fish Hydrolysate and Ascophyllum Nodosum compliment themselves nicely.

I've been thinking about trying this one this year:
GS Plant Foods Fish & Kelp Blend Free Shipping too.

I do use kelp extracts alone also.
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Old April 30, 2015   #3
Tapout
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Personally I use

1. Neptune Harvests Hydrolyzed Fish Fertilizer 2-4-1
2. Neptune Harvests Seaweed Plant Food 0-0-1

In conjunction with other various products. Using this type of fertilizer gives me peace of mind knowing that i'm using a natural organic product.
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Old May 1, 2015   #4
Gardeneer
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I have NEVER used any of those things and have been growing all kinds of tomatoes, peppers..etc satisfactorily, just by using manures and synthetic fertilizer.

Convince me that there is an advantage using kelp , fish and other like neptune,...
Does it make a significant improvement in productivity ? Or in other areas ?

I am open for suggestions .
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Old May 1, 2015   #5
BigVanVader
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To each his own I say. This link explains very nicely how microbes in the soil function and are affected by different approaches to soil management. http://organiclifestyles.tamu.edu/so...robeindex.html

FAQ #5 addresses the organic vs chemical debate and how it affects the soil, which in short is that long term it can lead to acidification and fungal problems but can be managed with yearly soil test and lime application to maintain an acceptable PH. In my view I would rather just add organic amendments and ferts because it is easier to manage and more sustainable. As most things it comes down to doing your research and making a intelligent decision based on your unique situation.

This is my first year using Fish emulsion/kelp so the jury is still out. It did help save some sickly seedlings. I will also be doing my own experiment with it on my in ground plants this year to see if it makes enough of a difference in production to justify the cost/time/labor involved in buying/using it. Like my first boss used to say, you never know what you look like till you get your picture took!
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Old May 1, 2015   #6
Tracydr
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Kelp really seems to bring something special,especially if a plant is struggling from disease or insects. Fish emulsion is such a gently yet very quick shot of energy drink for the plant. I mix both together in a big bucket,pitcher or sprayer. I spray all the leaves and drench the soil with it.
Also, if I need to use neem oil or spinosad, I add a little kelp to that spray,too.
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Old May 1, 2015   #7
tnkrer
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Gardner .. may be raybo will do a mythbuster series on kelp and/or fish. I started using biota max and micogrow after reading his and Ami's posts.

BigVanVader - I plan to use kelp/fish mostly for my container growing. For my in ground growing - I am trying cofee grounds, composted horse manure etc.

Thanks for your input Tracydr.

So question for you container growers ..
Can this be added to the water reservoir and will it wick up to the grow media? or do I need to drench the grow media with diluted fertilizer? Fish emulsion or kelp extract seems like would be small particles in water and not really dissolved in water. So I am afraid that they will not wick through the soil. Experiences? Thoughts?

Ray, Thanks for that link. Did you find that product through google? or word of mouth?
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Old May 1, 2015   #8
Lindalana
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I believe our bodies like wholesome nutritious components better and will choose it over taking it in a synthetic vitamin form. Just works that way. Mother nature created foxglove with preventatives- one can eat it but it will cause nausea and vomiting before damage to heart rate is done. While if you take digoxin, common enough medicine, derivative from foxglove- it has no stops, and will cause digoxin toxicity easily.
Was world happy adding chemicals to the soil that produced better growth and yields? For sure. Is current agriculture has to use more and more pesticides and insecticides because balance is not there? Should world stop and ask what weeds are for? Why there are insects? I sure hope those questions will be more and more on people mind.
So we all going down to answering how are we comfortable using GMO products,genetically engineered seeds, and what you consider safe for your house and where do you want to be with your soil in a decade etc.
My personal goals is to have high brix numbers for food I grow. My goal is to have healthy soil. I follow biological gardening model. It does not make me a better person, those are just choices I am comfortable with.
As for kelp- I use Neptune liquid products although I am not sure if it any different from the rest but it is a quality company. I do think their fish hydrolysate is better because it does not use heat for extraction so more good stuff survives. I have used dry kelp sold for animal consumption in bags.
Container gardening is different from the soil so I defer to Tania presentation on container growing and follow her mixes. One can find it on Tania main page under presentations and workshops.
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Old May 1, 2015   #9
carolyn137
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tapout View Post
Personally I use

1. Neptune Harvests Hydrolyzed Fish Fertilizer 2-4-1
2. Neptune Harvests Seaweed Plant Food 0-0-1

In conjunction with other various products. Using this type of fertilizer gives me peace of mind knowing that i'm using a natural organic product.
I agree that Neptune's Harvest products are THE best and they are based in MA as well.

I used to use both as foliar sprays when I couldn't get near enough to the base of the plants to use granular fertilizer, and also late in the season when the plants were almost ready to close shop for the season.

And no, I'm not biased about this company, I almost forgot to say that they use cold processing for their products which preserves the micronutrients, not biased at all, but it is the place where a local friend ultimately got seeds for........tada,
Neves Azorean Red and gave them to me.

http://tatianastomatobase.com/wiki/Neves_Azorean_Red

And God Bless Charlie Perry, a local retired Phys Ed teacher, who participated in an adult education course I was asked to teach, yes, about heirloom tomatoes, for giving me those seeds.

I gave Charlie lots of seeds for many varieties. Each Memorial day there is a village wide sale with many vendors selling this and that and Charlie would sell plants from a table in front of his home.

Another friend said she had bought three of his plants and I asked which varieties and she said.....yellow, red and pink. I couldn't stop laughing.

Carolyn
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Old May 1, 2015   #10
RayR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnkrer View Post
So question for you container growers ..
Can this be added to the water reservoir and will it wick up to the grow media? or do I need to drench the grow media with diluted fertilizer? Fish emulsion or kelp extract seems like would be small particles in water and not really dissolved in water. So I am afraid that they will not wick through the soil. Experiences? Thoughts?

Ray, Thanks for that link. Did you find that product through google? or word of mouth?
Can't speak for SWC's since I don't have any but I can't see why it would not wick up. It's not like there are little fish parts floating around in it, they screen the fish hydrolysate and emulsions to remove any solids. I think they use the solids to make fish meal.

Kelp extracts likewise are very soluble.

I ran into GS Plant Foods years ago on the Web, there's a ton of companies out there selling fish and kelp products. I tried a number of them and they basically very similar, some differences in minimum NPK analysis, mostly P because many add phosphoric acid as a stabilizer. Fish emulsions are higher in N because they are cooked down, therefore the N is more concentrated by weight.
The problem with NPK and organics in North America is that it is based on available NPK like in synthetic fertilizers instead of total NPK analysis like the Europeans use. Manufactures sometimes purposely understate minimum NPK to avoid drawn out battles between the lab results of the Federal and the individual state lab results and the analysis by private testing labs that the manufacturer provides the authorities.
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Old May 11, 2015   #11
tnkrer
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Bought GS Kelp + Fish fertilizer, Will report how that works out.

A BIG CAUTIONARY WARNING: I suspect that the fertilizer releases some gas during transit. That had the jug under high pressure. I was obviously not aware of this and when I opened the jug, the gas exploded out of the seal and the lid hit my palm hard. (6 hours ago and the palm is still hurting)

I am not sure how to deal with it though I am going to let the owners know about this flaw.
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Old May 11, 2015   #12
bughunter99
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I too use the Neptunes products and have not found anything better. I prefer their fish/seaweed blend. Organic, Great stuff. Seems pricey but not really as a little goes a long way. It is gentle enough that you can apply it directly to the leaves or to the soil very regularly and your soil will stay happy.

Few quick tips.

1. Only mix as much as you will use. Don't store it.
2. Dilute per its recommendations, there is zero need to use the concentrated stuff without dilution.
3. Don't use it inside unless your house already stinks.
4. Don't spray your garden with it 2 hours before the next door neighbor is having a graduation party.
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Old May 12, 2015   #13
Gardeneer
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I was checking on Alaska Fish Fertilizer ( 5-1-1), at HD website.
It is ~$13.50 per gallon. I also read some reviews. The majority commented on its smell, even in the backyard. Hmmm.

The price is OK, but I am thinking about the smell issue.
And my question is :
WHAT IS ITS ADVANTAGE OTHER THAN BEING ORGANIC ?

I have nothing against those who choose to grow organically. To Each His Own.
But is there any benefit in it other than just being ORGANIC ?
I know that in addition to (5-1-1) it also has Ca, Mg , S, .. an some other trace elements as well.

Thanks
Gardeneer
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Old May 12, 2015   #14
MissS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gardeneer View Post
And my question is :
WHAT IS ITS ADVANTAGE OTHER THAN BEING ORGANIC ?

I have nothing against those who choose to grow organically. To Each His Own.
But is there any benefit in it other than just being ORGANIC ?
I know that in addition to (5-1-1) it also has Ca, Mg , S, .. an some other trace elements as well.

Thanks
Gardeneer
The single best advantage is TASTE. The bottom line for me is taste. When I used Miracle Grow, sure my plants seemed fine and produced well, but when I went organic, well the taste from the same varieties was just amazing. I will never use MG or similar products again in the gardens. Each year the taste gets better and better.

Give it a try.........
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Old May 12, 2015   #15
Gerardo
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If cost is a concern and you still want to get the benefits of kelp, you can also just take about a bucket's worth of washed seaweed (free), add dechlorinated water, a little sugar, and then just let it sit, and sit, and sit.

Mine's been going for about 5 mos and it works just fine.

Stir if you like, but it's not necessary. The smell gets sublime. Dilute it 1:10 (drench) or 1:20 (Foliar spray). They will stand at attention quick!

I use it mostly for my alfalfa/worm/kelp tea.

And I agree with MissS, taste is where one can detect it. Then again, that's the most subjective part. Who knows.
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