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Fertiliser - how much is too much?

Instruction on a recently bought general purpose fertiliser reads “use every two weeks” during the main growing season. Does that sound right to you? Will I not ruin my soil by over feeding?
I add some compost as well, but it is not practical to do it more than once a year as my quite shallow flower beds would just spill over, so I have to resort to chemical feed. 


  • Hampshire_HogHampshire_Hog Hampshire Coast 100m from the seaPosts: 1,089
    Why not start at every four weeks, if the plants look sad increase, if they look all leaf and no flower reduce it, the compost you add is it new self made, old spent stuff from pots etc or new bagged stuff ? each will make some difference.

    "You don't stop gardening because you get old, you get old because you stop gardening." - The Hampshire Hog
  • Kitty 2Kitty 2 ManchesterPosts: 5,150
    What type is it?  I'd expect a slow release granular feed to last longer than two weeks. If it's liquid or powder that you dilute in a watering can, once a month as HH suggests sounds about right.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 35,520
    Maybe I'm cynical, but they want you to use it more often, because then you'll have to buy it more often.  ;)
    If your ground's generally healthy, and plants are doing well, you shouldn't need to use food that often. Slow release food generally lasts for months, not weeks. It also dependson the  type of planting you have.
    Adding the compost every year will benefit the soil. If you use well rotted manure, that would be even better than just compost, or you could use a mixture. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 16,825
    If you put a liquid feed on your open ground you’re pretty much wasting it, the rain washes it through or the sun dries it out.  Liquids are best in containers, basket etc when a fortnightly feed is needed. 
    I learned that from GW mag years ago, can’t remember if it was Monty or Alan now. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • cornellycornelly Posts: 930
    Don't use fertilizers in the garden after planting, only at or before planting, in containers yes but even then slow release fertilizers do the job.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 16,825
    I don’t use any fertilisers ,  ever in my garden, I’m a believer in adding lots of compost as a soil improver, the soil will then manage itself. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 26,544
    " feed the soil: not the plant "
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 16,825
    That’s the way @Hostafan1. But then we both love compost making😀. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

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