Fertilize flowers and vegetables

Most flower and vegetable varieties have been selected and developed to do best with high fertility. I normally make a second fertilizer application about the first of August.

Many of the root and leaf vegetables are harvested by now and do not need more fertilizer. The longer growing ones like tomatoes, squash and especially corn can benefit from additional fertilizer. Corn uses a lot of nitrogen, so I usually feed it with lawn fertilizer.

I use a general purpose fertilizer such as a 12-12-12 or 16-16-16 for other flowers and vegetables. Organic fertilizers with smaller nutrient percentages also work fine.

I apply a coated slow release fertilizer such as Osmocote to my hanging baskets and other containers when they are planted. I like to make a second application about the middle of August to keep them growing until the end of the season. They can deteriorate quite rapidly if they run out of fertilizer.

Have you noticed that when hot weather comes the weeds seem to thrive and grow even faster at the same time other plants slow down? Most weeds have a different system of metabolism than most cultivated plants. They are programmed to grow and mature seed quickly, especially in hot weather. That is why when we neglect to remove weeds while they are small, they can completely overwhelm other plants in a short time.

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