Whether you buy your plants and flowers in a shop, or grow your own in your garden or greenhouse, you want to keep them healthy and fresh for as long as possible. There are many home remedies that you can use to keep your flowers and plant fresh. However, you may prefer to use something which was specially designed to care for your plants, in which case it is perfectly normal to go out and get some plant or flower food.
When it comes to purchasing plant or flower food, how exactly do you choose which one is right for you? With shelf after shelf offering you ‘the best’ fertiliser, each claiming to be the best value for money, how do you know which one is the one for you and your plants or flowers? These are the questions which will be answered in this article.
Before you purchase any plant or flower food, you need to determine the stage at which they are. Seedlings and newly sprouted plants and flowers will require more plant food than blooming or fully grown plants, since they are still growing and may not have had a fully developed stem that is strong and supportive.
The type of environment you are growing your flowers or plants in also play a big part in helping you determine the type of plant food that you need. To a professional, the environment would refer to the acidity or alkalinity of the medium in which you are growing your plants and flowers. There are specialised plant and flower foods which work best on flowers grown in acidic mediums, whereas others work best on flowers grown in alkaline mediums.
If your medium is unspecialised i.e. if the soil or medium is neither acid nor alkaline (which they most commonly are not), you can use an all-purpose plant or flower food.
If are unsure about the acidity or alkalinity of your medium, you can buy strips similar to those used by diabetics. Simply place them in the soil/compost and the strip will change colour according to the acidity or alkalinity of it (usually varying from red for acidic to green for neutral and blue for alkaline).
Some plant foods will work on flowers under certain conditions. These can vary from temperature, to the amount of sunlight that the flowers receive. Always read the back of the plant or flower food packaging to determine the perfect conditions under which your flowers will get the most from the plant or flower food.
If you are still confused about which plant or flower food is the best for you, you can always speak to a member of staff at the florist or department store. They will have an extensive knowledge of plants and plant food. They will be able to help you choose the right plant food and guide you on how to use it, when to use it, how often to use it etc. according to personalised conditions since instructions found on the packaging are generalised.
Buying plant or flower food has many advantages. These contain a large amount of nutrients that are needed by your plants to grow. Compost will contain nutrients on its own, so if you are growing your own plants in compost, you should know that your plant’s nutritional needs are covered for a while. However, it is your responsibility to keep adding more nutrients, since the ones already in the compost will be used up, especially by plants that are still growing and not fully developed.