Your plants are looking great. They’re a deep lush green and have more foliage than you know what to do with, but beautiful leaves are not really what you’re looking for, are they? As gardeners what we’re really after are bountiful harvests.
To achieve this, you must move away from your nitrogen heavy fertilizer and start using bloom boosters! A bloom booster is a generic term for any fertilizer that is high in phosphorus. When reading your fertilizer labels, it’s the second number listed.
When a plant transitions into the reproductive stage its nutrient requirements change from heavier nitrogen to heavier phosphorus. Phosphorus should be applied right before flower formation and throughout the entire rest of the season. This will ensure plentiful flower sites, good fruit set, and plenty to harvest!
There are several great organic options out there such as bone meal and high phosphorous guano. These products are generally going to have lower numbers and be slightly slower acting, but you avoid any potential damage to your plants or your soil. If you need to blast your plants, you may consider mineral salt fertilizers. You’ll find high numbers like 20%, 30%, or even 50% phosphorus in these fertilizers. Although using mineral salt boosters may seem appealing, be careful, it’s easy to over dose your plants and that can cause big problems, such as leaf burn, yellowing, etc.
Whatever method you choose it’s always a good idea to start your plants off with a light dose and adjust from there. If you fertilize too heavily, you will know it. Your plants will burn, growth may stunt and they generally will look sad. Paying regular attention to the plants is the real key to a successful garden. So get out there and spend some time with your plants. When you notice the first signs of flowers starting to form you will know what to do!