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Introduction to Fertilizers and Chemicals

Fertilizing doesn’t need to happen during the first month if the plant was purchased in a greenhouse. If the plant is a new seedling, wait a couple of weeks after sprouting to fertilize the plant. Beginning in the second month you can use just about any houseplant fertilizer for any plant. Watch for plant specific products, also learn about the N-P-K on the labels, this will help you to choose the right product.


As winter approaches you can slow down and even stop using fertilizers and start up again as spring occurs. Do not fertilize your plants after or approaching the first frost date around October. Also use winterizer for your lawn. Winterizer slowly releases the nutrients and feeds your lawn during the winter months.

All fertilizers on the market have these letters on their labels; N P K. Sometimes it is written in numbers such as 5-7-3.

N = Stands for Nitrogen.
Nitrogen helps make plants greener and helps them grow faster. Nitrogen in the soil can be depleted over time.

P = Stands for Phosphorus.
Phosphorous is good for root growth, disease resistance, seed and fruit growth, and for blooming and flowering.

K = Stands for Potash (or Potassium).
Potash can help with increasing root growth, drought resistance, and disease resistance. It is important for overall plant health.

This is very helpful when determining what type of food you need to purchase. Change to higher numbers in the spring, your plants will love it.
For anything that blooms or fruits, high phosphate numbers are best.
Like everything else…excess won’t help. Give the plant small amounts 1 – 2 times a month depending on the numbers. The higher the numbers, the less you are going to give to the plant!

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