By Jay Mclaren
I Have A Number Of New And Exciting Container Grown Vegetables That Have Not Done Well. The Leaves Are Not Strong And Green. The Fruit Is Mediocre. How Can I Make Them Strong Again?
Gardeners are enjoying vegetables grown in pots. This is a great way to have a few fresh vegetables without having to dig a garden. They can be very successful but take a little more attention then in ground grown vegetables.
The most fundamental issue is the soil. All plants need good rich soils. Vegetables need extra rich soil. Many of the bagged soils including potting soil, garden soil, topsoil, and others contain large quantities of organic materials. This organic product such as peat moss or compost is extremely high in organic matter but on its own may not have sufficient minerals for healthy plant growth. It is very important for the success of vegetables and flowers that plants get sufficient nutrients. These nutrients are found in mineral soils or as supplemental fertilizers. For plants growing in high organic soils it is important to feed plants well.
Of all the plants that we grow in containers, Tomatoes are the best to notify deficiencies by their leaf color. It is very common for Tomatoes to have pale green, yellow, or even purple leaves when the nutrient levels are low. Providing a balanced fertilizer as a granular mixed into the soil or as a liquid watered in will correct most nutrient deficiencies. Try a product such as 20-20-20 or 15-30-15 mixed in water and applied every five to ten days. The difference in plant growth will be outstanding. Within a week to ten days the green color will be restored and the plants will look better.
This feeding process can be accomplished also by mixing slow release fertilizer into the soil at the time of planting. Fertilizers are important also for crops other than Tomatoes such as Peppers, Lettuce, Swiss Chard, Cucumbers, and others.
The careful lookout for insects on pot grown vegetables is also important. Use a garden insecticide dust or a liquid spray to control insects all through the growing season.