Banana peels are rich in potassium, and they degrade fairly quickly. Additionally, they don’t produce a nasty odor, and they can help repel pests. If you grow roses, add banana peels into the soil near the base of the plant. Banana peels are full of minerals that roses need. As the peels break down because of worms and microorganisms in the soil, they will deliver nutrients right to the roots of your roses.
A healthy rose plant bears more blossoms and roses fed on banana peels flourish, producing beautiful flowers that last longer.
Coffee doesn't just help jumpstart your morning. If you have coffee grounds left over, set them aside to dry. Dried coffee grounds add magnesium, nitrogen and potassium to your garden, which are nutrients your plants need to grow well. Acid-loving plants like azaleas, blueberry bushes, roses and tomatoes will benefit from coffee grounds used as fertilizer.
If you live in an area with alkaline soil, spread coffee grounds in your garden to change the soil pH. Note that since coffee grounds can change the pH of your soil, this may affect plants that require a delicately balanced fertilizer. Alternatively, you can mix coffee grounds into your compost pile and let them decompose along with grass clippings, potato peels and other materials.
Eggshells are full of calcium that your plants need. After cooking eggs, wash out the shells and let them dry. Rinsing eggshells ensure that they don't attract animals to your compost pile. Break the shells into smaller pieces and add them to the ground when planting tomatoes. Alternatively, you can add crushed eggshells around the base of already planted tomatoes since they require more calcium than other plants.
You can also use eggshells as an organic way of controlling snails and slugs. Crush up the eggshells but make sure the pieces are bigger than those you would add to garden soil. Sprinkle the crushed shells around plants like hostas that often attract snails and slugs. Eggshells will act like diatomaceous earth, killing or repelling the slugs and snails without any harsh chemicals.
Burying fish scraps in garden soil can help boost its nutrient content. If you filet a fish, save the bones and scraps once you're done cooking. You can puree the bones and scraps with water and milk to produce a strong fertilizing mixture.
If you have an aquarium, don’t dump the water down the drain when it's time to clean it. Discarded fish tank water can be used to hydrate garden beds and potted plants. Fish waste in the water provides vitamins to the plants without requiring any additional work.
If you have powdered milk that's past its expiration date, don’t throw it away. Mix one part milk with four parts water.
The mixture contains calcium, proteins, sugars and vitamin B that can help boost the overall health of your plants. Plants that seem stunted may benefit from a powdered milk mixture. Milk also helps with blossom end rot and diseased pepper plants, squash and tomatoes.
If you don't drink coffee, you can still use tea bags as a natural fertilizer because they offer similar benefits to the soil as coffee grounds.
To fertilize garden soil with tea bags, remove the tea grounds from the bags and allow them to dry before application. According to gardeners, tea grounds are particularly beneficial for tomatoes.
If you have a wood stove or fireplace in your homestead, you have a free source of fertilizer. Wood ash helps add calcium carbonate and potassium to garden soil. Keep in mind that you shouldn't use wood ash if you already added other things on this list to your garden soil. Wood ash increases soil pH, so don’t use it if your soil is alkaline.
Finally, wood ash can also help keep slugs away from your plants.
Save money and grow healthy, chemical-free plants in your home garden by using nutrient-rich household items like banana peels or eggshells as natural fertilizers.
Visit HomeGardeningNews.com to read more articles with tips on caring for your crops using non-toxic household items.