Many people are gardening or landscaping lovers and want to practice these activities with a garden full of flowers or a balcony with dense vegetation. But, many times, no matter how much we care for our plants, it’s sometimes impossible for them to grow correctly. This can cause us frustration and lead us to neglect this great practice. But please, don’t get frustrated! Now, we are going to tell you how to make your plants grow faster.
What Causes Slow Plant Growth?
We have all had fatal starts when it comes to gardening. That’s why we want to show you what are the frequent problems that prevent or delay plant growth so that you can avoid them at all costs:
1. Lack Of Space
Often, when your buying plants, the pot doesn’t correspond to the size of the plant it has. This is why the plant grows to or is already at its largest size, which means that it can’t grow any bigger than that container allows.
2. Stress Because Of Transplanting
There are times when transplanting a plant stops its flowering and growth. This happens because the movement and change of habitat cause stress to the plant, and thus, it dedicates all its energy to stay alive. A plant makes survival a priority instead of growth!
As we all know, plants grow well during growing seasons, spring and summer, and depending on your climate, go into dormancy during winter and fall.
In winter, the plants go through their “maintenance process,” which is where they hardly grow or don’t grow at all, and their nutrient and water needs decrease because they are trying to conserve energy.
So, the lesson here is that you shouldn't worry if your plant looks good but doesn't grow, do not fill it with water and nutrients because you can cause a problem. Let the spring come and activate the plant again.
4. Lack Of Light
If a plant can’t photosynthesize, it can’t usually grow either.
It seems like an obvious problem, but sometimes growers think that pests or plant abnormalities are the reason behind it if, for example, it only affects a part of the plant.
5. Lack Or Excess Of Water
This problem is usually due to excess water. If you see that the plant is rotting or its leaves begin to turn brown or lose strength, its roots may be drowning, or the plant isn’t getting enough water.
It's essential to water, especially your houseplants or greenhouse plants, because, unlike your outdoor plants, they don't get water anywhere else other than the water you provide.
6. Lack Of Nutrients
When you’re growing plants, remember that they will have nutrients only for a specific amount of time. So, when the time comes, you’ll have to apply some fast-dissolving liquid fertilizer or a slowly dissolving solid one.
Other problems can also prevent plants from absorbing food correctly, and these problems are usually related to soil pH.
How To Speed Up Plant Growth?
The simple answer to this question is to provide enough nutrients, optimal temperature, humidity, and proper light conditions.
You also have to know the specific care needs of each plant species and pay attention to their condition every day so you can see that they don’t experience waterlogging issues, pests, or sunburns, among others.
It is normal that when we notice our plants are not growing as they should, we start to worry, but there are tricks to speed up their growth, and here is a couple of them.
1. Substrate Drainage
It’s necessary to choose a suitable substrate to have good drainage and thus avoid flooding.
Plants with too much water stop growing, get sick, and their leaves and stems can turn dark and wilt. This is why it’s necessary to transplant or change the soil or substrate if you begin to notice your plant looks decayed and the soil is moist, even though the top of it is dry. To detect this, it’s necessary to touch further inside to check its humidity level.
Some plants need a light substrate with good drainage, and some need more humid soil. The best thing to do in this situation is to research what soil the plant you are growing needs. If you can’t find the answer from our site, this is where a specialized gardening store can help you.
It’s best to prune your plants as soon as they finish flowering or when they get a disease, burn, or you detect pest-infested parts. It’s necessary to prune them so that they can recover from the stress that was caused by those situations and can continue to grow.
When there are few flowers left to fall and no buds, it’s the perfect time to prune correctly and help them be healthy.
With the help of pruning shears, cut the branches or stems near the central stem without touching it. If only part of the branch or stem has gone bad, just cut behind a healthy knot, leaving part of the branch or stem untouched so that it can continue to grow.
3. Optimal Humidity, Temperature, And Natural Light
Ensure that your plant is in a place that meets all the conditions it needs to grow optimally. Because the better conditions you provide, the better results you will have with its growth and appearance.
Plants need soil with nutrients to grow. Especially when your growing in a pot, it’s necessary to provide extra nutrients since the ground can’t renew naturally, nor will it accumulate any waste that will help improve its composition. This is why we have to use natural fertilizers.
To grow best, plants need space, so keeping them in a pot that’s too small is not a good idea. The more room the plant has, the better for its growth.
If you notice that the plant has outgrown the pot, the best time to transplant them is to wait for their flowering cycle to finish or early spring when plants are still in their dormant period. Of course, it’s always best to grow in your garden ground where the plant roots have all the space they need.
What Liquid Fertilizers Make Plants Grow Faster?
Liquid fertilizers are all substances in their liquid state and contain a fair amount of one or more elements necessary to assimilate by plants. These essential elements are:
The lack of this nutrient limits the growth of the plant roots. It also causes the fall of the fruits and causes small and discolored leaves, among others.
The lack of phosphorus causes plants to form a strange coloration in their leaves and delays their growth.
Without potassium, the plant increases its resistance to diseases, but it also causes the plant to have underdeveloped roots and weak stems.
So, What Should It Contain To Make My Plants Prosper?
As a general rule, to make your plants grow faster with the help of liquid fertilizers, make sure that they contain at least these three nutrients, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. But this isn't that simple.
We all know that plants also need other macronutrients and micronutrients to grow well. For example, many growers know that carrots can suffer from boron deficiency and that apples and broccoli need calcium.
The bottom line is that plants will need many other nutrients than just nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, and you need to find out what fertilizers will help you get a fruitful harvest.
What Are The Main Things A Plant Needs To Grow?
It’s always good to remember that plants have basic needs, just like humans and animals. When you keep this in mind, you can ensure that they will survive and develop optimally. Ok, let’s see what you need to provide your plants:
The plant absorbs the nutrients it needs through a water solution. This means that if the plant can’t get water, it can’t absorb these nutrients. In other words, the plant will die.
So, a plant will need water, but the water also needs to contain something so the plant will grow. This is where nutrients come into play. Even though all nutrients are essential for plant growth, the ones you should especially keep an eye on are phosphorus, nitrogen, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur.
Light is essential for plant growth because light, with the help of other elements, makes sure that the plant can photosynthesize. This process is where plants take in carbon dioxide and produce the oxygen we breathe.
How To Fertilize Your Plants?
Depending on the type of fertilizer your using, let’s have a look at their correct way of usage:
1. Organic Fertilizers (Including Compost And Mulch)
Organic fertilizers are, as the name implies, made of organic matter. Examples of such types include horse, sheep, and cow manure or plant matter like green manure.
Organic fertilizers have one excellent feature, which is also a reason to use them. They can improve the structure and texture of the soil, increasing its ability to retain water but still making it loose enough for plant roots to develop properly.
– How And When To Use Organic Fertilizers?
Depending on what point of growth you are applying the fertilizer, you can spread it on top of the ground or mix it. For example, mixing it to the ground is a great idea when you haven’t planted anything yet. And spreading it is preferable when you need to fertilize during the growing season.
Growers usually use compost between October and the winter months, taking advantage of the tilling work. But it’s also a great idea to use it in the spring at the beginning of the growing season.
– When Growing In Planters And Pots
When you grow your plants in pots, the plants can’t get nutrients anywhere other than the soil. This is why you need to add the fertilizers at the time of planting. A great way to do this is to place a little bit of soil at the bottom of the pot, add fertilizer or compost, and then place the plant into the pot.
– When Planting Shrubs And Trees
When planting trees or shrubs in your garden, dig a hole for them, add organic matter to the spot, place the tree/shrub in it, and fill the rest of the hole with nutritious soil. You can also add some mulch around the plant to ensure that the ground will retain moisture and the weeds won’t grow too close to the plant.
2. Granular Fertilizers (Including Organic And Inorganic Ones)
Granular fertilizers are usually spread on top of the soil, and the moisture in the ground or the help from rain will make them dissolve into the soil.
– How And When To Apply Granular Fertilizers?
As noted, granular fertilizers are usually spread on the land’s surface, and growers let the soil moisture or rain dissolve them. Or, if you want, and I recommend you to do it, you can also spread some soil on top of them to help them dissolve faster.
3. Liquid Fertilizers (Including Organic And Inorganic Ones)
Liquid fertilizers work faster than granulated and even organic ones and are mainly applied diluted in irrigation water.
– How, And When To Apply Liquid Fertilizers?
According to the plant and its cycle, growers usually use liquid fertilizers every 7 to 20 days during the growing season.
Liquid fertilizers are also excellent for potted plants because there won’t be a massive risk of overuse.
How To Make Homemade Fertilizer?
There are many ways to make homemade fertilizers for your indoor and outdoor plants.
Even though you can buy fertilizers from many places these days, the cheapest way is to make one yourself. This is because we all have 100% natural ingredients in our home that provide extra nutrients to the soil.
Since ancient times, people have used homemade fertilizers, but many growers don’t even consider making it themselves when they can go and buy synthetic ones. But even though, synthetic fertilizers provide rapid nutrition to the soil, they can have adverse effects in the long term.
Although plants don't distinguish between one type of fertilizer and another, synthetic ones still create imbalances. Not only do they decrease the presence of "good" microbes, but they can also kill earthworms because of their ammonia.
Ok, do you have a pen and paper? Let’s learn how to make homemade fertilizer!
1. Banana Peels
Banana peels are one of the best organic ingredients for composting, thanks to their potassium content, one of the essential nutrients for plants after nitrogen. You can throw the peels into the soil or make compost out of them, but turning them into so-called tea is also an option that we will discuss next.
How To Make Fertilizer From Banana Peels?
Cut the banana peels into strips and boil them in water for at least 15 minutes. After this, let it rest. When the water isn’t hot anymore, sprinkle the fertilizer around the plant, and you can also leave the peels in there if you want.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
The acetic acid in apple cider vinegar helps fertilize plants that love acid, and I recommend you only use this fertilizer for those kinds of plants.
How To Make Apple Cider Vinegar Fertilizer?
For this, you only need to mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with water that you will use to water the plants. Also, it’s helpful to repeat its application at least once a month.
When making organic fertilizer with eggshells, we usually use other natural ingredients.
But, you can also use eggshells. They contain a lot of calcium and prevent a disease called “blossom-end rot” that bothers, especially peppers, aubergines, and tomatoes.
How To Make Fertilizer From Eggshells?
To fertilize your plants with eggshells, you have to crush the shells and place them at the bottom of your plantations.
Another way is to dry the shells and then turn them into powder with the help of a grinder. After that, apply the powder around the plant.
Don’t worry when you notice that your plants aren’t growing. There is usually an easy solution to that. You only have to detect the problem that is causing it and fix it as quickly as possible!
So, how to make your plants grow faster? It’s simple, give your plants what they need; enough sunlight, fertile soil, and water them when needed. It’s also important to fertilize them during the growing season by making homemade fertilizers or buying one from a reliable source.
But another trick to use is to choose plant varieties that grow fast. Thankfully you can find this info when buying the seeds, so don’t forget to take that into account as well.
Featured image credit – Yeexin Richelle/Shutterstock.com