Just like people, plants require a steady supply of nutrients to grow and stay strong against threats like disease or weather. While fertilizing is an excellent way to add those nutrients into your soil, it’s not all you should be doing. For a garden that will truly thrive, know what nutrients your plants require and how you can use aggregate lime to promote healthy growth.
Your Guide to Nutrient-Rich Plants
What They Need
There are six essential nutrients that all plants need to grow. Three are found in typical garden fertilizers: nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Nitrogen, or nitrate, boosts chlorophyll production for healthy green leaves. Phosphorus encourages strong roots and flowers, which will help the plant withstand elemental stress such as extreme temperatures. Potassium helps the plant retain water, as well as strengthening it against disease and insects.
The three other supplemental nutrients are magnesium, sulfur, and calcium. Magnesium supports healthy green leaves. Sulfur encourages the production of enzymes, proteins, and amino acids. This, in turn, helps the plants fight disease and grow seeds for germination. Calcium boosts the plant’s ability to process nitrogen and grow well-developed cell walls, which are better suited to resist illness.
How to Boost Nutrient Distribution
Though you may fertilize your garden, those nutrients will not be effective for your plants if the soil is too acidic. In fact, it can become counterproductive—making the soil even more acidic over time. Most plants will grow best in soil between 6 to 7.5 on the pH scale. Anything below 6 pH becomes harmful. Instead, the best way to get plants the nutrients they need naturally is with aggregate lime. Lime is full of calcium, which will displace the hydrogen and aluminum that make the soil acidic. As this does its job, the nutrients will become more readily available in the soil. Use a coarse aggregate lime for sustained pH adjustment, or a finer version for faster, shorter-term results.
Whether it’s a personal garden or large-scale crops on your farm, moderate soil is key to healthy growth. Buy your aggregate lime at L.P. Stewart & Sons Inc. in Lincoln, NE. For more than 75 years, this team has been supplying the area with a full range of landscaping materials—including bulk sand and gravel—and services, ranging from pothole repair to acreage mowing. See these offerings on their website or call (402) 423-5676 with questions or to schedule delivery.