Spring fertilization

Spring fertilization

Question: spring fertilization

I have several fruit trees from cherry trees, apple trees, pears, plums, apricots, naschi, I would like to know if in this period that the flowers are blooming what type of fertilizer should be used to improve the quality of the fruits, I await your response thanks.

Answer: spring fertilization

Dear Alberigo,

the fertilizers that we find on the market contain various mineral salts, which are necessary for plants for a correct, harmonious and healthy development; in fertilizer there are generally three macroelements, or three minerals that are used by plants in large quantities, and therefore are also contained in large quantities in the fertilizer.

The three elements are Nitrogen (N = Natrium), Phosphorus (P = Phosphorum), and Potassium (K = Kalium); on the bottles of fertilizer of any type, you can find the amount of such minerals contained in the fertilizer itself, in particular you find its concentration, expressed with three numbers; for example on the bottle of a universal fertilizer you will find something like: NPK 15:15:15, or even 15-15-15; this means that 15% of the fertilizer is made up of nitrogen, 15% of phosphorus and 15% of potassium. Later you will also see other symbols, type B (Boron), Mg (Magnesium), Fe (Iron), these are microelements, the plant needs them, but to a much lesser degree.

Nitrogen, also contained in large quantities in manure, is the macro-element fertilizer useful especially at the end of winter, because it is used by plants to produce new tissues and sprouts; Phosphorus, on the other hand, is the most useful element for improving the development of the root system, and therefore should be used in particular in late summer and autumn.

The most useful mineral for flowers and fruits is potassium (K), and in fact a good fertilizer for fruit or flowering plants should carry an inscription like this: NPK 15-20-30, i.e. it should contain about twice potassium compared to the amount of nitrogen.

I therefore advise you to look for a fertilizer that contains a good amount of potassium, avoiding universal fertilizers, because during flowering and fruiting the plants do not need as much nitrogen, this would therefore remain in the soil, later washed away by rain and watering, would continue towards the aquifers, rivers and the sea, becoming a strong source of pollution (we all remember, to give just one example, the problems of mucilage present in the Po delta, caused largely by nitrogen from crops, used in excessive quantities; its function as a fertilizer that stimulates sprouts and leaves production also works for algae).

In addition to potassium, very useful for fruit ripening, therefore to be used in the orchard and vegetable garden, a fertilizer rich in Magnesium (Mg), which works in conjunction with potassium, also improving the flavor, color and size of the fruit; I assure you that in the nursery you can find a fertilizer based on potassium and magnesium, to be used about a couple of times, during the fruiting period.

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