One question people want to know is how long does blood meal last in soil. You’ve probably heard about blood meal is beneficial to plants. Perhaps, you’re interested in using it as fertilizer. But maybe, you’re a little bothered by how it’s going to bear positive results.
It’s one thing to have the nutrients available in the soil. It’s another thing how fast they get released for the plant’s consumption. Fertilizers vary in terms of how long they stay in the soil. Some are slow-released while others are readily available. If you’re interested in blood meal, consider these factors.
What is Blood Meal for Plants?
Blood meal is an organic fertilizer that’s made out of dried animal blood coming from slaughterhouses. It has an NPK ratio of 12.5-1.5-0.6. It’s all-natural, a safe choice for sustainable gardeners.
How Long Does Blood Meal Last In Soil?- Factors to Consider
Blood Meal is a slow-release fertilizer that can last around 2 to 6 weeks in soil. In powder or granular form and in varying sizes, Amazon has a wide variety of options for blood meal products like Jobe’s Organic Blood Meal Soil Amendment. To know how long does blood meal last in soil, we have to consider many factors:
- Type of Organic Material
Depending on the materials used, natural fertilizers take time to decompose. Blood meal has a different decomposition length compared to compost, manure, bone meal, or vegetable scraps. They vary in their composition and complexities.
- Type of Microbes
Once applied to the soil, the microbes present will have to feed on blood meal first. They break down complex compounds into consumable forms. This process helps the nutrients become available to the plants.
The release of nutrients is dependent on the efficiency of the decomposers. The amount and nature of microbes present is a factor. Fungi, bacteria, earthworms, and other feeding organisms work together to make this happen.
- Type of Environment
The efficacy of decomposers is also affected by its environment including temperature, moisture level, soil pH, aeration, and carbon to nitrogen ratio. Providing these ideal conditions will hasten the breaking down process. You may need to do some adjustments before applying the blood meal.
Apply blood meal 2 weeks before planting. This technique gives enough time for the microbes to make nutrients available in time for planting. Also, blood meal has a very high nitrogen content that it can burn the plants when mismanaged. The advanced application makes the concentration tolerable.
Reapply every 2 months to ensure a continuous supply of nutrients especially on the vegetative stage of plants.
Blood Meal Application Rate
Apply 1 cup per 20 square feet of soil. Excessive application is detrimental. Too much nitrogen causes dehydration because of the salts it leaves behind in the plant, burning it. Other effects include susceptibility to diseases and insects. Flowering and fruit set are also compromised.
As a slow-release organic fertilizer, blood meal lasts in the soil approximately from 2 to 6 weeks. Results may take a while to show but it surely does its job. Proper use and management lead to healthier and productive plants.
What Plants Benefit From Blood Meal?
The plants that benefit from blood meal are plants that are heavy nitrogen feeders. They include cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, radishes, lettuce, corn, and squash. Cruciferous vegetables such as kale, broccoli, spinach, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts are also included.
Basically, nitrogen is one of the most unstable nutrients in the soil; therefore, if your plants are deficient in nitrogen, blood meal application will be a good solution.
However, some plants should avoid blood meal application. Plants such as legumes already have roots nodules with bacteria that can fix nitrogen from the atmosphere.
How Long Does It Take For Blood Meal To Work?
Blood meal is a quick organic remedy to nitrogen deficiencies in plants. It is always readily available to plants and highly soluble. However, if used inappropriately, especially to young plants, it can burn and injure your plant roots and plant tissues. This is because of the decomposition that takes place in the soil on the addition of blood meal.
Decomposition will determine how fast blood meal works. The soil bacteria which are responsible for the decomposition and making blood meal available will act by breaking down ammonia. These soil bacteria in addition to warm and damp conditions encourage this fast action. And this fast action may be pretty harmful.
Therefore, ensure you follow instructions and do not exceed the recommended quantity given on blood meal labels.
Can I Mix Blood Meal With Water?
If you are wondering if you can mix blood meal with water, then you should know that most blood meals are highly soluble. Therefore you can mix blood meal with water. However, read the instructions on the label to know if should mix blood meal with water.
Can You Sprinkle Bone Meal On Top Of Soil?
You can sprinkle bone meal evenly on top of the soil. Ensure you also mix to incorporate it well into the soil after sprinkling bone meal on top of your soil. When there is dry weather when sprinkling bone meal, water in thoroughly so it can work into the soil.
Again, if you wish to apply bone meal fertilizer all through its growing season, make sure you sprinkle uniformly on top of the established areas of the soil. You should as well tenderly work it into the soil and minding the root of the plants as you do this.
For applying bone meals on top of established plant soils with containers, sprinkle some bone meal at the beginning of the season. You can then sprinkle again once or twice all through the growing season. This will enhance flowering or encourage fruit ripening as your plants develop.
Is Blood Meal Slow Release?
Slow release or fast release of blood meal fertilizer actually depends on soil temperatures. It is a slow-release when the soil temperatures are moderate or low. However, it is fast releasing in warm temperature. Also, the blood meal will be fast-acting in soggy or damp soil.
Always have in mind that fast action of blood meal which results in the release of more nitrogen can be harmful to your plants.