Ash as fertilizer and not only
Ash is used by gardeners and gardeners as a mineral fertilizer. It is popular with lovers of natural gifts of nature, who perceive the negative impact on human health of various chemical growth accelerators and means to increase yields. Suffice it to say that ash contains trace elements in the form that is most acceptable for assimilation by plants. Potassium, manganese, phosphorus, calcium are found in optimal proportions in ash obtained from burning straw. But not only these raw materials are used for the production of natural fertilizers. If straw is not available, then firewood of coniferous or deciduous trees, birch is used.
Why feed garden crops with ash? What are its benefits for cultivated plants? What diseases are they fighting with ash and what pests are afraid of it? We have to deal with these and other questions.
Ash as a stimulant in preparing seeds for planting
By preparing an infusion from straw or wood ash, you can get a liquid with minerals dissolved in it. To do this, soak 2 tablespoons in a liter of water and leave to infuse for 2 days. After that, the solution is filtered and used to soak the seeds (they are left in the infusion for 3-6 hours, then they are removed and dried) and feeding the seedlings or indoor plants.
Ash as fertilizer
Ash is applied under all plants, except for carrots. Her plantings are very demanding on the soil, and such fertilization will be superfluous for them. An infusion is prepared from the ash, and then the earth is watered around the plants or sprayed on them. Ash can be added directly to the soil by burying it at a shallow depth.
Ash for onions. Ash is used to feed crops.
Ash for eggplant and pepper. Ash is added to the seedling soil mixture, it is assigned the role of organic feeding. In addition, in cool and rainy summers, peppers and eggplants become sensitive to a lack of potassium and require the introduction of fertilizers containing this trace element. Ash is scattered under the plants at the rate of 2 cups per 1 sq. m.
Ash for shrubs and fruit trees. Before planting a tree or berry bush, a kilogram of ash is poured onto the bottom of the planting pit. This is necessary in order for the plants to quickly settle in a new place and develop the root system better. It is also recommended to periodically apply fertilizer to the trunk circles, for this, every 4 years, a shallow groove is dug around the tree, a couple of kilograms of ash are poured into it and ground with soil from above.
Ash for cabbage. Ash is necessary for growing seedlings and when planting them in open ground.
Ash for turnips. Before planting seeds in the ground, the prepared grooves are sprinkled with wood ash. The same technique is used when seedlings appear, they are powdered from above. Since ash is the optimal fertilizer for this crop, you must remember to add it later by dissolving a glass in a bucket of water. Plants are watered with infusion 2 times a month.
Ash for tomatoes. Seedlings of tomatoes will develop faster if periodically watered with an ash solution. Planting plants in the ground is accompanied by the introduction of fertilizer (2 tablespoons) in each hole.
Ash for strawberries. Top dressing with ash infusion is done in early spring. You can also use dry fertilizer, it is embedded in the ground around the bushes. This procedure contributes to an increase in the number of flower stalks, and, as a result, to an increase in yield. Ash is necessary for the formation of a new bed of berries, it is brought into the holes.
Ash for cucumbers. When planting cucumbers, a glass of ash is added to each hole. This fertilizer is included in many vegetable dressings.
Ash for radish. Potassium deficiency in the soil negatively affects the formation of root crops. Before sowing the radish, the grooves are sprinkled with dry ash.
Ash for potatoes. Dusting the seed potato tubers with ash promotes the growth of lashes and increases yields. In addition, potatoes from such a procedure become more starchy.
Ash as a component of compost and organic beds
It is not difficult to speed up the process of decomposition of organic waste: for this, you need to add ash to the compost heap, periodically pouring it over layers or pouring ash infusion onto the compost. Such fertilizer perfectly saturates humus with minerals and trace elements and serves to create warm beds.
Ash as a means of pest and disease control
Ash is an effective agent against harmful insects and microorganisms. With its help, gardeners save seedlings from the so-called black leg, prevent powdery mildew on cucumbers and gooseberries, eliminate slugs and caterpillars on cabbage. Ash has a detrimental effect on gray rot that affects strawberries, and keel, which is found on cabbage plantings.
Late blight on tomatoes is better to prevent than to cure. For this purpose, about a week after planting seedlings on an open bed, the soil around the plants is treated with ash. Do not miss the appearance of the first ovaries, the same procedure is done during this period.
Cabbage aphids are afraid of ash decoction. It differs from the infusion in that it needs to be boiled (300 g of ash is diluted in a liter of water and boiled for 20 minutes). After cooling and settling, the liquid is filtered, water is added to obtain a volume of 10 liters and used for spraying the plants.
Caterpillars on cabbage are poisoned with ash infusion; you need to do it the night before. For this, a glass of ash is mixed with a liter of water and left to infuse overnight. In the morning, the solution is shaken, filtered and used as directed. Cabbage leaves are processed on both sides and always in the early morning, when the caterpillars have not yet had time to hide.
The cruciferous flea will not annoy if the first shoots of plants are powdered with pure ash or mixed with tobacco dust. The disadvantage of this method is that it must be repeated after every rain or artificial watering.
Ash scattered around garden crops will save you from annoying slugs. To prevent gray rot, planting strawberries is treated with ash immediately after flowering.
Ash broth or infusion of ash prevents the appearance of powdery mildew that affects gooseberry bushes. To carry out prevention, the berry is sprayed 3 times, and water is added to the remaining sediment and the plants are watered at the root.
The use of ash when storing vegetables
Using the antifungal and antiseptic properties of ash, vegetables can be preserved until spring. Ash powder needs to be treated with root vegetables (beets, carrots, potatoes, celery, black radish) and placed in boxes that are placed in a cool room. Garlic is preserved in a similar way, only more ash is needed, the heads in the box are poured with it.
With increased acidity of the soil, lime is usually used. Using ash can also correct the situation and at the same time improve the structure of the soil, and in a safer way. For practicing organic farming, it is useful to prepare an infusion that contains ash. The component, rich in trace elements, provides excellent fertilization.
Ash infusion is used for forcing onions on a feather: the bulbs are kept in it for several hours before planting. Treating cuts and saw cuts in trees with ash powder will speed up their healing. Mixing it with sawdust, mulch is obtained, which is sprinkled on tree-trunk circles and beds.
Having a personal plot, it is difficult to do without ash. It replaces chemical fertilizers and acts only for the benefit of plants. Therefore, do not rush to take out the uprooted stumps and tree branches after pruning to the landfill, but adapt them to obtain irreplaceable fertilizer.
Wood ash as fertilizer
Any gardener knows that the soil needs fertilization from time to time, otherwise you will not have to count on a good harvest. However, the use of inorganic substances can lead to the fact that so lovingly grown tomatoes or strawberries will pose a threat to life and health due to the increased content of "chemistry". The way out of this situation is simple - you need to use organic matter for fertilizing the garden, which contains a lot of useful substances and at the same time is absolutely safe. These substances include wood ash.
Its beneficial properties have been known since time immemorial. It is not surprising that our ancestors, when laying out a personal plot, often did not uproot, but burned out the vegetation, which made it possible to significantly increase the fertility of the soil. And today, many zealous owners do not throw away oven ash, but collect it in order to cultivate a vegetable garden with it in the spring.
Composition and useful properties of wood ash
Ash is rich in phosphorus and potassium, it belongs to the category of mineral alkaline fertilizers, which have a very beneficial effect on the composition and structure of the fertile soil layer. This fertilizer is ideal for soil with a high acidity level, as it acts as a neutralizer. In addition to enrichment with useful substances, including zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, iron and molybdenum, ash helps to accelerate the formation of humus. This means that after harvesting, the fertile soil layer will not become thinner, and by the next season it will be ready to produce an excellent harvest.
Since ash belongs to alkaline fertilizers, then in parallel with replenishing the soil, it perfectly repels pests and helps to preserve the crop... It has been proven that snails and wood lice, as well as bears and moles, cannot tolerate this substance. In addition, ash can replace lime when processing compost to reduce its acidity. This natural substance makes the soil looser and softer, due to which it is enriched with oxygen, which plants so need.
It should be borne in mind that even in an area with humus in the spring, it is difficult to avoid the process of washing out nutrients from the ground by melt water. For this reason, the soil should be fertilized every year, and wood ash is the best option in this regard.
How to use wood ash
I fertilize many horticultural crops with ash. These are potatoes (the starchiness of tubers and yield increases), garden strawberries, cucumbers, zucchini, asparagus (asparagus), raspberries, currants, grapes, etc. I bring ash into planting holes for roses, peonies, clematis, bearded irises, etc. I use ash in as a fertilizer for many indoor plants. I noticed that zonal pelargonium (indoor geranium) reacts very quickly to the introduction of ash into the soil. In addition, I often drain the flowerpots from the charcoal I find in wood ash. I noticed that this is an excellent remedy that protects against the appearance of earthworms. They willingly crawl into the soil through the holes in the bottom of the pots when indoor plants are exhibited in the garden in summer.
Wood ash is a valuable product that I use contrary to all the "rules". For example, several times a season I bring it under hydrangeas. I once heard this advice from a very smart and experienced florist. Since then, every season I have to pour wood ash on the soil under the hydrangea bushes and immediately mix it with the soil or pour fresh soil on top. Hydrangeas (all types) instantly respond to such a treat and bloom more luxuriantly.
I recently read a wonderful piece of advice in P. Steinberg's book. In order for the hydrangea flowers to acquire a blue color, it is worth using coal ash.
To obtain the same results, it is enough to grow a plant in the soil of the following composition: for a given amount of ordinary garden land, equal amounts of heather soil and ash from coal are taken. All of these substances must be thoroughly mixed. According to Bar's experiments, coal ash plays the main role in the color, which gives the flowers of the hydrangea the purest blue color that can be obtained.
Wood ash is an excellent prophylactic agent against plant diseases and pests. Potato tubers are powdered with it before planting, water infusion of ash (with the addition of green or laundry soap) is sprayed with plant shoots from aphids. Try this way. The aphids will be done away with in a matter of hours. True, immediately after such treatment, you can shoot a horror film in the garden. But soon, when the ash is washed off with rain or water from a hose, flowers, bushes and trees will be beautiful and healthy.
Ash also helps in the fight against earthen fleas.
With the appearance of a flea in large quantities, the seedlings should be pollinated in the morning, after dew, with stove ash so densely that the greens on the leaf blade are not visible. This is repeated 3-4 mornings in a row, since the ash is washed off the leaves by watering every day. In the north, where the seedlings can be left without harm for a longer period of time without watering, each sprinkle can serve 3 - 4 days, and this measure can be limited. 3 - 4-fold sprinkling with stove ash significantly contributes to the growth of seedlings, while repeated sprinkling, apparently due to over-fertilization with it, slows down the growth of seedlings, which is why the nursery has to be fumigated from the leeward side with smoke, which instantly drives fleas from the seedlings. (Pavel Steinberg "Everyday recipe of a gardener. The golden book of a gardener, time-tested. Real recipes, which are more than 100 years old").
Ants and slugs are chased away with ash. Its water infusion with the addition of liquid soap is sprayed on plants from powdery mildew. For prophylaxis, cabbage is powdered from keel, potatoes from wireworm, gooseberry and currant leaves - from powdery mildew. Seeds are soaked in ash infusion. In the old days, stove ash freed the gardens from horsetail.
Infusion of wood ash
For introduction in liquid form, an infusion of ash is prepared, for which it is "brewed" with boiling water. In this case, the extraction of soluble substances occurs, which become more available for assimilation by plants. A tablespoon "with a slide" is poured with a liter of boiling water and insisted for a week, stirring occasionally. After that, the solution can be used both for fertilizing flower beds and beds, and seedlings of these crops. For seedlings, you can use pure ash infusion or mixed with mineral fertilizer solutions every 2 weeks.
In what cases ash can not be used
It is possible to assess the benefits and harms of wood ash for plants by the characteristics of the culture. Ash can be used for additional growth and support of soil minerals.
It is not allowed to use it with phosphoric ones, since ash has a sufficient amount of it in its composition, but in combination with nitrogenous feed it is possible to create favorable conditions for domestic crops, just do not mix and add them at the same time.
It is not recommended to make the discussed mineral dressing for such crops:
- other plants that prefer acidic sites.
Ash has a number of advantages over other organic and mineral fertilizers. It is safe for humans. Natural and sustainable. Contains many useful elements. It is cheaper than other fertilizers. Has an unlimited shelf life. Multifunctional. It is used both as a fertilizer and as a means of protecting against pests.
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