Using Epsom Salts in your Garden
November 12, 2019
Epsom salt – also known as magnesium
sulfate – helps seeds germinate, makes plants grow bushier, produces more
flowers, and deters pests, such as slugs and voles. It also provides vital
nutrients to supplement your regular fertilizer.
Plants will have visible signs that they are starved for a
particular nutrient. If a plant’s leaves turn yellow all over the plant, it can
be a sign they need more sulfate. If lower leaves turn yellow between the veins
(and the veins stay green), they may need more magnesium.
Epsom Salt is recommended by Master Gardeners and used
regularly by commercial growers around the world. Tests by the National
Gardening Association confirm that roses fertilized with Epsom Salt grow
bushier and produce more flowers, and it also makes pepper plants grow larger
than those treated only with commercial fertilizer.
Here are some other tips for using Epsom
salt in the garden:
– 2 tablespoons per gallon of water; feed plants monthly.
– Frequent watering for indoor plants can cause a buildup of salts in their pot. A tablespoon of Epsom Salt sprinkled on top can aid in flushing the salt buildup out.
– Spray leaves of houseplants to increase their green color, just combine 2 tablespoons of Epsom Salt and a gallon of warm water in a spray bottle and spray directly onto the leaves of the plant.
– 1 tablespoon per foot of plant height per plant; apply every two weeks. Also scratch 1/2 cup into soil at base to encourage flowering canes and healthy new canes. Soak unplanted rose bushes in 1 cup of Epsom Salt per gallon of water to help roots recover. Add a tablespoon of Epsom Salt to each hole at planting time.
Shrubs (evergreens, azaleas, rhododendron):
– 1 tablespoon per 9 square feet. Apply over root zone every 2-4 weeks.
– Apply 3 pounds for every 1,250 square feet with a spreader or dilute in water and apply with a sprayer.
– Apply 2 tablespoons per 9 square feet. Apply over the root zone 3 times annually.
– Sprinkle 1 cup per 100 square feet. Mix into soil before planting.