In this video, Beverly is joined by Angela Chandler of The Garden Academy. Bev and Angela discussed fertilizer and how it’s beneficial to your plants.

– [Beverly] Hi, welcome to The Arbor Gate. I’m Beverly Welch here with my dear friend, Angela Chandler, of the Garden Academy, our partner in education.

– [Angela] Good morning, Beverly.

– Good morning. So, Angela, you know, every year, every season, people ask so often, “What do I feed? What do I do?” And you know, their garage shelves [[00:00:30]] are lined with bags and bottles and products. They’ve got dates on their calendar, under stress, in a hurry, “I’ve got to do this now,” process of feeding our flowers, our vegetables, our herbs. But we can make that process much more simple.

– We really can, Beverly. You know, one of the issues with that is it gets very complicated when you think, “Well, my fruit trees need this. My azaleas need that. [[00:01:00]] My vegetable garden needs this.” So you have multiple products, and then, as you say, you have that calendar confusion, as I say, and then it’s finding the time to do it. Then you go out in the yard and you’ve got a whole wagon full of product. And everything in your yard has to be fertilized differently? It’s really not achievable for most of us.

– No, it’s not.

– And you know, you and I kind of share an approach to the way we fertilize so I think we decided to bring it to our viewers and see exactly how simple can we make this. [[00:01:30]]

– Exactly. So, you know, when you come out to The Arbor Gate, you’ll notice these gardens, they’re all built with the Arbor Gate Soil Complete and they’re all fed with the Arbor Gate Blend, have been for years, 23 years to be exact, and we have never sprayed these beds for insects or disease and we have no irrigation system. I will not say that we never water because in times of drought or if we go a week or two in the summer with no rain, we’ll soak the beds, [[00:02:00]] but you know, the approach…and the reason we made these products is we want to keep it simple, yet, effective.

– And it really is. You know, I think, one of the questions people have is when they get to fertilizing is, you know, why…they don’t understand how to fertilize because they don’t really know why they’re fertilizing and the goals of fertilizing. And unless you’re a golf course manager where you have a lot of turf to manage, your garden is going to be a blend of many things, from turf to trees and everything in between. [[00:02:30]] So, really, our goal of fertilization is to replace what our plants are taking out of the natural soil. So, if you kind of approach it like that and you think, “Okay. It doesn’t need to be quite as complicated. I don’t need to start doing all the mathematics. I just need a constant little replacement of what my plants are using to sort of keep everything in balance all year long.”

– Right. And you know, you say the constant. When I’m out in the yard, I keep a garbage can full of blend, [[00:03:00]] open, you know, with the lid closed, ready to go. I get a bucket. I get a scoop or a coffee can. And every time I’m working in the yard or working in the gardens, I’m constantly throwing this food down. And again, it’s not calendar-driven. It’s not variety-driven. It’s just feeding the soil.

– It’s because you’re out there working and you know that your plants are constantly removing and so you’re constantly providing. That’s really what it boils down to. So, it can…you know, [[00:03:30]] you want to…there are certain times you want to do things. Bed prep, of course, you want to make sure you’ve got ready for a good kickoff. And then between color changes, if you’re a person that changes your color a couple of times a year, for vegetable gardeners, it’s between crop change outs when we’re planting in succession. We know we want to do those things, but for the rest of the garden, it’s just a matter of when you’re out there working, I kind of generally know that I hit everything about once a month. I’m not afraid at all to fertilize in November, December, [[00:04:00]] January, because I’m not over fertilizing and I’m not using a water soluble synthetic that my plants are going to uptake all at once in a time of their stress.

– And organics are unaffected by temperature. They work all the time.

– Right. When the moisture and temperature are right for the plant to receive those nutrients, they’ll receive those nutrients. Other than that, they’re just going to stay there available. Another great thing about organics is that they do not migrate [[00:04:30]] through the soil as quickly as synthetics do so we’re not going to dump a lot of that stuff off into our water system. It’s going to stay in our gardens available for our plants when they need them.

– Perfect. So, really, all we need, good soil…

– Start with good soil.

– …good food, replace when needed, occasionally some acidifier and we both like this sulfur.

– We do. If you…you know, that’s the other thing, too, is not needing all those different fertilizers and if you keep it simple and then the few things that do need a little acidifying, [[00:05:00]] you can add to that a couple of times a year. And then, in general, your minerals, this has a great mineral package in it for soil minerals, follow that up with a good foliar feed to apply minerals to the leaf that keeps everything robust and healthy. Other than that, that’s pretty much all your garden really needs.

– So we can keep it simple.

– We certainly can.

– Thanks, Angela.

– Thank you, Beverly.