The Q&A Archives: Applying Fertilizer to a Rich Soil Mix

Question: I have a 8'x4' raised vegetable garden. I used a mixture of peat, compost, topsoil, and sand. Do I need to apply fertilizer? If so what kind, and when. Also can you recomend a good all purpose insecticide and desease control product ? Jackie Epps Nashville, TN

Answer: With the soil mix you described, I'd only add a handful or so of an organic fertilizer at planting and then sidedress at flowering, for those vegetables that flower. That should be enough fertility for most crops. Of course, each year you should add more compost and organic matter to keep the nutrient levels high. You should only spray your plants when you know what insect is causing the problem. Depending on the insect, there are many safe sprays available such as insecticidal soap for aphids. The first step is to identify the problem and make sure it's an insect causing it.

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