Ask a Question forum: Fertilizing shrubs in the south

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skgerd
Jan 16, 2015 8:41 AM CST
I do have a question about fertilizing new shrubs I planted in late fall. I live in Northern arkansas. what type of fertilizer should I use, and when? I planted a variety of shrubs, flowering and not.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
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drdawg
Jan 16, 2015 8:45 AM CST
Welcome! skgerd. I am almost embarrassed to tell you that I simply use 8-8-8 granular fertilizer. I carry around a 5 gal. bucket of it, and just throw handfuls of it out, broadcasting it around the shrubbery. Heck, I have a lot more than just shrubs in the landscape, and everything gets this treatment. I apply it twice, once in March and then again in June. That's all I do. My landscape plants seem to like what I do since they all look healthy.
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Jan 16, 2015 11:43 AM CST
skgerd: Welcome to All Things Plants!

I agree with drdawg ... wait until spring for the first feeding, after the last chance of frost in your area. Shrubs will be starting their new season of growth at that time and I'm sure they will appreciate a bit of well balanced fertilizer!

If you find time to check it out, we have a specific forum here on ATP for trees and shrubs: http://garden.org/forums/view/shrubs/ where folks chat about all types of trees and shrubs that grow in their gardens.

Again, Welcome!

Lin
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purpleinopp
Jan 19, 2015 10:41 AM CST
Good morning & welcome!

I have never fertilized a shrub, just put compost around the base occasionally, to keep a "mulched" layer of it. Fertilizer of the packaged, synthetic variety is a relatively new invention, not at all necessary when growing in healthy soil.

The best thing one can do for any plants in the ground is to improve the soil by adding organic matter to the surface:
http://permaculturenews.org/2013/09/20/soil-not-dirt-dr-elai...
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Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Jan 19, 2015 11:41 AM CST
I certainly agree with that, and though I add mulch every couple of years, having a clay subsurface, I will never have truly good "soil". So I cheap with 8-8-8. Whistling
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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All I ask is a chance to prove that money can't make me happy.

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