Last winter I read about remineralizing gardens and how it’s not enough to add compost every year as minerals will eventually get depleted too as the plants use them up. I’ve been adding compost to my vegetable garden for ten years and have created a fairly rich soil but have never added minerals or trace minerals to my whole garden. So this season I decided two things-add something to remineralize the soil and get a soil test to see how my soil was. I haven’t had a soil test done in about 4 years so I knew I was long overdue especially since I garden so intensively.
The test results showed my soil was good except it was low in manganese, sodium and iron and medium for copper, boron, salt, magnesium and potassium.
So I researched out what product I should add and I decided on AZOMITE. Azomite is a rock dust mined from Utah and is actually an ancient deposit of aluminum silicate clay and marine minerals. It is a rich source of available potash (0.2%) and over 70 trace minerals, including calcium (1.8%), sodium (0.1%), and magnesium (0.5%). I bought online a 44 lb bag of micronized (consistency of flour) Azomite from Peaceful Valley Farms Organic site but they are not the only source-Amazon sells it in smaller size bags. After I added my usual 2-3 inches of compost in the spring while prepping the beds, I sprinkled Azomite on top of each garden bed and and gently turned it over in the top four inches of soil. I also read you can top dress your plants after you have them in with it. So for my strawberry plants, I just sprinkled it on top of the plants and watered in.
The results are amazing-WOW! is an understatement.
I don’t think I’ve had such a lush garden ever and I’ve had some amazing gardens. My strawberry beds went from struggling last year (part of that was the drip system wasn’t working very well but part of it was it needed something) to the tallest, happiest, most fruitful plants.
The main thing I’ve done differently this year is add Azomite. Now I know we’ve gotten some good rains in August which can only help a garden but all the plants in my veggie garden have gone ballistic growing and producing veggies-it’s like a frigging jungle.
I only used around half the bag in my 3000 sq foot garden, so a little goes a long ways. I will sprinkle the other half in next year and will get more for my perennial plants and fruit trees as well for next year. Once done, you won’t have to keep replenishing it every year but every few years, I’m going to add Azomite again.
Wow! Amazing is all I can think of right now.
Hmmmm . . . . I just fertilize with common fertilizer for vegetables, but I can see why this makes sense. It is something that some palms, particularly the common queen palm, really appreciate. Palms can get pale or spotty if lacking micronutrients, even if everything else is happy.
yes I am very happy with the results. There are other rock dust products out there (like glacial rock dust) so probably they work as well.
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Hello, Jannine, you mentioned Azomite in your demo at your place dealing with insects. I am harvesting now and am sending veggies to four different programs for feeding the poor and elderly here in Las Vegas. The upgrade to Dripworks system turned my greenhouse into a jungle.
It will be a pleasure this year to till my gardens, improve the soils with Azomite and horse manure, and after seeing your illustrations, building a hoophouse construction early on my raised bed for corn, since I have so much 1/2″ pvc pipe given to me. Covered with wire mesh, and then FRC, it should give me an extra two weeks of growth for crops in that bed for next year.
Sounds like a good plan Gene. Just make sure of your horse manure source that the grower hasn’t used herbicides (like roundup) on the hay. If they have, it will ruin your gardens as the horse eats the contaminated hay, passes it through themselves and it stays in your soil or compost for years. Be careful and don’t ruin your garden beds you are working on so hard! Ask the question and if the horse owner doesn’t know, find another source out your way…
Very inspiring, Jannine! I’m going to give it a try as well.
I am going to research this stuff further. Very ineresting.. also, do you actually harvest your own quinoa or is it just ornamental?
I only had a few volunteers from a previous planting. I’m going to harvest them and give the seeds to my bread maker friend.
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