Useful Tips for Feeding Strawberries with Phosphorus
Strawberry is a rather specific fruit crop. It is neither a shrub nor a tree, but a small herbaceous plant and is quite demanding on many minerals such as potassium and nitrogen. Feeding your strawberries with phosphorus can also improve your harvest.
Phosphate fertilizers are generally considered spring fertilizers. Plants are difficult to assimilate them and it takes a long time for them to dissolve. If for some reason you did not feed the strawberries with phosphorus fertilizers in the fall, or you think that such feeding is insufficient, then you may well do this feeding in the spring. After all, phosphorus is the nutritional element that largely influences the formation of fruits. Lack of phosphorus causes crushing of strawberries, a decrease in their size and quantity, a decrease in the sweetness of the fruit, and a decrease in their quality during transportation. Therefore, fertilizing with phosphorus is the most important among all of all three additional fertilizing (potassium, nitrogen, phosphorus) that we must carry out for strawberries.
In order to make a quick feeding with phosphorus, it is not enough just to distribute the phosphorus fertilizers over the surface of the earth. Then this nutrient will reach the root layer of the soil in about two to three years. It is necessary to make a phosphoric infusion by pouring one kilogram of double superphosphate with five liters of boiling water. Such a solution must be left overnight, periodically shaking and stirring with a handle. After a day, another five liters of water should be added and one liter of the resulting infusion should be used for feeding by diluting in ten liters of water. Thus, ten liters of infusion is enough for one hundred liters of water. This is more than enough to feed a medium sized strawberry garden.
The same phosphoric infusion is perfect for many fruit shrubs, such as gooseberries, different types of currants, chokeberry, but strawberries are especially responsive to it.
For the most effective dissolution of phosphate in five liters of cooled boiling water, it is necessary to add half a liter of ordinary nine percent vinegar. Acidification of water will cause the conversion of calcium phosphate into more soluble forms for it. The amount of vinegar that you add will be insignificant in the final concentration that will be used for watering. Acetic acid will be picked up by the soil microflora, become a source of energy and will stimulate the development of beneficial soil microflora.
The sediment that remains in the bucket after using the solution will also contain sufficient doses of phosphorus, so you should not get rid of it. You can dig it under fruit trees, in beds for vegetable crops. They will be very grateful to you.
It must be remembered that superphosphate has a long lasting effect on any soil. The effect of its application is noticeable up to several years. It can be used in top dressing together with other mineral fertilizers containing nitrogen, potassium, but in no case should it be mixed with chalk and ammonium nitrate.
In order to get a juicy strawberry harvest and justify the effort and money invested in its cultivation and care, it is necessary to systematically use phosphorus fertilizers in top dressing.