A green fertilizer

We have an organic garden, and we’re changing fertilizers.   The leaves on our fruit trees and blueberry bushes aren’t green (not enough nitrogen), and the fertilizer smells bad. Look at the ingredients, and you’ll see why.  Can’t be good to inhale the dust as you apply the fertilizer.

blended fertilizer label

Our county master gardeners recommend alfalfa pellets.  They say our soil has enough phosphate and potash but needs nitrogen.  Alfalfa pellets have nitrogen, so it’s a fit. YMMV, especially outside the Santa Clara Valley.

Alfalfa pellets are green, vegetarian, and don’t smell.

alfalfa pellets

Alfalfa pellets cost much less than the organic fertilizer sold at home improvement stores. It pays to shop around.  A 50-pound bag costs

  • $20 at a pet food store in Palo Alto (near the Stanford campus)
  • $15 at a feed and pet supply store in Cupertino (less pricey suburb)
  • $10.50 at a feed store outside Santa Rosa (rural)

We patronize a native plant nursery in the north bay.  We had a car full of plants when we checked out the local feed store.  We saw the price and made room for the bag.

We’ll try the alfalfa pellets let you know how the plants like it!


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I enjoy travel, art, food, photography, nature, California native plants, history, and yoga. I am a retired software engineer. The gravatar is a Nuttall's woodpecker that visited our backyard.

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