University of Florida

Fertilizing Your Vegetable Garden

Vegetable garden success begins with soil preparation and continues with quality care.

Your garden will need nutrients. Composted manures and fertilizers labeled for general use or vegetables can be used to supply these nutrients.

There are many fertilizing techniques. Some gardeners put fertilizer in the bottom of their rows under a layer of soil before planting. Others spread fertilizer in small trenches dug on either side of planted rows. Just make sure that tender roots are not in direct contact with the fertilizer.

You can also scatter fertilizer over the entire garden area, either by hand or with a spreader. Avoid depositing fertilizer on young plants as it may "burn" them.

Fertilizer should be applied to the garden just before planting and then on a regular schedule throughout the season. Have your soil tested before purchasing fertilizer. Testing is available through your county Extension office.

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