How much yield are you currently getting from your tomatoes? Maybe it’s too little that you’re thinking of boosting the harvest using chicken manure. My friend Sam, an agriculturalist, was facing a similar issue. After using chicken manure for his tomatoes, his yields increased. So, is chicken manure good for tomatoes?
Yes, chicken manure is good for tomatoes. This manure ranks as the best fertilizer for tomatoes due to its high nitrogen concentration, which is more than in other animal droppings. Even so, you must compost the chicken manure first to avoid burning your crops with a fresh one.
In this article, I will answer the main question and discuss what plant yields best when using chicken manure. Read on.
Is Chicken Manure Good For Tomatoes?
Yes, chicken manure is good for tomatoes if you use it in a compost state. Besides being easy to use, it’s accessible and works best for leafy and fruit plants. So, why is chicken manure best for tomatoes? Its N-P-K ratio is well-balanced, with each nutrient serving a specific purpose. Here’s how.
- Nitrogen promotes green leafy plant growth.
- Potassium and phosphorus boost root growth.
- Potassium enhances flower development and vegetable and fruit ripening
Chicken manure is also enriched with a higher concentration of nitrogen. Nitrogen helps in chlorophyll which is essential for photosynthesis to take place. The lack of nitrogen in tomatoes leads to small, pale, and yellow leaves.
How Much Chicken Manure Should I Put In My Garden?
The amount of chicken manure you put in depends on the size of your garden. For example, if your garden is 500 sq ft., you need 60 pounds of chicken manure. Adding a high amount might burn your tomatoes to death. Too little of it may be equally ineffective, and you might end up with less-than-expected yields.
Can You Put Chicken Manure Straight On The Garden?
Yes, you can put chicken manure straight in the garden. Even so, this is only safe after decomposing it. Raw chicken manure can cause damage to your plants.
What Composition Makes Up A Chicken Coop?
A good chicken coop consists of undigested food, urine, feathers, and bedding. Preparing compost helps decompose these materials. Once the chicken coop decomposes, it’s safe for use when planting.
Below are safety tips to consider when handling chicken manure:
- During planting, only apply compost to the soil. Else, apply it before the fall of planting.
- When using chicken manure, always ensure you wear gloves.
- If handling raw food, please ensure you wash them thoroughly before consumption.
- You should avoid eating raw vegetables planted using chicken manure if you’re prone to foodborne diseases. The most vulnerable people are young children, pregnant women, diabetic people, liver disease, and AIDS patients.
How Do I Put Chicken Manure on My Tomato plants?
You put chicken manure on your tomatoes by simply spreading it lightly around your tomatoes (top dressing). Also, you should ensure that your chicken manure is well-composted. Composted chicken manure encourages the soil’s slow release of micro and macronutrients.
Top dressing is done either before or after watering or after the rain. Chicken manure is a natural fertilizer; thus, any time is perfect for applying it to your tomatoes.
But, when planting, avoid top dressing. Instead, add 2 to 3 inches of chicken manure to your soil, mix evenly, and plant.
What Plant Is Chicken Manure Good For?
Chicken manure is good for almost all flowering, vegetable, and fruit plants. This manure is richer in nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium than any other farmyard manure, including cow, sheep, and horse droppings. Even so, you should allow your chicken manure to become aged or composted before use. Why? The raw one can damage or burn the plants.
Also, the fresh or improperly composted chicken droppings can contain harmful pathogens, contaminating the growing plants. As a result, crop products become a potential source of illnesses for humans and animals that consume them.
Chicken Manure For Leafy vegetables
Chicken manure helps vegetable leaves flourish. Vegetables like kale, lettuce, and arugula are grown for their leaves. So, they highly benefit from this manure because they’re heavy feeders. The ideal time for adding the chicken manure is when planting and during the blossoming time to make plants leafy.
Chicken Manure For Rose flowers
Roses are also like chicken manure. Its plants need a sufficient supply of nutrients for flowers to blossom. Hence, adding this fertilizer to your growing flowers helps them improve their leaf development.
What Is The Best Homemade Fertilizer For Tomatoes?
The best homemade fertilizer for tomatoes is one containing all the vital nutrients the plant needs. These include nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Tomatoes require different amounts of nutrients at various stages of life. Hence, you have to use a fertilizer that suits the current need of your tomato plants.
One fact about homemade fertilizer is that you make the fertilizer based on your soil’s nutrient deficiency. So, you’ll first need to conduct a test on your soil.
Some of the components you can use to make your homemade tomato fertilizer include the following:
- Wood ash
- Tea leaves/coffee grounds
- Blood meal
- Bone meal
- Alfalfa pellets
When Should You Fertilize Tomatoes?
You should fertilize tomatoes immediately after planting. Then, you can reapply it just before fruiting. Once the fruit-bearing process kicks off, continue adding the booster in intervals of 1-2 weeks until frost sets in and plants become dormant.
The other best time to use fertilizer for your tomatoes is during bed preparation. This makes the soil ready to receive plants since it’s fortified with nutrients.
If you’re using chemical fertilizer, you’ll have to apply it after watering the garden to prevent burning the plant roots. Compost manure has no restrictions; thus, you may apply it anytime.
What Manure Is Best For Tomatoes?
The best manure for tomatoes is cow manure. For optimum results, you should apply this manure as a pre-planting soil amendment and after harvesting. Although chicken manure is good for growing tomatoes, cow manure tends to do a better job on your tomato yields.
Like any other animal droppings, you should allow the cow manure to compost before adding it to your soil. Hence, you shouldn’t apply it before 6 months elapses as it’s fresh and may be prone to weeds. Also, bacteria such as clostridium, salmonella, and listeria are likely to be found in uncomposted manure. So, allowing enough time for it to dry would save you a big deal.
Cow manure is an excellent choice if you’re looking for an organic fertilizer for your tomatoes. Not only does organic manure help in better air circulation, but it also allows great soil drainage. What’s more? Organic manure has moderate temperatures that wouldn’t hurt your tomatoes.
But do you know why most tomato farmers prefer cow manure? It’s because it also has a low level of nitrogen that ensures your plants do not get bushy and produces maximum fruits.
Are Chicken Manure Pellets Good For Tomatoes Plants?
Yes, chicken manure pellets are good for tomato plants. The pellets have the same nutritional value as the original chicken manure. So, it’s an ideal fertilizer to boost your tomatoes due to its high nitrogen concentration.
It also helps tomatoes thrive well by balancing the soil nutrients. But, too much nitrogen from chicken pellets encourages leaf growth more than root growth. As a result, your plants grow huge leaves but produce low yields.
Which Plants Don’t Like Chicken Manure?
Plants like rhododendrons, camellias, blueberries, and azaleas don’t like chicken manure. Also, it’s unsuitable for lime-hating plants because of its alkalinity. Grass trees are other plants that dislike chicken manure. That is due to their growth; they only require photosynthesis to grow, and the process doesn’t get along with this fertilizer.
How Much Chicken Manure Pellets Do I Add To The Soil?
Add up to 5 cups of chicken manure pellets per 10 sq ft. of growing area. Excess manure results in bushy plants with less yield. Also, if you’re planting seedlings, ensure that you work on them evenly, ensuring the roots don’t come into contact with chicken manure.
What Is The Best Compost For Tomatoes?
The best compost for tomatoes is natural compost. This category of compost constitutes household, wood chips, and commercial composts. These additives are suitable for boosting the nutritional value of your soil. Always keep off the uncomposted manure as it is too strong and can burn young tomato plants.
There’s no doubt that chicken manure is good for tomatoes. It’s an ideal organic fertilizer with adequate nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. These nutrients are essential in enhancing the healthy growth of your tomato plants.
This manure is readily available as you only need to be a poultry farmer or buy it from a poultry farm. Also, for the tomatoes to thrive, you only need a little of it per plant. So, this fertilizer greatly reduces the production cost of your tomato farming.
Use your manure in a composted form to avoid burning your crops and eliminate harmful bacteria in fresh manure.