How To Use De In Your Garden For Healthy Plant Growth
Diatomaceous earth (DE), a powdery dust derived from the fossilized remains of ancient aquatic organisms, is quickly becoming a popular choice among gardeners looking to minimize their carbon footprints. This natural substance can help improve plant health by providing essential trace minerals, encouraging beneficial organisms in the soil, and providing protection from pests. Read on to learn more about what DE is and how to use it in your garden for healthy plant growth.
What Is Diatomaceous Earth?
Diatomaceous earth is a sedimentary rock composed of the fossilized skeletons of single-celled aquatic organisms called diatoms. This mineral dust is incredibly fine and is made up of over 80 percent silica, along with trace amounts of other minerals. DE is available in different grades, so be sure to use food-grade or horticultural-grade DE for use in the garden.
Benefits Of Using DE In The Garden
DE has many benefits for garden plants, which makes it a great addition to any organic gardening regimen. Here are some of the ways DE can help your plants and soil:
- Provides Trace Minerals: DE is rich in minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, and iron, which are important for plant growth. These minerals are slowly released into the soil, helping to improve the soil’s fertility.
- Encourages Beneficial Soil Organisms: DE is a natural soil amendment that helps to encourage beneficial organisms, such as earthworms, beneficial fungi, and beneficial bacteria, which are essential for healthy soil.
- Protection From Pests: DE is a natural pest deterrent. The powdery dust is abrasive and causes small cuts in the exoskeleton of insects. This helps to protect plants from certain pests, such as aphids, flea beetles, slugs, and caterpillars, without the use of harmful chemicals.
How To Use DE In The Garden
Using DE in the garden is easy. Here are a few tips for applying DE:
- Apply DE to the soil around the base of plants, being careful to avoid contact with the plant’s foliage.
- For plants that are prone to pests, such as roses and tomatoes, reapply DE every few weeks.
- Mix DE with water and use as a transplanting solution to help prevent shock and encourage root growth.
- Sprinkle DE around the perimeter of your garden beds to help discourage pests.
- Mix DE in with compost and/or mulch to add trace minerals to the soil and discourage pests.
Using DE in the garden is a great way to improve plant health while minimizing your carbon footprint. This natural product is easy to use and provides essential trace minerals, encourages beneficial organisms in the soil, and provides protection from pests. So, if you’re looking for a simple and effective way to promote plant health, consider adding DE to your garden.