What is needed for nutrition of gladioli?
Gladioli have a long growing season, during which they consume from the environment with the help of roots and partially through the leaves nutrients from various natural compounds and fertilizers. In large quantities, they, like all other plants, need nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), potassium (K), a few smaller ones need calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), iron (Fe), sulfur (S) and other elements. Nutrients consumed in large quantities are called basic, or macronutrients, consumed in smaller quantities - trace elements. The latter also include boron (B), manganese (Mn), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn) molybdenum (Mo) and others.
Only 65 years ago, it was believed that about ten nutrients that make up the bulk of the plant, such as carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron and sulfur, are enough for normal plant growth. More recently, it became clear that the list of nutrients needed by plants is much wider.
As a rule, the compounds of calcium, sulfur, iron and magnesium in the soil contain enough for the culture of gladioli. Basically, these ornamental plants need nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, sometimes calcium and magnesium. When growing gladioli in household plots, the grower may limit himself to the use of fertilizers containing three main nutrients - nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. However, if you want to have inflorescences that stand out in beauty and power, you must use fertilizers containing many other nutrients.
In any case, you can not give food to plants without taking into account the nutrient content in the soil. Therefore, each florist once a year, in extreme cases - once every three years, must take a soil sample from his site for analysis. Having received as a result data on the content of the main nutrient elements in the soil on its site, the grower is developing a gladiolus nutrition system for his case, and this requires knowledge of the characteristics of the consumption of nutrients by plants.
Features nutrition gladioli
The most demanding gladiolus to nitrogen and potassium. They need comparatively less phosphorus. Therefore, the ratio of basic nutrients (N: P: K) for their normal growth should be 1: 0.6: 1.8. This ratio refers to total consumption. At different stages of development, the assimilation by plants of individual nutrients changes. For example, at the beginning of the growing season, gladioli nitrogen requires one and a half times more than potassium, and five to ten times more than phosphorus.
Nitrogen is better consumed by gladiolus plants in the presence of phosphorus and potassium compounds. The greatest consumption by plants of this element is observed during the development of one or four leaves in gladioli. An excess of nitrogen leads to a delay in flowering and a deterioration in the quality of the upper flowers, a distortion of the peduncle and a decrease in the plant's resistance to disease. At the same time, a strong growth of the stem and leaves is noted, in which case it is said that the plant is “fattening”.
With a lack of nitrogen, the growth of gladioli is delayed, flowering is weakened. The latter is expressed, in particular, in a decrease in the number of flowers in the inflorescence. In addition, the color of the leaves is light green.
In those cases when at the initial stage of plant development only nitrogen fertilizers are applied in fertilizing, growth does not fade for a long time. This can lead to poor maturation of gladioli corms. So that the growth processes after flowering do not continue, but gradually fade, at such a time it is better to give fertilizers with nitrogen fertilizers together with phosphorus and potash. With abundant nitrogen nutrition, the size of the gladioli corms can exceed the usual ones, but according to the internal structure they are worse, they age faster, plants grow weakly from them.
If adult corms of gladioli are grown (two years or older), then in the initial period of development it is not necessary to feed with phosphoric fertilizers - planting material and soil provide all the needs of the plant. Gladioli are very demanding on potassium nutrition, so plants from adult corms are fed with nitrogen and potassium in the initial period of development. For a baby who does not have such nutrient reserves, it is better to give complete fertilizer, that is, containing nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.
Potassium should be included in the nutrition of gladioli throughout the growing season, as it is involved in compounds that provide movement of plant juices. This element makes the plant more resilient in weather and disease. If potassium is not enough, then the old leaves of gladioli give it to the young, and they themselves dry up and die. First, the edges of the leaves dry. The peduncle at the same time grows weakly, it is shortened.
If during the formation of three or four leaves, when the flower stalk of the gladioli is formed, not giving enough potassium to fertilize, the number of buds in the flower stalk is reduced. However, the highest consumption of potassium, as well as nitrogen and phosphorus, in gladioli is observed during budding. Moreover, if for phosphorus this increase is small, then the increase in potassium and nitrogen consumption occurs very sharply with a further not so sharp decline.
Potassium deficiency after flowering of gladioli affects the quality of corms, which are poorly stored and give poorly developing plants the next year.
The need for phosphorus almost does not change during the growing season, only slightly increasing during budding and flowering. Lack of phosphorus inhibits growth and flowering. After flowering, joint feeding of gladioli plants with phosphorus and potassium fertilizers contributes to a better outflow of nutrients from the leaves into a new corm.
It is possible to provide gladioli with nutrients in the required quantity only by supplementing the soil compounds with mineral and organic fertilizers.
On the packages of mineral fertilizers purchased in specialized stores, indicate the number of nutrients included in them in percent, usually for the active substance: nitrogen - N, phosphorus oxide - P205potassium oxide - K20.
What mineral fertilizers can be used for gladiolus
In agriculture, a wide variety of fertilizers are used. We will consider only those that an amateur gardener can buy in a store (table 1).
Table 1: Types of mineral fertilizers containing one nutrient (indicated by active ingredient)
|Urea (N - 46%)||Double superphosphate (P205 — 45%)||Potassium sulfate (potassium sulfate, K20 — 46-52%)|
|Ammonium Sulfate (N - 21%)||Superphosphate (P205 — 14-20%)||Potassium Chloride (Potassium Chloride, K20 — 57- 60%)|
|Sodium Nitrate (N - 16%)||Bone meal (P205 — 15-30%)||Potassium carbonate (potassium carbonate, potash, K20 — 57-64)|
In addition to mineral fertilizers containing one nutrient, there are complex and complete fertilizers, which include two or three main nutrients. For gladioli, the following fertilizers are usually used: complex - potassium nitrate (N - 13%, K20 - 46%), kalimagnesia (K20 - 28-30%, Mg - 8-10%); full - nitrophosphate (N - 11%, P205 - 10%, K20 - 11%), nitroammophosco (N - 13-17%, P205 - 17-19%, K20 — 17-19%).
There are other types of fertilizers that can be used when growing gladioli after preliminary testing. The industry also produces liquid complex fertilizers that can be given as top dressing.
The most important microfertilizers for gladiolus culture include ammonium molybdate, copper sulfate (vitriol), zinc sulfate, manganese sulfate, cobalt nitrate, boric acid, and sometimes potassium permanganate, which also serves as potassium fertilizer, but is more often used as a disinfectant.
Microfertilizers must be handled very carefully, as their overdose can lead to the death of plants. The main rule when making them is not to prepare fertilizing solutions of any compound with a concentration of more than 2 g per 10 l of water.
What are organic fertilizers
Among organic fertilizers, peat, composts, rotted manure and chicken droppings are the most accessible for amateur gardeners. Fresh manure for gladioli cannot be used, since it serves as a source of pathogens of fungal and bacterial diseases. Organic fertilizers contain all the main nutrients (tables 2 and 3).
Table 2: Content of essential nutrients (percent dry matter) in organic fertilizers
|Type of manure (litter)||N||R205||K2O|
|Bird droppings||0,6-1,6||0,5-||1,5 0,6-0,9|
Table 3: Content of basic nutrients (in percent dry matter) in peat
|Type of peat||N||P2O5||TO20|
|High / Low||0,8-1,4 / 1,5-3,4||0,05-0,14 / 0,25-0,60||0,03-0,10 / 0,10-0,20|
How and when to apply fertilizers?
Fertilizers for gladiolus are given at different times in different ways. There are techniques for pre-planting fertilizer, planting and post-planting fertilizer. The latter is divided into root and non-root top dressing.
Under the digging of the soil in the fall, organic, phosphorus and potash fertilizers are applied. Fertilizer doses are dependent on soil and cultivation conditions for gladioli. For example, in autumn one or two buckets of organic fertilizers and 30–40 g of superphosphate and potassium sulfate can be given per meter. In the spring no later than two weeks before planting, 1–30 g of urea is added per meter. Pre-planting fertilizer in the spring and in the fall is embedded in the soil during digging; planting - at the same time as planting, they are poured into the holes and grooves 3-4 cm below the level of placement of corms.
Root and non-root top dressing of gladioli is needed in order to strengthen plant nutrition with certain elements at certain times. Feeding doses are set based on the characteristics of the site, soil analysis, the appearance of gladioli. At the same time, factors such as soil composition, its acidity, the presence of nutrients necessary for plants, the microclimate and location of the plot, and the height of the groundwater are taken into account. Pre-planting and planting fertilizers are considered auxiliary. Root dressing of gladioli strictly coincides with a certain stage of plant development. Liquid top dressing is preferred, as nutrients immediately enter the zone of the root system.
The amount of fertilizer applied during the season as top dressing is calculated not only according to soil analysis, but also based on the density of gladiolus planting, doses of pre-planting and planting fertilizers. Fertilizers are usually dissolved in 10 liters of water and consumed per 1 m.
It is difficult to perform fairly accurate calculations, since at the depths of the roots of gladioli (0.2-0.5 m), the composition of nutrients constantly changes due to rain or, on the contrary, drying out, as well as their binding to soil compounds. Therefore, when developing its feeding system, the florist uses data known from the literature, adjusting on the basis of personal observations and experience for several years. As such an initial reference point, we can take the feeding system developed by V. N. Bylov and N. I. Raikov (table 4).
Table 4: Doses of fertilizers for feeding gladioli during the growing season, in grams of nutrient per 1 m²
|Plant development stage||N||R||K||Sa||Mg|
|Two or three sheets are developed||30||30||30||10||20|
|"Four to five sheets||15||30||60||10||20|
|"Seven to eight sheets||15||60||60||10||20|
|15 days after pruning||—||—||60||—||—|
Experienced flower growers, the doses of fertilizing indicated in the table are halved and fertilizers are often applied in smaller doses. This requires more time, but allows you to maintain more evenly needed nutrient content in the soil. Thus, for three summer months they give ten top dressings.
During the growing season, top dressing is effective not only with macro, but also with microelements. Trace elements contribute to the formation of more powerful plants with large flowers. They are especially important for feeding at the stage of three to four leaves, when the gladiolus flower stalk is formed. On the recommendation of A. Gromov, 2 g of boric acid and potassium permanganate, 0.5 g of cobalt nitrate, 1 g of copper sulfate, 1 g of zinc sulfate and 5 g of magnesium sulfate are taken per 10 l of water. It must be remembered that an unreasonable increase in the doses of trace elements causes inhibition of plants or even their death.
Thus, when growing gladioli, you have to constantly count the leaves, confining feeding to a certain number of them. It is easier to carry out this work if large corms are planted separately from small ones, and small ones separately from the baby. Experienced flower growers who have gathered a large collection of gladioli also share early and late plantings. All this makes top dressing more effective, since the nutrition of a baby and young corms differs from that of an adult corm - young planting material requires a half to two times more intensive nutrition.
Foliar top dressing also gives macro - and micronutrients. They allow you to very quickly intervene in the development of plants. So, with poor development of the leaves of gladioli and their light green coloration, foliar feeding of urea is given. During flowering, foliar fertilizing with phosphorus and potassium fertilizers works well, of course, with the exception of the possibility of the solution getting onto the flowers.
Micronutrient feeding of gladioli is very effective. A good result is given by A. Gromov’s micronutrient dressing in the development phase of two or three leaves, especially if the weather is hot. To accelerate flowering during the development of the sixth leaf, he offers foliar top dressing of the following composition: 2 g of boric acid and 1.5–2 g of potassium permanganate, dissolved in 10 l of water. Baltic flower growers believe that two or three times spraying with microelement solutions during the growing season not only increases the number of flowers in gladioli, but also contributes to the formation of larger corms. A. Zorgevitz suggests spraying gladiolus plants with a solution containing the following trace elements, in grams per 10 liters of water:
- Boric acid - 1.3
- Copper sulfate - 1.6
- Manganese Sulfate - 1
- Zinc Sulfate - 0.3
- Cobalt Nitrate - 0.1
- Ammonium Molybdate - 1
- Manganese - 1.5
Questions - Answers
Question 1. How to calculate the mass of fertilizer needed to feed gladioli if you know the required amount of battery?
Answer. Suppose you want to feed plants with nitrogen, phosphorus or potassium at the rate of 30 g of each element per 1 m. The gardener has the following fertilizers on the farm: nitrogen - phosphate urea - potassium superphosphate - potassium sulfate. According to table 1 we find the content in these fertilizers of the nutrient element. For calculation, we take the first digit, since it is better not to over feed than overfeed. Therefore, we assume that 100 g of each fertilizer respectively contains 46 g of nitrogen, 20 g of phosphorus and 52 g of potassium. Then the amount of fertilizer for feeding in each case 30 g of the active substance can be determined by the formula:
- urea 100 g x 30 g: 46 g - 65 g;
- superphosphate 100 g x 30 g: 20 g - 150 g;
- potassium sulfate 100 g x 30 g: 52 g - 58 g.
It is inconvenient to weigh fertilizers every time. Better to use some measure. For example, you can use a tablespoon, especially since you do not have to touch the fertilizer with your hands. (Of course, such a spoon cannot already be used in cooking.) One tablespoon contains 25-30 g of granular substance. In our example, considering the upper limit, 1 tablespoon of urea, five tablespoons of superphosphate and two tablespoons of potassium sulfate need to be consumed per 1 meter when feeding.
Question 2. Is it possible to feed gladioli with mullein?
Answer. Mullein can feed gladiolus plants, as it contains all the essential nutrients. However, it is not used in concentrated form, but the infusion in the ratio of one part of the mullein to 10-15 parts of water. For beginning gardeners, it is better to use only mineral fertilizers at first. Organic crops can be used only after cultivation, bearing in mind that mullein, especially fresh, serves as a source of pathogens of many plant diseases. For this, a bag of harsh fabric with manure is suspended in a barrel of water at the rate of one part of manure for four to five parts of water. Insist five to seven days. The finished hood is diluted three to four times and fed, spending up to 10 liters of solution per 1 m.
Question 3. How much phosphorus and potassium is in potassium phosphate?
Answer. Potassium phosphate, or potassium phosphate, is not a fertilizer, but many gardeners buy this substance in a chemical store and use it at their site. Often used mono- and disubstituted potassium phosphate. To determine the amount of phosphorus and potassium in them, it is necessary to know the chemical formula of the substance and the atomic weights of its constituent elements. The chemical formula of monosubstituted potassium phosphate is KH2P04. The atomic masses of its constituent elements: K —39, H — 1, P —31, O — 16. Therefore, the mass of monosubstituted potassium phosphate in units of atomic (now molecular) mass will be:
- 39 + 1×2 + 31 + 16×4 = 136.
If we take the amount of this substance in grams, numerically equal to the molecular weight, we can calculate how much potassium (X) is in it,%:
- 136g KN2R04 - 100%
- 39 g K - X%
- X = 39 x 100: 136 = 29%.
Accordingly, the phosphorus content will be,%:
- 31 x 100: 136 = 23%.
The formula of the disubstituted potassium phosphate is K2HP04.
The sum of its molecular weight
- 39 x 2 + 1 + 31 + 16 x 4 = 174.
We calculate the percentage of potassium on the amount of disubstituted phosphate by weight in grams, numerically equal to its molecular weight, that is, 174 grams:
- (39 x 2) x 100%: 174 = 45%.
Similarly, we calculate the phosphorus content:
- 31 x 100%: 174 = 18%.
When using the above compounds for fertilizer, it must be remembered that monosubstituted potassium phosphate has an acidic reaction, and disubstituted alkaline.
- V. Lobaznov - Gladiolus