Gardening : Try Fertilizer Tablets

When transplanting a new tree or shrub from a container, the addition of slow-release fertilizer tablets to the planting hole will feed the young tree or shrub without subjecting it to fertilizer burn.

These tablets are designed to provide nutrients to plants for up to one year. As they release the nutrients very slowly, no burn occurs. When refilling the planting hole, simply add the recommended number of fertilizer tablets to the planting hole as it is being refilled with soil. The number of tablets is determined by the size of the plant container, stated on the label. The tablets are placed so that they surround the root ball of the plant at depths of 4 to 8 inches, about 2 inches from the root ball.

There are several brands of fertilizer tablets on the market. I have had good results with Osmocote Planting Tablets. A box of 35 tablets sells for about $9 at nurseries and garden centers.

I've also found fertilizer tablets to be a convenient way to fertilize established trees and shrubs.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World