What Kind of Organic Matter Can be Used to Replace Fertilizers


We all run into the issue of finding the right nutrients for our gardens. But did you know that you can make some nutrients your plants will love with things you already have around the house? Did you know organic matter can be used to replace fertilizers? Most of the stuff you can use would go into the waste bin but we will teach you how to turn the trash into a food source that your plants will thank you for.

Coffee Grounds-Organic Matter Can be Used to Replace Fertilizers

Organic Matter

One of the most common things we have around the house already is Coffee Grounds. Used coffee grounds can be a great source of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium. We can’t just throw this into the soil as the leftover caffeine can harm our plants.

What we can do is toss the used grounds into a simple compost bin that will add all the nutrients and make a plant food in a short time.  If you do not have enough coffee grounds on hand you can usually find bags for free at your local coffee shop.

Banana peels-Organic Matter Can be Used to Replace Fertilizers

Organic Matter

Banana peels offer potassium and phosphorus and many other minerals. You can make a good banana “tea” by Filling a 2 quart jar mostly full with water, then cutting the peels into small pieces. Fill the jar until its full before pouring out the water to be saved for the plants.  You can then use the peels to make yet another food source by blending it with water into a puree you can water around the base of the plant with these to get them the nutrients they desire.

Eggshells-Organic Matter Can be Used to Replace Fertilizers

Organic Matter

Crush up used eggshells and put into a jar, add white vinegar and allow this mixture to sit for around a week. The vinegar will leach the calcium and neutralize the acidity of the vinegar. Strain the mixture and save the liquid. Then use 1 tbsp. of the calcium liquid and mix it with 1 tsp. of Epsom salt for a homemade CalMag.

Urine-Organic Matter Can be Used to Replace Fertilizers

Organic Matter

Are you ready for this next one? Urine! Yes you read that right. Urine. A healthy person can use their urine, dilute it with water at a ratio of 10 parts water to 1 part urine. This will give your plants a nitrogen dose that can help them recover from a deficiency. You can use just a little bit before watering like usual until runoff happens this way you do not have mineral build up in the soil.

Cooking water-Organic Matter Can be Used to Replace Fertilizers

Organic Matter

Aka Trash can broth. This is made from using food scraps that you collect up for a few weeks. You basically take all the scraps of food that you would otherwise throw away—this includes mostly vegetable peels, tips, and pieces that you may not want to eat.  We put all this into a gallon size baggie and into the freezer.

When it gets full you can dump this into a large pot, cover it with water and boil. After it boils down for a while you can then strain out the organic matter. This is great for broths and soups but also to feed to your plants. Just water them as usual with this liquid and it will give them a dose of nutrients. We don’t recommend adding meat to this recipe.

Old Beer-Organic Matter Can be Used to Replace Fertilizers

Organic Matter

You can use old beer as a fertilizer for plants too. Beer has lots of beneficial nutrients in it. You can toss your old beer into the compost or add it directly to your plants since beer is great for magnesium. If you ever have that rare occasion that you have leftover beer, don’t throw it out, instead use it for your plants.

Now all these probably sound kind of crazy but that’s what makes sustainable growing fun. You may still choose to buy nutrients that have been designed specifically for growing cannabis, but if you ever run out of those you can now supplement the nutrients with things you may have around the house. If you ever have any questions feel free to contact us any time, we’ll be happy to help! Just follow our Instagram, share your thoughts with us in a direct message!

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us!

And be sure to check out our other blog posts for useful tips on becoming a great grower!

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