Avoiding Transplant Shock

Many gardeners may be surprised to learn that large scale agriculture growers utilize transplants, especially in high-value vegetables, citrus trees  and other cash crops.  Just as the home gardener can experience some loss or underperformance when transplanting flowers, trees, tomatoes, etc., growers’ crops suffer from transplant shock or stress also. One of the most effective preventative treatments is the transplant dip, which is different than a starter fertilizer. This method is equally effective for indoor gardening, container gardening and outdoor gardening.

Simple Transplant Dip

In an open container, bucket or pail, mix 4 oz. of Great Big Plants Compost Extract per gallon of water. You may want to add a small amount of fertilizer if your plants are looking stressed. Gloves are recommended as you dip each plant into the mix immediately before replanting. Be sure to maintain root ball integrity as this soil around the roots acts as a sponge for the transplant mix.  If the root ball  falls apart significantly, continue to plant. After the plant is secured into the ground or container, pour some of the transplant mix around the base of the plant. If the planting site is in direct sunlight, lightly apply some additional water to move the transplant mix down into the soil. Hint: If transplanting several like plants at the same time, omit treatment for a plant or two. You will see the difference in a couple of days if not sooner.

The Benefits

The Great Big Plants transplant dip described above supplies several benefits. The nutrition provided is exactly where it needs to be, next to the feeding root mass. Unlike simple compost tea, the mix contains microbes that not only immediately begin to convert organic nutrients and chemical fertilizers into a plant available form, but also these microbes occupy space in the soil that otherwise could be filled by disease causing organisms. Extremely important are the various trace minerals and minor organic nutrients provided. These minerals and organic nutrients are missing from all popular fertilizers and yet are crucial to overall plant health.

contributed by Bill Thomas