When growing high yield vegetables or young plants under glass it is critical that you provide the optimum conditions to maximise growth, water retention and fruiting for maximum harvest potential. We use the following compost mix for potting on all our pepper, aubergine, courgettes and pumpkins, which are considered intense crops and therefore heavy feeders during the growing season.
70% Peat free multi purpose compost.
10% Perlite or Horticulture grit sand
10% Well rotted organic matter.
Depending on how your plan to feed your crops you can chose from the following options:
Adding a slow release fertiliser will enable the plants to absorb the readily available nutrients as they require them and nothing is wasted. However this is, as the name suggests a slow (normally 6 month) release process as the protective coating of the fertiliser b and may require additional liquid feeding or foliar sprays to enable the best start of your summer fruiting crops.
Alternatively you can foliar and liquid feed from the start of the season and allow a fast absorption rate of nutrients from the onset, this way the compost is simply a buffer for the liquid nutrients that you make readily available during the watering process. The benefit of this process is that it enables you to adjust the required nutrients on a day to day basis leaving you in complete control of the final harvest.
We mix all the ingredients together in wheelbarrow. Once well mixed add water using a fine spray or watering can with a fine rose. Leaving to stand and soak up moisture overnight or a few hours if your are short on time.
When filling your final size pots usually a 3 litre, be sure to tap firmly to remove any air pockets from the newly added compost mix.
Plant young Pepper, Aubergine or Cucurbits plants and firm compost prior to watering. We also use a teaspoon of liquid molasses or compost tea dissolved in a litre of water and put into a spray bottle to mist the developing leaves.