Reddit Helps Answer: How Often to Use Fish Fertilizer in Your Garden

Last updated on October 24th, 2023 at 09:03 pm

Fish fertilizer is a popular organic option for providing essential nutrients to your plants. It’s known for its nitrogen-rich composition, making it a valuable addition to your gardening routine. But how often should you use fish fertilizer in your garden? The frequency of application can depend on several factors, as discussed by experienced gardeners on Reddit.

Reddit Helps Answer: How Often to Use Fish Fertilizer in Your Garden


Understanding Your Soil

User “roketgirl” on Reddit highlights that the frequency of fish fertilizer application depends on your soil’s initial nutrient content. If your soil is nitrogen-deficient, which often happens in gardens due to the constant cycling of nitrogen into the atmosphere, you might need more frequent applications of fish fertilizer. To gauge your soil’s nutrient levels accurately, it’s always a good idea to start with a professional soil test.

In contrast, if you’ve been enriching your soil with compost, green manure, or other fertilizers, it’s possible that your soil already has a decent supply of nitrogen. In this case, you can opt for lighter applications of fish fertilizer.

Crop Specifics

Different plants have varying nutrient requirements. Some plants, often referred to as “heavy feeders,” have high nitrogen needs, while others require less. For example, crops like corn, tomatoes, sunflowers, and cannabis are known to be nitrogen-hungry. On the other hand, lettuce, herbs, most trees, and slower-growing or smaller plants have lower nitrogen requirements.

Frequency of Application

Taking into account your soil condition and the specific needs of your plants, you can determine how often to use fish fertilizer:

  1. Unimproved Soil and Hungry Crops: If you’re growing a nitrogen-hungry crop in unimproved soil, you might need to apply fish fertilizer more frequently. Some gardeners suggest up to twice a week during the growing season. This ensures your plants have an adequate nitrogen supply.
  2. Healthy Soil and Less Demanding Crops: In contrast, if you have healthy soil and are growing less nitrogen-demanding crops, a once-a-month application should be sufficient to meet their needs.
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Remember that it’s essential to apply fish fertilizer when your plants are actively growing. Perennials, for instance, often cease significant growth around midsummer and focus on fruit development and hardening wood for the winter. Nitrogen isn’t as beneficial during this phase.

Seedlings and Small Plants

If you’re dealing with seedlings or small plants, they may not require fish fertilizer right away. Allow them to grow and establish themselves in their new pots or garden beds. When you see new growth emerging (typically after about a week), it’s a good time to start considering fertilizer. For young plants, a once-a-week application should suffice.

Soil Amendments

It’s important to note that if you’re using a high-quality potting mix, like Fox Farm Ocean Forest, or if your garden soil hasn’t been amended significantly, you may need to provide additional nutrients as your plants mature. Coffee grounds and eggshells, while beneficial in the long run, may not offer an immediate nutrient boost.


The frequency of fish fertilizer application in your garden depends on several factors, including your soil’s initial nutrient content, the specific requirements of your crops, and the growth stage of your plants. By considering these factors and regularly monitoring your garden’s progress, you can fine-tune your fish fertilizer application schedule to ensure your plants receive the right amount of nitrogen to thrive. Remember that healthy, well-fed plants are more likely to reward you with bountiful harvests and vibrant growth.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts. Jones James
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