Homemade Starter Fertilizer


Often when you read planting instructions on seed packets, you will see the recommendation to add a starter fertilizer. This fertilizer gives the soil an extra boost of nutrients that help feed the young seedlings after germination. While you can purchase both chemical and organic starter fertilizer, you can also purchase separate ingredients to make your own at home and often save money in the process.

Step 1

Mix together 2 parts blood meal, 3 parts bone meal and 1 part kelp meal in a plastic pail or other container that has a lid. For instance, you would use 2 cups of blood meal, 3 cups of bone meal and 1 cup of kelp meal.

Step 2

Apply 1 to 2 tsp. of the mixture dry into holes dug for transplants. If you are planting seeds in rows, place approximately 1 tsp. of starter fertilizer spread every 2 to 3 inches in the row.

Step 3

Mix 2 tbsp. of starter fertilizer with 1 gallon of water in a plant sprayer to apply the fertilizer using the foliar method of feeding young plants (placing the fertilizer on the plant leaf). Each plant will need approximately 1 cup of the liquid fertilizer.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 bag blood meal
  • 1 bag bone meal
  • 1 bag kelp meal
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Plastic pail or container with lid
  • Plant sprayer


  • Maryland Cooperative Extension: Soil Amendments and Fertilizers
  • "Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening" by the Editors of Organic Gardening and Farming Magazine; 1975
  • "Rodale's All-New Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening", edited by Fern Marshall Bradley and Barbara W. Ellis; 1997
Keywords: starter fertilizer, homemade starter fertilizer, organic starter fertilizer

About this Author

G. K. Bayne is a freelance writer, currently writing for Demand Studios where her expertise in back-to-basics, computers and electrical equipment are the basis of her body of work. Bayne began her writing career in 1975 and has written for Demand since 2007.