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A New Leaf in Plant Feeding


Foliar feeding is a process that allows gardeners to fertilize a plant through its leaves.

"I use a sugar foliar recipe that can make plants grow fast and produces big leaves, flowers and fruit," said Gary Matsuoka of Laguna Hills Nursery.

"This foliar spray was originally used in the Palos Verdes area, which doesn't get enough sun for trees to fruit. When they used this mixture, the plants fruited," said Matsuoka, who tried it one year on an orange tree that had never fruited. "Sure enough, I got about 200 oranges and monster leaves. I haven't used the mixture again, and it hasn't fruited since."

To make the foliar spray, mix:

* 16 ounces of Karo Syrup

* 16 ounces of water

* 2 ounces of seaweed concentrate (this is optional but helpful. It can be ordered through the mail from companies such as Gardener's Supply).

* 1 teaspoon of boric acid (which keeps the bugs off and prevents molding).

Add 4 tablespoons of the mixture to a gallon of water and 1 tablespoon of dish soap, which acts as an adjuvant.

Spray on plants in the evenings when it is the most humid. When possible, spray on new leaves, because older leaves have a waxy coating that is harder for the mixture to penetrate.

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