You can make your own Nitrogen rich plant food with unflavored gelatin.
Unflavored gelatin is a good source of nitrogen for plants because it’s made of animal proteins. Even better, these proteins become nitrogen without the decay smell, like say, everything else rotting in the compost pile.
Gelatin is a protein obtained by boiling skin, tendons, ligaments, and/or bones with water. It is usually obtained from cows or pigs. Gelatin is used in shampoos, face masks, and other cosmetics; as a thickener for fruit gelatins and puddings (such as Jell-O); in candies, marshmallows, cakes, ice cream, and yogurts; on photographic film; and in vitamins as a coating and as capsules, and it is sometimes used to assist in “clearing” wines. Gelatin is not vegan. However, there is a product called “agar agar” that is sometimes marketed as “gelatin,” but it is vegan. It is derived from a type of seaweed. (source: PETA)
Knox Gelatine isn’t Kosher, so it can’t be used as plant food for potted Tradescantia fluminensis
Simply pour one (1) package of gelatin into 1 cup of hot water and stir until dissolved.
Then add three (3) more cups of cold water and that’s it.
Makes one quart (1 qt) of Nitrogen rich plant food.
(Refresher: 4 cups = 1 quart and 4 quarts = 1 gallon)
You simply pour it into the potting soil once a month without risk of overfeeding or fertilizer burn.
Gelatin, in terms of basic elements, is composed of 50.5% carbon, 6.8% hydrogen, 17% nitrogen and 25.2% oxygen.
More detailed information on gelatin by the Gelatin Manufacturers Institute of America can be found here:
Here’s a study on the use of Gelatin used as plant food:
An independent two-year controlled study at the biology greenhouses of the University of Houston discovered that Knox® Unflavoured Gelatine is an ideal source of nitrogen for plants that leads to healthier, fuller, and greener houseplants.
In nature, plants derive nitrogen from decomposing plant and animal matter (compost), and the plants convert the nitrogen into protein, the “building blocks” needed for growth. Since compost is an impractical method of cultivating houseplants, various types of chemically produced inorganic nitrogen is available. However, inorganic nitrogen requires special care in order to avoid the risk of overfeeding and accidental ingestion by children. Organic nitrogen, on the other hand, works on a time release basis. This ensures that even an accidentally large application will not damage the plants, so that overfeeding is virtually impossible.
Knox® Unflavoured Gelatine has been proven as an ideal organic nitrogen source for today’s indoor gardener. It is a practical, economical nitrogen source that also meets the criteria for cleanliness, convenience, and safety. Gelatine is a pure protein, packaged and premeasured in a clean, dry form and readily available in most supermarkets and kitchen cupboards.
To have healthier, greener houseplants, simply add 1 pouch of Knox® Unflavoured Gelatine to 1/4 cup (50mL) cold water in a 1 quart (1 litre) pitcher. Allow the gelatine to soften for 1 to 2 minutes, add 1 cup (250 mL) tap water, stir to dissolve, then slowly fill the pitcher with cold water. Now water your plants as you would normally.
Water once a month with all-natural Knox® for greener, healthier, more beautiful plants.
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