I’m stepping away from plant profiles this week to put a spotlight on Azomite, because I’m getting lots of questions about how to apply it.
I asked Mr. Azomite himself, Mike Fodge, to explain, but first I have some notes of my own:
- This product has now been included in my Fertilization Schedule, but it’s optional, especially if you’ve been consistent with compost top-dressing.
- If no top-dressing has been applied for years, at least get down one application of trace minerals and trace elements (such as Azomite) this spring. Two applications over the next year would be better, while the Azomite folks encourage three.
- Azomite is not the only such product on the market, but it is the most readily available. Similar compounds are available from Nature’s Way Resources and Soil Mender.
- Applications can be done at almost any time of the year however they work best when closely paired with a fertilization.
- Don’t overthink it … just get it down. As if you’re lightly putting out a fertilizer.
- It can be used everywhere – vegetable gardens, on potted plants, in hanging baskets, in flower beds, etc.
- Once you’ve applied trace minerals a few times, you can cut back to once every couple of years.
Now … here’s the complete story from Mike Fodge:
AZOMITE is a natural mineral substance that is mined directly from its Utah desert source. OMRI-Listed for organic production, AZOMITE can be used as an agricultural fertilizer and/or soil amendment product.It is easy and safe to use and good for the environment.
The “father of fertilizer”, Justus von Liebig, developed the “Law of the Minimum” which is important in understanding what AZOMITE does. The Law states that plant growth is determined by the scarcest “limiting” nutrient; if even one of the many required nutrients is deficient, the plant will not grow and produce at its optimum.
Using AZOMITE with your current fertilization schedule is easy. A 44-pound bag covers up to 12,000 square feet. I would recommend the GRANULATED form of AZOMITE that was developed for broadcast applications. Set your current broadcast spreader to the middle applicator rate. If you apply AZOMITE without fertilizer, there is no rush to water the product in. There is virtually no Nitrogen, therefore no worries about burning your lawn. If you mix/apply AZOMITE with your favorite fertilizer, water as you always do. When mixing AZOMITE with fertilizer, pour them both into a wheelbarrow for the best visual mix.
On a lawn that has not had micronutrients applied before, I would recommend three applications for the first year … Spring, mid-summer and autumn. Once your lawn has had a year of application of micronutrients, I would recommend applying AZOMITE in the spring and the fall. Lawns will experience stress with heat, cold, and lack of water, too much water, or catastrophic events like flooding or extreme erosion. When these events occur, the next application should be applied as soon as possible to the areas affected.
I recommend that AZOMITE be applied to planting beds as well. Apply AZOMITE with a small hand-held applicator and walk the beds. The best time to do this is when you are applying mulch and or compost to your beds. Most people apply mulch/compost to their beds twice a year. When planting perennials, a tablespoon of AZOMITE is a perfect amount to ensure that micronutrients are there for the plant to perform at its most notable use.
IMAGES: Azomite Mineral Products, Getty, Jessamyn Tuttle