Easy Homemade Plant Food (Miracle Grow)

4 Materials

Today I am going to show you an Easy homemade plant food that is SO affordable AND it’s actually effective. I will even tell you why it is. Don't forget to visit the blog link below for a special chemist tip and infographic to save for later. The coolest thing about being a chemist would be the experimenting and research of chemicals. Chemicals are truly in everything. Food, beauty products, cleaning products, and especially gardening products like fertilizers.

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My easy homemade plant food was made for less than $4.00 and that was for all the supplies. Per batch, it is actually just pennies to make!

Store bought plant food, like Miracle Grow, is great. It is very effective and just easy to buy, but the truth is, these products are massed produced. This means they have numerous chemicals that are unnecessary for your plants. They are really just fillers.

On the other hand, store bought Organic plant foods can get pricey. Especially for the good brands.

The trick for potted plants is an easy, fast acting nutrient dense food that acts like miracle grow!

Easy homemade plant food is the perfect option for any patio gardener. And like I said, it was a total of $4.00 for all these products and you will only use a very tiny amount of each one. So, this means you can get hundreds of batches out of this!

Chemistry Cachet’s Easy Homemade Plant Food

* 1.5 tbsp magnesium sulfate (Epsom Salt – MgSO4)

* 1.5 tsp sodium bicarbonate (Baking Soda – NaHCO3)

* 0.25 - 0.5 tsp Ammonium Hydroxide (Ammonia – NH4OH)

* 1 gallon of water (H20)

In a water container, add all the ingredients. Top with the one gallon of water and stir. I water about 5 or 6 big plants with this. You don’t want to add this entire amount to one plant. A little goes a long way!

Many have asked why such a small amount of ammonia and why the variance in the amount. Ammonia can be potent, so a little tiny bit goes a long way. With hot summer temperatures, I usually go with the 0.25 tsp of ammonia. I don't want to give the potted plant too much that may risk burning leaves. This is very unlikely to happen however. You can use up to 0.5 tsp of ammonia and the solution will be just fine. It will be a little stronger, but equally as safe for plants.

**make sure to check out the blog post for FAQ's and other nutrient options. I know this isn't a complete fertilizer, so please check out the blog url for more tips on this.

Also, this is just a fun, quick solution for potted plants and anyone new to gardening.

Let’s check out why this solution even works. This Fun Infographic shares all the details on why this solution is perfect for plants!

This solution does especially good on potted ferns, geraniums, and hibiscus!

Coming up with this solution was fun and I love how easy it was to put together. Don't miss out on my Extra Chemist Tips at the bottom of the post on one more element you may want to add! Just click the URL at the bottom.

For those that are interested in more garden tips, including our favorite slow release plant food. please check out our eBook.

Find more before and after pictures on the blog below!

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Alexis @ Chemistry Cachet
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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3 of 158 questions
  • Kat Lee Radkins Kat Lee Radkins on Jul 15, 2023

    You say potted plants...is this okay to use on regular potted houseplants? Such as Diffenbachia, Pothos, etc.

  • Cel92244331 Cel92244331 on Oct 30, 2023

    Is this ammonia ,baking soda, and Epsom salts recipe good for christmad cacti peace plants, lavender and palm plants???

  • Judi Judi on Jun 01, 2024

    could I use lemon scented ammonia?

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3 of 182 comments
  • Dana Dana on Jul 10, 2023

    Home recipes to get rid of ants in flower bed

  • Pre103196017 Pre103196017 on Jun 24, 2024

    This is the difference between chemistry & agronomy. Nutritionally, what is the baking soda providing the plant? NOTHING - Baking soda - NaHCO3 . . . Na (sodium) harms plants, and the rest will gas off. Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate), yes plants need Mg & S but they aren't major needs. All this mixture does is acidify the soil (not good) and add nitrogen, Mg, and S. Just like us humans, plants need a balanced diet, mainly of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iren, etc.

    This is a cut "trick" fertilizer but you might stick with a more well rounded mix. I strongly disagree with the comment of "filler" miracle gro type products provide a good balance of major nutrients (N, nitrogen, P phosphorus, K potassium) and minors like iron, manganese, etc.

    • Definitely check the blog post for more details on the purpose of this, more balanced options etc. while I’m a chemist by trade, I actually worked on this type of “home” formulations in horticulture in college. More importantly, I have used this formula for about 12 years now and it continues to prove its success with the results.This is why testing is one of the most crucial things for any diy. And it’s important not to misunderstand what these DIY tips are meant for :)