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The Nutrient Powerhouse: Using Calcium-Infused Fertilizer

The Nutrient Powerhouse Using Calcium-Infused Fertilizer

Gardening isn’t all about chucking seeds into the soil and hoping for the best. While that does work out for some, that’s not the route to follow if you want healthy and luscious plants.

In this article, we’ll let you in on a secret trick that’ll transform your dropping plant and poor soil into the best-looking plant in your garden! 

So what are you waiting for? Let’s get down and dirty as we dive into the calcium-infused world of fertilizers!

Benefits of Using Fertilizer with Calcium

Benefits of Using Fertilizer with Calcium
Image: The Spruce

You see, to get you on the calcium-infused fertilizer train, it’s important to know why it’s such a great addition to your regular plant care routine. 

Here are a few benefits your plants and soil will get that’ll have you wishing that you started using calcium fertilizer sooner!

1. Improved Soil Structure

Improved Soil Structure
Image: FirstCry Parenting

Poor soil quality is a big NO if you want your plants, whether crops or ornamental, to develop healthily. Calcium plays a big role in helping with soil flocculation, a science-y term for helping to clump loose particles in the soil.

As a result, you can kiss soil compaction problems goodbye (and good riddance!). This will also help improve how easily oxygen, water, and nutrients move throughout the soil, helping disperse these resources quickly and evenly.

To boot, because of the improved overall structure, it’s unlikely that your soil will become waterlogged or erode either. 

2. Boosted Nutrient Uptake

Boosted Nutrient Uptake

Because calcium helps with the overall soil structure, nutrient uptake will become a breeze for your plant as it’ll easily be able to permeate deeply into the root zone. 

If you think about it, your plant’s practically walking, er, crawling its way straight to a buffet of nutrients and minerals! 

Having said that, you can expect a ton of new and healthy foliage, rich and juicy harvests, along with a strong and well-developed root system.  

3. Reduced Risk of Calcium Deficiency

Reduced Risk of Calcium Deficiency
Image: PowerAG

While it’s a no-brainer that applying calcium-infused fertilizer into your soil will reduce the risk of calcium deficiency, it’s important to note that competition for calcium can get quite intense especially if you have a ton of plants in the same bed.

Though it’s comforting to know that calcium is readily available in the soil, it can leach over time, causing resources to become scarce. Without adequate calcium levels in the soil, your plant could experience severe stress that can affect its development.

Thus, providing a tailored and balanced dose of calcium ensures there’s a healthy amount in the soil for everyone to share.

4. Increased Disease Resistance

Increased Disease Resistance
Image: ela bracho on iStock

The extra calcium in the soil does wonders for plants’ cell walls, making them stronger and better at defending your plant from contracting any diseases. 

Aside from that, calcium is also the kryptonite for several kinds of infectious pathogens. Having said that, sprinkling even a little bit of calcium every now and then will keep the bad guys or in this case microbes away.

So if you’ve constantly battled with diseases and infections in your garden, take this as a sign to boost the calcium content in your soil.

5. Heightened Microbial Activity

Heightened Microbial Activity
Image: Modern Farmer

Any gardener would do anything (and we mean anything!) for heightened microbial activity in the soil because that’s a tell-tale sign that your soil is healthy and fertile.

In order to keep your micro buddies active and happy, you’ll need to give them something to munch on. We’ll let you in on a little secret – calcium is one of their favorite snacks! 

Other than that, calcium sort of acts as a binder, making other minerals more accessible. To top it off, calcium also works wonders at balancing the soil’s pH level, creating the perfect environment for microbial activity.

Different Types of Calcium Fertilizers

Different Types of Calcium Fertilizers
Image: The Spruce

Now that you’ve read all the benefits of using calcium-infused fertilizer, we’re sure you’re already looking for the best kinds to add to your soil. 

Look no further as we’ve listed the different types that you can choose from depending on the needs of your soil and plant.

1. Calcium Carbonate

Calcium Carbonate
Image: Reddit
PurposeReducing soil acidity levels

Sometimes also called ‘agricultural lime’, calcium carbonate’s main focus is raising the pH level in the soil. By reducing acidity, it makes the soil a more conducive environment for microbial activity and plant growth.

While increasing acidity is its primary benefit, it’s also a great source of calcium (duh!). Thankfully, it’s rather easy to find calcium carbonate both in gardening centers and at home.

Calcium carbonate is naturally found in shells such as from oysters or clams. Another common source is limestone, dolomite, and coral sand.

2. Calcium Nitrate

Calcium Nitrate
Purpose• Promote calcium intake
• Increased plant growth

Calcium nitrate is a water-soluble fertilizer whose primary intent is to improve plant growth and calcium uptake. Hence, it’s best used for regular maintenance, especially during the growing season.

Keep in mind that the dosage, frequency, and application method will depend on the kind of calcium nitrate fertilizer that you have – some are applied onto the foliage while others through fertigation (a fancy term for applications through an irrigation system).

3. Calcium Sulfate

Calcium Sulfate
Image: The Spruce
PurposeImprove soil structure

Calcium sulfate, though typically just called ‘gypsum’, is a type of calcium-infused soil amendment. Having said that, its primary function is to improve soil structure through aeration and flocculation, ultimately, this prevents soil compaction and erosion. 

To boot, gypsum is pH neutral, which means that you can add it to your soil without worrying about the pH level of your soil, especially if you have sensitive plants.

It’s also worth mentioning that gypsum slowly releases calcium over time. Because of this, don’t expect it to immediately aid in calcium deficiency.

List of Calcium-Rich Fertilizers

1. Shells

Image: Homesteading Where You Are

Shells from marine organisms, in particular, such as oysters and clams, are a crunchy calcium-rich snack for your soil and plants. They contain high amounts of calcium carbonate which works wonders at balancing out the soil’s pH level. 

Because of its density, it releases calcium into the soil slowly. While this may seem like a bad thing, it actually isn’t! This way, it reduces the risk of over-fertilization and even nutrient runoff.

For gardeners who prefer the au natural route, this is as natural as it gets as you can quite literally just harvest oyster and clam shells from the ocean or from your dinner’s waste products.

2. Gypsum

Image: CropLife

Scientifically referred to as calcium sulfate, gypsum is a naturally-occuring mineral that’s usually found in rock formations. In the agriculture world, gypsum is typically used as a soil amendment and to help increase soil fertility, but it’s also a rich source of calcium.

Gypsum is quite literally a special rock because of how packed it is with calcium. Thus, it’s a sought-after natural solution to increasing calcium content in gardens and even farms.

3. Agricultural Lime

Agricultural Lime
Image: Braen Stone

You may have heard of agricultural lime before, especially if you’re a seasoned gardener. You’ve also probably come across a bag of it at your local gardening center. 

This is because agricultural lime is literally calcium in powder form. Thus, many simply sprinkle a generous amount onto their crops.

On top of that, it’s a great soil amendment that doesn’t mess up the pH level. In fact, agricultural lime helps reduce soil acidity helping your plant absorb all the nutrients available in the soil.

4. Wood Ash

Wood Ash
Image: UNH Extension – University of New Hampshire

Before you raise your eyebrow at adding wood ash to your soil, hear us out first! A byproduct of wood, its ash contains a ton of rich minerals which includes calcium carbonate.

Wood ash is also alkaline so it can help balance out your soil’s pH level while it’s boosting the calcium content. 

To boot, it also has additional trace minerals that can contribute to your soil’s overall health and fertility. Though don’t be too reliant on these as they come in small amounts that aren’t enough to sustain proper growth alone.

5. Bone Meal

Bone Meal
Image: Benison Media

If you’ve played a good amount of Minecraft, you’ll know that bone meal is the absolute cheat sheet to boosting plant growth and health. It’s a great source of vitamins and minerals that are slowly released over time, making it a great long-term fertilizer.

As it breaks down, your plant and soil gets a healthy dose of calcium in a form that makes it easy to take in. Even then, it’s vital that you follow the packaging’s application instructions to avoid over-fertilizing. 

Luckily, you can easily find bone meal in your local gardening center, so you don’t have to make it yourself. It’s typically in a finely ground powder form that you can simply sprinkle into the soil.

6. Calcium Nitrate

Calcium Nitrate page
Image: PhotoDune

If you want to bring in the big guns, then calcium nitrate is your best bet as it’s a water-soluble fertilizer that’s specifically designed to increase calcium uptake in plants. 

Thus, it’s the go-to option for many gardeners that give their plant regular calcium maintenance, especially in peak growing seasons when plants need the extra nutrients and minerals.

Easily found in any local gardening shop, calcium nitrate packages will come with instructions that include the most appropriate dosage, frequency, and application method depending on the variant and kind of plant you have. 


How do I know if my soil needs calcium?

The most accurate way to determine if your soil is low in calcium is to perform a soil test. The results will show whether there’s a calcium deficiency or a nutrient imbalance.

Is calcium-infused fertilizer good for all kinds of plants?

Virtually all plants need calcium. However, you’ll need to be mindful of your plant’s specific dosage and frequency requirements as these differ from plant to plant and depend on your soil and environmental conditions.

What will happen if I put too much calcium-infused fertilizer in my soil?

Too much calcium in your soil will cause a nutrient imbalance that can negatively affect your plant. You may notice drooping, wilting, and deformed leaves, to name a few.

How long will it take until I see a difference in my plant after using calcium-infused fertilizer?

The amount of time it takes to see a difference in your plant after using calcium-infused fertilizer depends on how severe the calcium deficiency your plant is experiencing is. 

Other factors also include the application method, growing environment, soil conditions, and plant species, among others.

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