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I used to loathe gardening when I first moved into my own place, but over the years that have followed I have gradually become more and more interested in it, and I am now at the stage where I actually enjoy tending to my gardens.
I have accumulated a vast array of pots and planters, along with several hanging baskets over the last few years, which I regularly water to keep them looking their best, along with removing any irritating weeds that pop up.
A few months ago I purchased a 1 litre bottle of Miracle Grow all purpose plant feed in the hope that it would give my plants a bit of a boost during the dismal summer that we have endured this year. It cost me just under £4 from my local garden centre which I considered to be good value, as it is high concentrated, and so just a little goes a long way.
To use the Miracle grow it is a simple case of adding a capful (25 ml) to 4.5 litres of water, which is roughly the contents of a standard watering can. As mentioned above this small amount of just 25ml means that there is enough of the miracle grow in the 1 litre bottle to produce 40 watering cans full of the stuff, which is more than enough to last me all year.
This can then be poured over the plants (but not in direct sunlight) and soil to help give the plants added nutrients which are key for them to flourish.
Miracle grow contains main ingredients of Nitrogen (6 parts), Phosphorus (5 parts), and Potassium (5 parts), which as well as small traces of Iron, Magnesium Boron and Manganese. This mixture of ingredients are designed to give the plants a better foliage and increase their growing rates, whilst adding strength to the roots, and colour to the flower heads.
~~~ My Opinion ~~~
I have been using this miracle grow for a couple of months now, and I have to say that I am impressed with it. I apply it every weekend to my pots, planters and baskets, with 1 watering can acting as enough covering the whole lot of them. I feel as though my plants are the best they have ever been this year thanks to the miracle grow, although it is difficult to prove this unless I was to leave a couple of pots out to see how they compare to the pots that have received the treatment. However my plants have looked great all summer, and I believe that this is down to the miracle grow treatment. I certainly feel that the flower heads are bigger and brighter than I have seen them in previous years, and they look really healthy.
The container itself is easy to pour the solution into the cap, meaning spillages are unlikely. It is advisable to clean out the cap, and thoroughly wash your hands after using the solution, as it does contain a lot of chemicals, and I also give the watering can a good rinse out after using the miracle grow, just in case I need to use it for another purpose such as washing the car, as I would not want the chemicals getting anywhere other than on the plants.
Overall this is a decent feed for the plants, and I'm sure it has helped me to achieve bigger brighter blooming plants and flowers this year. Next year I think I will conduct a little experiment by not feeding some of my plants so that I have a direct comparison to enable me to see the real results.
Thanks for reading.
© L500589 2012
I have always liked gardening and would often help my parents in theirs, when we first moved into our house I did most of the garden but Mark wasn't really into that sort of thing so with all of the moving and decorating gardening sort of got pushed to one side. However the last couple of years he has helped me out in the garden and discovered that he quite enjoys it resulting in him often studying the gardening products in our local Homebase looking for anything that might help the plants along once they have been set. This year we decided to give Miracle Gro a try, we had used plant food the year before but had never tried this brand, after hearing good things about it we thought we would try it for ourselves.
The Miracle Gro comes in a bright yellow plastic bottle with a built in handle to make measuring and pouring very easy. The bottle has a paper label stuck to the front of it, this is mainly green and yellow in colour, there is a large black circle in the middle of the label with the words "Miracle- Gro" written in the centre of it in white. Part of the bottom half of the label which is bright yellow to match the bottle is covered in flower heads and tomatoes, just about this is written "All Purpose Concentrated Liquid Plant Food" this is written in green written and repeated in a different language just below although I'm not sure what this is. The only other information on the front of the bottle is right at the top where there is a picture of a flower head and the words "Grows Plants Twice as Big". The back of the bottle is covered with the same style label as the front and this contains all relevant information about the product such as fertiliser declaration which by looking at it is basically the ingredients, and also the directions of use, all of this information is written in English and a further 3 different languages. I was quite surprised to see that there were no warnings about the product on the back of the bottle as well. The bottle has a large transparent green lid which screws on and off, this also doubles up as a measuring cup.
The Miracle Gro
As most people will have probably guessed is Miracle Gro is a concentrated plant food, any advert or report about it suggests that using Miracle Gro on your plans every few days will help them to grow twice as big as those which are not fed with Miracle Gro. We haven't really had too many problems with the plants in our garden and have always been reasonably pleased with them, but as we do usually feed them with some kind of plant food were keen to see if Miracle Gro really was any better than other brands and whether it actually did make "Plants grow twice as big" as stated on the front of the bottle. The plant food inside the bottle is dark green in colour and is a liquid, this helps with pouring and mixing it with water, it has a bit of a smell to it which is not overly pleasant, but you do have to put your nose to the bottle to smell this, you cannot smell it whilst watering the plants. One thing I also noticed was that after the product has been used it does tend to dry to a gritty consistency around the top of the bottle.
Directions of Use
Using the Miracle Gro really is quit easy as you basically add the product to the water in your watering can making sure you use the right amount for the size can you are using. To feed your plants with Miracle Gro you simply -
*Use 1 cap full for balcony plants or 2 capfuls for plants in greenhouses
*Add either 1 or 2 caps (depending on where the plants are as above) to 1 gallon of water
*Water your plants in the usual way with the Miracle Gro mixed with the water making sure the roots are soaked in order to fully feed the plants
*Repeat this every 7 to 14 days
Our plants are mainly planted in pots on our patio or in hanging baskets with a few being planted in the ground, because none of them are in a greenhouse we just use 1 cap full of the Miracle Gro per can of water as our can is roughly a gallon in size. The guidelines say every 7 to 14 days so we use our Miracle Gro about every 10 days give a day or two, we have occasionally gone over the 14 days with holidays and so on but have never fed them before the 7 days is up as I am unsure as to whether this would over dose them and kill them off.
Price & Availability
Miracle Gro is available in a variety of shops including Homebase, garden centres and I have even seen it in the seasonal section of our local Tesco. We actually brought our 1 litre bottle from Homebase and it cost us £4.99, although when we purchased this some of the gardening products were on buy 2 get 1 free. Even if the Miracle Gro had not been on offer I still feel it is quite good value for money as a £4.99 bottle lasts us around 2 months, this is with as I have mentioned using it every 10 days. We only use 1 cap full at a time making the product quite long lasting, obviously the amount of time the product lasts depends on how much you use in one go, you would use more with the plants being in a greenhouse. In my opinion however the product is good value for money and works out reasonably cheap judging how long a bottle lasts us.
Personally I have been quite impressed with Miracle Gro, it is very easy to use, there is no mess at all you simply measure out a cap full of the liquid and pour it into you can of water. As for helping the plants, I would say it has made a difference, our plants have done really well this year, a lot better than last year, whether this is due to the Miracle Gro, coincidence or a bit of both, I definitely think that it has helped. I do feel that the adverts for this product are a little over exaggerated, theses show 2 plants one which is quite small and the other is massive, obviously the massive one has had Miracle Gro used on it, whilst I feel there is a difference in my plant sizes I do not think it is such a big difference as show on the adverts for the product. We have used our Miracle Gro on all of our flowers as well as our strawberry and runner bean plants, I feel that it has really helped these 2, last year we grew strawberries and beans and didn't really have a lot of success, this year we have more beans than we know what to do with, so I do think that it has helped them. I would definitely recommend Miracle Gro and we will continue to use it, it has made a difference to our plants and increased their growth, just not as much as the adverts on TV suggest, but this is something I would use in the future.
Goodness knows how our plants are coping in the current freeze. I suspect that one or two miracles will be required to be worked when ground conditions return to normal which they surely will sometime soon......please?
I was introduced to Miracle Gro by my father who has used it successfully for years. At first I thought it was an expensive option but after I had used it for the first two times, I was impressed by the new lease of life afforded to my tired and sad looking plants.
We had bought a lot of plants when we moved in and inherited a very bare garden. Some were from the bargain section of the local garden centre and having seen the effect that Miracle Gro had on other struggling plants, Miracle Gro was soon to be their saviour too.
It comes in liquid form and I have both the standard and the azalea, camellia and rhododendron variant for acid loving plants. Both packs come in a 1ltr size and cost about £4.00, available from most garden centres.
Miracle Gro is a concentrated liquid fertiliser made by The Scotts Company and it comprises a cocktail of plant nutrients which when administered in accordance with the instructions will bolster your plant and give it what it needs to survive, thrive and prosper.
It is important to follow the instructions for dilution and watering as well as appropriate aftercare as too strong a mix will not necessarily improve its performance - in fact it could hinder it or even kill your plants with kindness.
I would recommend this product but suggest you use it only for those plants which seem to need it. As a universal cure to give to all your plants it would work out very expensive but if, for example, you buy a £20 plant for a fiver because it is not looking its best, then it is certainly beneficial to invest a few quid on reviving it.
This is a well-known and popular product. If it didn't do what it claimed it wouldn't retain its position as market leader.
Successfully growing plants and flowers to their full potential relies on providing the plants with the right conditions, and all of the nutrients and minerals that they need to thrive.
Sunlight and water are (usually) provided by the weather, whilst many of the trace elements plants need will be found in the garden soil. The most important of these are phosphorus, nitrogen, and potassium, which are utilised by plants, in significant quantities and are incorporated into the plants' structure as they grow.
Other elements are required in only minute quantities, but are, nevertheless, essential and plants will not thrive in their absence. These include copper, molybdenum, iron, and zinc.
The act of gardening, unless composting is undertaken, gradually removes nutrients and elements from the soil, as dead plants are removed and discarded. Over time, the soil becomes depleted of these elements and plant growth suffers as a result. This means that many plants will grow reasonably well if placed in the right spot in the garden, in reasonable quality soil, but most gardens and their plants will benefit from supplementary feeding.
An ideal way to do this is to compost one's garden waste, but not every gardener has the time or space to devote to this task. Another easier way is to utilise a proprietary plant food.
The rather immodestly named 'Miracle Gro' all purpose concentrated plant food is such a product. The container boasts that it will 'grow plants twice as big!'; an ambitious claim, and one which I was interested in testing.
This liquid feed costs around £4.00 for a one litre, easy to carry, container. A capful (25ml) is added to a watering can (4.5 litres) of water, so each 1 litre container will last for forty uses.
The product is easy to use; the manufacturer have made a real effort to keep the product from spilling by use of a clever design for the cap/measuring device. This has an inner container into which the product is measured. The outer container captures any spills, preventing the user getting chemicals on his or her hands. This is fortunate since like many garden chemicals, Miracle Gro contains some relatively unpleasant compounds.
I can be quite clumsy; despite this, I have not managed to get any Miracle Gro on my hands, at all. After dispensing the Miracle Gro, a quick wash under the garden hose cleans the cap ready for it to be replaced on the bottle. This makes Miracle Gro quick, easy, and safe to use.
Once in the watering can, the can is filled with water, and the contents applied to the plants whilst watering. Using this approach, both the roots and the foliage are fed (although the foliage should not be watered in strong sunlight as damage to the leaves may result).
For best results, Miracle Gro should be used every week or so. The product contains all of the nutrients mentioned above, including the trace elements. This ensures that each plant gets all of the elements required for growth, whether the soil in which they have been planted, has been depleted or not.
So Miracle Gro is more convenient than composting, easy to use, and relatively safe. But does it work?
Well, this year, I used Miracle Gro extensively on some of my flower beds. Others were left unfed. My admittedly unscientific experiment had some interesting results. The borders fed with Miracle Gro produced flowers with a larger average size, and increased numbers of blooms than the unfed borders. There was certainly a difference, but it was nowhere near the 'twice as big' change that the bottle promised. This suggests to me that my soil is of reasonable quality; the unfed plants grew pretty well so those fed with Miracle Gro had only a slight advantage.
Perhaps with very poor quality soil, Miracle Gro would do 'what it says on the tin', but my experience could not confirm the product's claims.
Despite this, I was happy with the results. My flowers were big, strong, and colourful, and clearly better than those that had not been fed. The bottle lasted all summer, and at only £4.00 was good value for money, having a visible effect on my blooms.
If your plants need feeding, then you should consider Miracle Gro all purpose concentrated plant food. It's no 'miracle' but it does work.