Updated: Aug 11
Part of being sustainable is finding new uses for things you may already have in your home. Doing this will achieve the permaculture principle of getting a second yield.
Molasses are commonly associated as a healthier sweetener, due to their high mineral content. Not many are aware that it makes for excellent garden fertilizer.
When sugarcanes or sugar beets are refined into beets, it results in producing a substance known as molasses sometimes called black treacle.
The amount of sugar and the method of extracting the sugar alongside the sugarcane or sugar beets cause the molasses produced to vary.
There are countless uses of molasses in different industries. For instance, molasses can be used for rum distillation, barbeque sauces, preparing whole-grain bread, gingerbread, cookies, and pies.
One of the many uses of molasses also includes its use as a fertiliser.
Molasses can help plants grow because it contains:
20% vitamin B6
Also, the sugar contents in molasses include glucose, sucrose, and fructose, and a host of other micronutrients. Microbes living in the soil near plants love sugar. So, using molasses as a fertiliser will mean feeding these microbes, which will aid your plants to grow better.
How to use molasses as a fertilizer?
If you want to use molasses as a fertilizer, you will need unsulfured, blackstrap molasses.
This is vital since sulfured molasses can kill the microbes in the soil, which, in turn, could slow down the growth of plants.
Molasses can complement organic liquid fertilisers, such as alfalfa meal tea, compost tea, kelp, etc., and boost the overall performance.
The addition of molasses in organic fertilisers means that the healthy microbes in the soil have enriched food. As a result, their growth is enhanced.
Here are some ways in which you can use molasses as a fertiliser.
You can spray the molasses onto your plants. To do this, take the unsulfured, blackstrap molasses and mix them with some warm water. This will ensure that the thick consistency of the molasses does not end up blocking the sprayer of the spray bottle you use.
If you are individually applying the molasses to your plants, take a clean bowl and pour in a gallon of water. Add two tablespoons of the molasses into the bowl and stir thoroughly to combine the two ingredients properly. Use the same ratio for all the plants. Pour any residual mixture onto the soil around the plant. You can also combine this mixture with compost for growing your plant
The benefits of using molasses as a fertilizer
There are several benefits of using molasses as a fertilizer. While some of them were mentioned above, the others are listed below.
1. Helps the strength of your garden against pests
Molasses increases the general strength and vigor of the plants. As a result, the plant's own defenses are better at dealing with pests.
2. Molasses is non-toxic
As we have already seen, molasses is a by-product of refining sugarcane and sugar beets into sugar. So, there are no toxic ingredients involved in molasses, which is perfect for plants.
3. Molasses are cost-effective
Compared to all the fertilizers (both chemical and natural), molasses costs less. You can cover more ground at preferably less cost while gaining further benefits. As a result, it is cost-effective and saves money.
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