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Fertilizing and Watering

Subject:  Thoughts on using Diatomaceous Earth in soil?

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I hear its high in silica and also contains 15 essential trace minerals including phosphorous, selenium, calcium, sodium, potassium, magnesium, copper, zinc and iron. What are your thoughts on adding this to your soil? has anyone been using it? you can buy it for pretty cheap, also its a non toxic way to kill pest. thoughts?

2/19/2020 1:48:47 AM

Little Ketchup

Grittyville, WA

It may be acidic or basic depending on the source. If you can get the ph to neutral it should not be a problem, if your soil is deficient in those things. I don't know if its the cheapest or best option but maybe it could be useful.

2/19/2020 2:33:37 AM

big moon

Bethlehem CT

I used it once. I used it for the silica. I don't think it is a bad idea. Just make sure you get the right kind. (not the stuff that goes in pool filters) The stuff I used was food grade. (apparently it is used in food) I got it from some friends who bought it for me cheap.

2/19/2020 1:13:06 PM


Syracuse, NY

DE harms insects because it gets between pieces of their carapace and cuts them up and dries them out.

Worms are not insects and although a pile of dry DE might be rather excruciating to them, it won't harm them in the soil.

2/24/2020 1:07:09 AM


Syracuse, NY

lol---time for bed! i meant to edit/add a comment and I hit POst Reply instead, lol---well, my first concern about the DE was in the above answer, so - Go, Wormies! eg

2/24/2020 1:09:06 AM


Guelph, Ontario

It has no fertilizer effects.

It does not break down, At least not in our lifetime.

2/24/2020 11:18:28 AM

big moon

Bethlehem CT

Irischap, Is silica not an essential nutrient? Many pumpkin growers have found silica to be a very important nutrient in the growing of giant pumpkins.

2/25/2020 6:42:22 AM

big moon

Bethlehem CT

I found this study that was done to be interesting.


2/25/2020 7:00:45 AM

Little Ketchup

Grittyville, WA

I am confused about that also. It cant be 100 percent solubke . . .its like bone? People still use bone meal but its not very soluble. Run some side by side tests before spending too much money on it. And realize that if it either corrects your ph or throws off your ph... that will probably show a more obvious affect than any soluble silica. I think silica does help cucurbits but I am no expert on which nutrient sources that might be better and cheaper. I have tried to dust my plants with it but other than aphids the insects here come out at night and most nights here hit dew point and when its slightly damp... probably the bugs dont get sufficiently coated in it.

2/25/2020 3:48:16 PM

Total Posts: 9 Current Server Time: 2/24/2024 7:11:39 AM
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