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Fertilizing and Watering

Subject:  Natural sugars

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26 West

50 Acres

What natural sugars do you use for feeding plants. I use farm grade sugar beet meal to feed the worms. I have had more worms in my garden since using it. I have also used Agava Nectar (cactus sugar) molasses and bud maple sugar in my brews. Jim

12/2/2020 8:47:54 AM

Little Ketchup

Grittyville, WA

I read that corn plants put more sugar into the ground than any other crop so if you like corn it apparently can add signoficant sugar exudates to the soil. But then you have to give it a spot in your rotation and prevent the soil from life from going downhill while waiting for the next crop. Beets sounds like a great idea. I would be wary of the roundup ready ones though. I have a suspicion that the roundup ready alfala isnt quite as healthy. Zero evidence though... just my personal suspicion...

12/2/2020 10:30:33 PM

Little Ketchup

Grittyville, WA

The bees are always creating sweet waste products you saying I should spray my plants directly... or is this just trying to keep the soil microbes digestion going.

12/2/2020 10:34:52 PM


Guelph, Ontario

Plants do not take up sugars. They make them from basic elements. C, H, O which they get from carbon dioxide and water.

Sugars in brews feed bacteria.

And it is irrelevant what source is. White table sugar works just as well as any source.

12/3/2020 12:47:12 PM


Alex, IN

Check out pages 41-44 of this report. Not a ton of information. But some different product ideas and what they do. *This is geared towards corn and soybean production*


12/3/2020 1:04:16 PM

Engel's Great Pumpkins and Carvings

Menomonie, WI (mail@gr8pumpkin.net)

Molasses...is add with what ever I foliar feed

12/4/2020 6:46:55 AM


Guelph, Ontario

I looked at the beckshybrids.com book.

They tested several products. Products all contained a number of ingredients. There was one with only dextrose ( a form of sugar) and it yielded an increase of 2.2 bu/ac on an average yield of 220 bu/ac. So an increase of 1%. This would appear to just be a random improvement. No data available but suspect that this is not even close to being a reliable study.

I have looked at a number of published articles on this, no improvement to plant with sugar added to soil

Plants take in ions, ( mostly elements, but some cations of several elements) and some through semipermeable membrane and others through specific ion pumps. There is no means available in plant anatomy to permit absorption of sugars.

Sugars is primary output of photosynthesis . They consist only of C, N and O , which come from carbon dioxide and water. Not from soil.

In any case providing sugar to plants is kind of like binging coal to Newcastle. Any absorbed , if possible, would be a tiny fraction of what plant produces.

As to stimulating bacteria activity, yes, as bacteria eat the sugar. And when sugar gone, they die. Soils always are at maximum capacity for microorganisms in soil as their life cycle is about 20 minutes or less.

12/4/2020 8:52:15 AM

26 West

50 Acres

Thank you for the input. Jim

12/4/2020 9:01:58 AM

Little Ketchup

Grittyville, WA

Interesting. I am wanting to accelerate the decomposition of old hay but to stuff that eats cellulose its just a great big pile of sugar so why add more I guess.

Before naysaying it completely, a lot of the soil organisms must go dormant rather than die. Completely sterile soil is terrible right...? So you do want soil biology and as far as I know the humic/ carbon remains are very healthy for multiple reasons. Everything from chelating good minerals to neutralizing bad ones, boosting CEC, also the breakdown of organics can even boost CO2 near the ground, at least when there is no breeze. High bushel yield corn has been studied in this regard. Not trying to contradict the truth of anything that has been said just trying to figure things out. Brix is an important factor in fruit size/ development.. But plants really arent designed to absorb sugar, so any possible benefit would have to be indirect (via some 3rd party mechanism).

12/4/2020 8:54:17 PM


Jericho Vermont

I have been using feed grade molasses in our drench fertilizer program for over 15 years. Good to feed all the soil beneficial microbes throughout the season.

12/5/2020 8:55:55 AM


Syracuse, NY

Wow! So I have been doing something right!
1 quart per 55 gallons H2O, about a week apart, over the course of a weekend - it was free and i love the smell of it---eg

12/6/2020 3:12:09 PM

Total Posts: 11 Current Server Time: 4/18/2024 10:37:58 AM
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