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Nitrogen is a primary nutrient for plant growth, and is responsible for plants' green (vegetative) foliage. Nitrogen is necessary for the success of your garden. Make sure there is an adequate supply of Nitrogen in the soil before planting or transplanting into the field. Nitrogen is most important in the early stages, during the formation of leaves, and general growing period. It is less important during flower formation and fruit setting (when plants rely on Phosphorus).
Over-applying Nitrogen can “burn” plants (root damage that shows symptoms above ground), so stay within recommended application rates. Organic fertilizers are less likely to “burn” as compared to their synthetic counterparts. Excessive Nitrogen in your crops can actually lead to nitrate poisoning if you or your animals eat these greens. Some of your Nitrogen needs may be met by organic matter as it decomposes. Because this Nitrogen is difficult to test chemically it can only be taken into account as an estimate. In general, higher organic matter means higher potential Nitrogen release. In soils with over 5% organic matter (see your soil test results), consider reducing Nitrogen amendments by 1/4. Order a soil analysis to find out what your Nitrogen level is and what your Nitrogen needs are.Learn More About Nitrogen Fertilizers