We’ve heard a lot about what we can add to our garden soil to make it healthier for tomato plants. One of them is an egg!
But how are eggs related to planting tomatoes successfully? What can they provide for your soil and plants to ensure better growth and fruit development?
While it may be odd, using eggs may actually have its benefits, as long as it’s used correctly. So read on to learn more about using an egg when planting tomatoes!
Using an Egg When Planting Tomatoes
Back then, our grandparents didn’t have any of the modern formulas and variety of store-bought fertilizers as we do now. Instead, they relied on composting for better soil fertility and tilth.
While they used many different ingredients, one of the popular methods was to place a raw and untraced egg in the bottom of planting holes. Also, they would crush eggshells to place in the planting holes for amending soil. Up to this day, many gardeners still use this method!
But why do they do it and what makes it so advantageous?
This is because eggs have higher levels of calcium. This is a vital macronutrient ALL plants need, especially fruits and vegetables like tomato plants. The whole egg would leach calcium into your soil for better root uptake as it composts, which can prevent serious problems like the blossom end rot.
Alternatively, when you crush eggshells and add it to the planting hole, it would breakdown and release calcium back into your soil. As it breaks down and your soil delivers the calcium nutrients, the plants’ roots soak it to transfer to the plant itself, maintaining its health and fruit development.
They are an advantageous soil amendment and plant supplement because of its affordability and accessibility. You can purchase whole eggs to use from the grocery store, coming at affordable prices. Some people may even have their own mini-farm, raising chickens that lay eggs, making it an even cheaper and more convenient gardening solution!
Furthermore, you can keep any eggshells you were about to throw away after cooking eggs at home, using it for your garden instead. It’s an eco-friendlier and safer way to fertilize and supplement your garden, compared to using other chemicals. Your plants and soil still reap the health benefits such supplements offer!
The Potential Downsides of Using Eggs
While there are many benefits to using eggs and eggshells as a fertilizer or nutrient provider, it does have minor issues.
For starters, there may be an odor, especially if you don’t bury the eggs deep enough. Rotten eggs begin to stink, which can bother you or your household as you tend to the garden!
Also, using whole eggs may end up attracting unwanted pests, such as raccoons and rodents that would be attracted to the odor. They may end up digging out the plants to get to the eggs for food!
With that in mind, these are only very minor issues that can be easily remedied, not affecting your plant and soil directly in any way. Just make sure you take precautions and set up a secure place for your plants to avoid critters from getting to the eggs and other edible soil amendments.
Furthermore, take note that eggs and eggshells can only do so much. Eggshells aren’t an absolute cure to all problems, especially if your tomato plant is already suffering from blossom end rot or other diseases.
If your plant is still having growth and fruit development issues despite fertilizing it with eggs, it may be a problem with your plant or soil and its nutrient consumption. This may require replacing all your soil and/or transferring your plant to another garden bed if you have space. Besides that, your plants and soil may need more regular watering sessions, or to use other calcium supplements and soil amendments.
How to Properly Use Eggs For Planting
Now that you know more about using eggs for planting, how can you start utilizing it? Here are some tips and steps to follow to make these eggs effective for your garden and tomato plants:
- It’s best that you use eggs and/or eggshells before planting or transplanting the tomatoes to the garden bed. This is to prepare the soil and have it absorb enough calcium to transfer to the plants’ roots once it settles in its new home
- As mentioned, bury one whole egg in every planting hole. Make sure that it is buried well underneath to prevent it from smelling or attracting any nearby critters. You may also want to bury them under your tomato plant as well, which remains beneficial for soil supplementation
- Crush up some eggshells and add a handful in every planting hole. Make sure that the crushed eggshells are in the bottom of the hole, around the plant root base. I recommend that you mixed the eggshells with compost, coffee grounds, and worm castings for further amendment to give your plants even more nutrients
- You can even boil the eggshells and water or spray your plants with the liquid from boiling. This can prevent the downsides raised when using raw egg fertilizer, such as the smell or critters. It would still have enough calcium and potassium for your plants’ growth, ensuring results comparable to adding a whole egg
If you want to learn more about using eggs when planting tomatoes, this informative video can help you out:
Wrapping It Up
More eggs are being used in the garden, thanks to its many advantages, particularly from its eggshells. While eggshells aren’t instant cures to serious problems, they can help prevent it from happening with its nutrients. Just be wary of the smell it may emit, as well as the pests it may attract due to the smell.
Hopefully, this article gave you insight into the benefits of using an egg when planting tomatoes. Now that you know how eggs and eggshells work, why not give it a try and let me know what it’s done for your garden.