Having blueberries in your backyard not only provides a healthy snack or meal side dish, but the plants also provide a colorful addition to your backyard landscape. Taking care of blueberries requires that they get enough sun, water and fertilizer. It's important not to fertilize blueberries too much, however, because they can die. Blueberries love bone meal fertilizer, and this guide explains how to make your own fertilizer with leftover chicken bones from your lunch.
Step 1: Collect Your Supplies
Once you've finished eating your chicken, you'll need a few supplies to make the bone meal. Here is the list of what you'll need:
- a large pot
- a cookie sheet
- a freezer bag
- a towel
- a hammer
- a rake
- a small kitchen scale
- a plastic cup
- garden hose
Step 2: Boil the Bones
Remove the remaining meat and fat from the bones until they have nothing left on them. Then place them in the pot and fill it with water. Boil the bones in the water for several hours until they become soft enough to break with ease.
Step 3: Bake the Bones
Spread the bones out on a cookie sheet and bake them at 200 degrees until they are dry, or about an hour. Take the cookie sheet out of the oven and set it somewhere to cool.
Step 4: Smash the Bones
Place the bones in the freezer bag and wrap the towel around the bag. Take the bag to a hard surface such as the driveway and hit the bag multiple times with the hammer. Continue hitting the bag until the bones become fine particles.
Step 5: Rake the Mulch
Rake the mulch away from the base of the blueberry plant and the surrounding area.
Step 6: Apply the Bone Meal
Measure out a couple ounces of bone meal into the plastic cup. Sprinkle the bone meal around the blueberry plant, making sure that you place some all the way around the plant and not just in one spot. An even distribution prevents too much fertilizer in one area.
Step 7: Replace the Mulch
Rake the mulch back into place over the bone meal.
Step 8: Water the Bush
Water the bush generously to help the bone meal work its way into the ground.
Fertilize your blueberry plants once in the early spring and again during the late spring season. Keep the bone meal in a plastic container so that you can use it the next time you fertilize. Ask your landscape designer which plants besides blueberries to use bone meal fertilizer on. For more information about landscaping issues, contact Done Right Landscapes.