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Your houseplants will go bananas for this DIY fertilizer

DIY banana peel fertilizer for healthy plants and planet

By converting your banana peels into fertilizer, you’ve created the world’s smallest circular economy, right in your own kitchen. 

Fruit and veggie scraps like banana peels comprise all kinds of organic matter that your house plants will love. Banana peels, in particular, are great for gardens (inside and out) because they encompass three key ingredients found in any good quality fertilizer: calcium, phosphorus and potassium.

Did you know banana's boast 42 percent potassium? Bananas are Mother Nature's highest organic source of potassium available to your garden, for free. 

What's the point of potassium for plants?

Plants that are low in potassium deficient are like humans without enough protein in their diet. Potassium starved plants do not have sufficient energy to develop strong roots and stalks or stems. The edges around older leaves will also appear burned.

By sharing the peel — a part of the banana you’d likely toss anyway — you’ll substantially improve your plant’s growth cycle and lower your carbon footprint to boot. Let’s have a look at how much your banana peel can do when it's not it the garbage: 

How bananas benefit your indoor and outdoor plants

How potassium from bananas benefit your indoor and outdoor plants

  • Potassium helps to move important nutrients and water between plant cells. 
  • Plants that are high in potassium have stronger stems and healthier immune systems.
  • Flowering plants love banana peels and may produce better quality fruits as a way of saying thank you. 
  • Potassium will make your plants more resistant to dry spells. 
  • Banana peels increase the protein content of your plants, which keeps them strong and healthy as they grow. 

Bananas are also high in calcium, which may prevent blossom end rot in tomatoes. Manganese in banana peels aids photosynthesis, while sodium helps water flow between cells. Finally, banana peels contain absolutely no nitrogen. While plants do need nitrogen, too much will cause lower fruit yields.

A DIY fertilizer for your favourite plants

To make your own banana peel fertilizer at home, you can simply bury peels in the soil around your plants or brew banana peel tea by steeping peels in a jar for a couple of weeks. I prefer to feed dried peels to my plants. Here's my favourite DIY fertilizer recipe: 

  1. Collect some banana peels, preferably from ripe bananas. 
  2. Dry whole or cut peels in the sun for about two days or a microwave oven for three minutes. 
  3. Once they appear black and crispy, you can easily crush them into a powder sprinkled your soil. Only a teaspoon every 15 days is the recommended application. 

Nearly all food scraps go straight to waste, a North American norm that is really quite careless. When we throw away food, we undermine all the energy and water it takes to grow, harvest, transport, and package it. Food scraps in a landfill rots and produce toxic methane gasses while food scraps in your soil produce valuable nutrients and lush, life-giving plants.