I do a thing that I like to call Fertilizer Fridays. Basically amend the soil before planting. Once they start sprouting true leaves, I will do some bone meal and/or garden tone. Then once they put on a little growth, I liquid fertilize with a mixture of fish fertilizer and a dash of miracle grow. It works on moat of our plants from acidic loving to alkaline loving.
I had an elderly neighbor that was a botanist and who had spent nearly 70yrs of his life trucking up n down CA running a plant nursery in SoCal. He had the stories re CA history. Wed have a sit on the porch and hed tell stories while drinking Louis XIV and smokin MMJ -he had terminal cancer and was in hospice.
He gave me his dirt recipe one day and I keep it as his legacy.
10# charcoal burned to ash in a chimney starter (no fluid)
1 bag of garden or amendment sand(not beach)
1 bag (yard) of peat moss
1 bag (yard) of potting soil (or local dirt if its good loam)
In a mixer add the sand and get it damp. Add the ash so it sticks to the damp sand. Add the peat moss then add the soil.
Mix it all well.
This isnt a recipe for apartment dwelling but w a patch of land and a corner for your dirt its feasible.
We mix in some ash from our fire pit into our “compost pile”. If nothing else, it’s a good way to get rid of the ash.
The “compost pile” is a large pile of old wood that was on piled up on the property when we bought it. My guess is that was left over from taking trees down/trimming. It is too rotten to burn, but it was still too hard to mash up into the soil.
We put up some snow fence in a square and piled the wood up. It’s been composting for several years now and it’s getting to the point where we can start to use it as soil. The pile is much flatter now.
We might get a “smaller” barrel for table food scraps/coffee grounds for real composting. The wife has some landscaping plans so we might have a need for rich, cheap soil.