Recently, while looking up the most effective way to add eggshells to my tomatoes for calcium, I came across some other great gardening tips on You Grow Girl. They recommended putting matchsticks in the soil under pepper plants because peppers love sulfur. Which got me thinking… guess what the main ingredient in my Hydrangea bluing formula is? Sulfur! And I already use it on my fuchsias and blueberries. (A word of caution – some bluing formulas may be aluminum sulfate and not sulfur, which are not the same thing, and aluminum sulfate can easily burn plants.)
It turns out that epsom salts are also very effective, as they contain both magnesium and sulfur – especially as a spray solution (1tbsp per gal of water). It is supposed to increase chlorophyll production and also help plants process the phosphorus and nitrogen better. Many reports say to use this solution when the peppers first start to blossom. When I planted mine, I also put down a layer of dolomite to provide calcium (and magnesium), because peppers, like tomatoes and eggplants, are very susceptible to blossom end rot.
Extra nutrients are more essential in container gardening than traditional gardening because of the limited amount of soil/planting medium. One of the things that I think has made me most successful in gardening is learning how to cater to each plants family’s specific need, which again, is more important with containers. This sounds like a daunting task, but really it’s just been an ongoing learning experience, as well as one giant experiment.