If you have a water feature in your garden or are growing a water garden, then use cornmeal there. Use it at a rate of five pounds per 1,000 square feet to tie up excess phosphorus in the water. It also helps to keep the pH balance in the water so that algae cannot start growing. Since this treatment is most effective when the cornmeal is at the bottom of the water, consider putting the cornmeal in a burlap or mesh bag along with some rocks. Then, toss the bag in the water.
If you notice brown spots on your leaves, then they may be suffering from some sort of spot fungus. While you should avoid watering the leaves when you give thirsty plants a drink, and insect can cause leaf spot fungus, many cases respond very well to cornmeal. Aim to apply the cornmeal at the rate of two pounds per 1,000 square feet. While whole ground cornmeal usually works best, you can use just about any type of cornmeal. You can also make a cornmeal tea by combining one cup of cornmeal to five gallons of water and spraying it on affected plants. While you are at it, you can also spray this treatment on brown spots on your yard to green them back up. In both cases, you should water after applying the cornmeal.
While you did a lot to stop weeds from growing by infusing cornmeal-based compost into your soil before planting your garden, if you spot weeds, then you can use cornmeal again. Try applying two pounds per 100 square feet. Try choosing a period when it is not going to rain to apply this mixture. Then, let your garden dry out if possible.
There are many different ways that cornmeal can be used in your garden. The great news is that using it allows jobs to be completed without risking harming pets or children. Here are some ideas on using cornmeal in your garden that you may want to consider.
When you are getting your garden ready for planting, then make sure to incorporate cornmeal into the ground. You should aim for a rate of about 30 pounds of whole ground or horticultural cornmeal per 1,000 square feet. Your plants will appreciate the extra nutrients that they can get from the cornmeal. Incorporating cornmeal will also help to keep weeds from getting started. Plants grown in gardens where cornmeal is incorporated into the soil often experience fewer diseases.
Compost is a great way to add nutrients for your plants to your garden. It also helps release those nutrients at a rate that your plants can use them. Compost also helps the ground retain moisture so that your plants do not dry out in the hot summer sun. Composting can also help remove toxins from the soil while leaving it in great condition to support the plant’s roots. When you are making your compost, be sure to incorporate cornmeal at the rate of one pound per cubic yard. It will help your materials break down faster by supporting beneficial microbes, and it will also help speed up the composting process. If you got a late start on making your compost, then increase the amount of cornmeal as it will speed up the process.
Using cornmeal is especially effective in controlling ants. Simply pour the cornmeal where you see the ants moving. They will carry the cornmeal back to their nest where they will feast on it. Since their systems cannot handle gluten, they will starve to death.
Treat Leaf Spot Fungus
There are many different ways to use cornmeal in your garden. The great news is that your garden will look beautiful and you will not be harming the environment.
Be sure to follow the application instructions on the package and apply before weeds start to grow. Sometimes this can be a very tight window, but is best done in early spring. In flower and vegetable beds where seeds are sown, be sure to wait to apply at least until the seeds are grown up a bit. If applied too early, it can prevent these seeds from sprouting.
Cornmeal gluten is also a popular method to control ants. Pouring it wherever you see ants traveling is the best option. They will pick up the gluten and take it to the nest where they will feed on it. Since the ants cannot digest this cornmeal product, they will starve to death. It may take up to a week or so before you see your ant population dwindling.
Researchers at Iowa State University discovered by accident that cornmeal gluten acts as an herbicide while they were doing disease research. They saw that corn gluten meal kept grass and other seeds, such as crabgrass, dandelions, and chickweed from sprouting.
It is important to note that cornmeal gluten is only effective against seeds, not plants that are mature, and is most effective with corn gluten having at least 60% proteins in it. For annual weeds that are growing, plain cornmeal products will not kill it. These weeds include:
How to Use Cornmeal Gluten in the Garden
Perennial weeds will not be damaged either. They pop back up year after year because their roots survive under the soil over winter. Some of these include:
However, cornmeal gluten will stop the seeds that these weeds shed in the summer so that the weeds will not increase. With consistent use of gluten meal products, these weeds will gradually decline.
Many people use corn gluten on their lawns, but it can be safely and effectively used in gardens as well. Using gluten cornmeal in gardens is a great way to keep weed seeds from sprouting and will not damage existing plants, shrubs, or trees.
Gluten Cornmeal as Weed Killer
Cornmeal gluten, commonly referred to as corn gluten meal (CGM), is the by-product of corn wet milling. It is used to feed cattle, fish, dogs, and poultry. Gluten meal is known as a natural substitute for chemical pre-emergent herbicides. Using this cornmeal as weed killer is a great way to eradicate weeds without the threat of toxic chemicals. If you have pets or small children, gluten meal is a great option.
Tip: If you have large areas to cover, you can try a spray form for ease of application. Apply every four weeks, or after heavy rains, during the growing season to maintain effectiveness.
The biggest mistake that most people take with this natural weed remedy is running out to buy cornmeal from the grocery store shelves. The type of cornmeal that you eat is not the same as what you need for weed killing purposes.
What is Cornmeal vs. Corn Gluten Meal?
There have been multiple studies on the use of corn gluten meal as an effective weed killer with mixed results. The primary issue with this method is the difficulty of applying it at just the right time to knock out the weed seeds.
Does It Work on All Weeds?
Since corn gluten meal has high levels of protein, nitrogen, and oils, it is also used for lawn fertilization and weed control purposes. It is sold in lawn and gardening stores rather than at your local grocery store.