Fertilizer- Beer

Q: I’m curious about your webpage denouncing beer, soda and ammonia as fertilizer. I don’t disagree with your soda and ammonia thoughts but the carbohydrates in beer might be useful. I am into bonsai and my well-learned sensei says that beer will do a tree good!

A: One of my rules for success is to NEVER argue with a sensei, particularly when he is correct! Beer does contain carbohydrates that can break down into plant nutrients. In a localized spot, like a bonsai root zone, beer could supply significant plant food. It’s up to you to figure out how much beer to use without harming the roots with alcohol or attracting fungus gnats. It’s when beer is suggested as a lawn tonic that I demur. Unless you use many gallons of beer per thousand square feet, the lawn won’t get much benefit.