Hoof and Horn Meal
for top dressing with organic nitrogen

When hungry greens need more than your soil can provide a top dressing of nitrogen will help.

Analysis - nitrogen = 14, phosphorus = 2, potassium = 0

Source - from animal hooves and horns obtained in slaughterhouses. I have not located a supplier on the Internet. It is probably available locally.

Application Rate - 5oz per square yard at start of season, and 1oz per square yard when transplanting vegetables.

Release Rate - medium speed after 4 - 6 weeks for about 12 months.

Action On Plants - this is a high nitrogen feed for plants that produce large amounts of leaf, especially vegetables and corn. Nitrogen is needed to make leaf protein. So plants that make large amounts of green leaf can benefit from top dressings of Hoof and Horn. Examples include brassicas such as cabbage and kale, as well as lettuce, courgettes, and rhubarb. High quality leaves are also important for corn / maize to produce good crop yields.

You may consider using Hoof and Horn if you garden over poor soil. Of course the answer is to build fertility with bulky organic matter. But top dressing may be a stop-gap measure when growing hungry vegetables.

Hoof and Horn nitrogen content is comparible with Blood Meal. But the slower release rate of the former is better timed with plant uptake rates. At normal application rates it will not be damaging or wasteful.

Hoof and Horn also contains phophates for root growth. Application on ground prior to transplanting will help new root development.

I don't advise applying it around decorative flowers or small soft fruits, as high nitrogen content will favour leaf production as opposed to flowers.

Hoof and Horn is Used For

  • Use on greens after overwintering.
  • Use on hungry greens to supplement poor soil.
  • Use before transplanting green vegetables.
  • Use instead of manure with rhubarb plants etc...
  • Could be used around large fruit trees of Nectarine, Peach and others.
  • High nitrogen feed - it is slower acting and far more acceptable than blood meal.

Hoof and Horn has a strong smell but it dissipates quickly.

Further Information

Read about top dressing lawns.


For more information on making / using shrub fertilizer try these books.
book coverHow to make
soil and
save earth -
Allan Shepherd




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