Blood Meal Vs Bone Meal For Tomatoes: The Ultimate Differentiation Guide

by Shelley Ryffe
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What is one of the major differences between a blood meal and a bone meal? One of the most common differences is their ingredient differences. As both sound pretty similar, people get confused about which is more effective.

Well, blood meal and bone meal are soil amendments that increase nutrients in the soil, and you can also use them together. Still, if you want to choose one between them and wonder which one is better for your tomato plants, then you need to know the difference between blood meal vs bone meal for tomatoes.

Apart from the ingredient differences, there are many more differences like working efficiency, best usability, efficacy, and price, which we will discuss in this article.

a quick overview for blood meal vs bone meal
A Quick Overview for Blood Meal vs Bone Meal

Blood Meal Vs Bone Meal For Tomatoes

Major DifferencesBlood MealBone Meal
Ingredient DifferencesIt has more nitrogen.It has more phosphorus and calcium.
Working EfficiencyAn effective way to replenish nitrogen in the soilAn effective way to replenish calcium and phosphorus in the soil
Best UsabilityGood for lettuce, corn, squash, cabbage, cucumbers, and some other vegetable plantsGood for rose bushes, flowering plants, and bulbs
EfficacyIt is a slow-releasing fertilizer.The powder form of bone meal is a quick-releasing fertilizer.

Now we will elaborately discuss all the major differences between a blood meal and bone meal fertilizer.

Ingredient Differences Between The Blood Meal And The Bone Meal

The blood meal is powdered and dried animal blood, which boosts soil nitrogen levels. It has higher levels of nitrogen than the bone meal but less calcium and phosphorus than the bone meal. As tomato plants are heavy nitrogen feeders, blood meal is crucial for them. Also, the blood meal is excellent for your young tomato plants to encourage truss production and foliage.

On the other hand, bone meal generally indicates ground animal bones, which improves soil phosphorus and calcium levels. Bone meal also has small amounts of iron, zinc, magnesium, and other important elements that plants need. This fertilizer is useful for tomato plants later in the season.

When trusses start to form, adding bone meal fertilizer to the soil might promote more flowering, especially on cordon tomatoes. However, if you need potassium for your tomato plant, then you should go for a combination of fish, blood, and bone.

This mixture can be applied twice during the growing season, once when tomatoes are planted outside, and once when flowers start to appear. Also, you must remember that both blood and bone meals don’t have potassium ingredients.

Comparing Working Efficiency Between The Blood Meal And The Bone Meal

An effective way to replenish nitrogen in the soil is with blood meal, which is a byproduct of the slaughterhouse. The nutrient that fluctuates most in the soil is nitrogen. Without sufficient nitrogen, your tomato plants will probably wither and die.

On the contrary, excessive nitrogen can be poisonous to tomato plants, so it is crucial to always test the soil before putting any amendments in it.

If you have had the soil tested and the result displays low levels of nitrogen, then you can apply the blood meal to help solve that. Blood meal will be helpful if you do replantation in your same garden bed every year because plants have a propensity to drain the soil. Also, it’s best to know the blood meal mixing ratio with water.

Also, blood meal will increase your soil’s acidity, reducing the pH value. It keeps plants flowering and fruiting and promotes lush green foliage. In addition, the intense smell of blood meal fertilizer can deter ground squirrels, deer, or moles.

If your soil testing demonstrates a shortage of phosphorus and calcium, then adding bone meal to your soil will help your plants grow and flourish. Keep in mind that pH testing is essential since if the soil contains a pH of seven or more, bone meal will be comparatively ineffective. You should address the acidity level first.

Additionally, high-nitrogen fertilizers such as rotten manure can be balanced out by combining high-nitrogen soil fertilizers with bone meal. Bone meals can strengthen healthy root growth in plants. It also prevents stunted growth, benefits plants’ root development, and encourages cell division.

The inclusion of bone meal in the soil can rejuvenate plant growth and promote flowering. In addition, by increasing the concentration of beneficial soil microbes, bone meal improves the overall structure of the soil.

Best Usability Comparison Of These Two Soil Amendments

Along with tomatoes, many other plants are heavy feeders of nitrogen, such as lettuce, corn, squash, cabbage, and cucumbers. So, blood meal fertilizer is good for these plants. The blood meal is also effective for some other vegetable plants that heavily consume nitrogen. These include asparagus, melons, broccoli, eggplant, okra, peppers, and pumpkins.

When we talk about using bone meal for plants, there are not many plants to talk about. Bone meal is good for rose bushes, flowering plants, and bulbs.

Efficacy Differentiation Of Blood Meal And Bone Meal Additives

The blood meal can be utilized as a liquid fertilizer because it is water-soluble. It acts rapidly in the garden to solve nitrogen deficiency. A single application of blood meal can feed plants effectively for 6-8 weeks.

Also, blood meal is generally a slow-releasing soil amendment and does not assist a plant in desperate need of nitrogen. It is recommended to add the blood meal to your garden bed before winter so that the soil can slowly absorb the nutrients and be better ready for the forthcoming season.

Bone meal is available in granular or powder form. Granular bone meal acts almost similar to blood meal as it is more of a slow-release fertilizer. It is an excellent option if you apply it to the topmost part of the soil and let it gradually deliver a continuous stream of nutrients to the plants.

However, if the plants are in dire need of calcium or phosphorus, you can apply the powdered bone meal. This powder will dissolve in water and rapidly supply the plants with what they require.

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Price Differences Between Blood Meal And Bone Meal

After researching, we have found that blood meal’s price ranges from 14$ to 119$. On the other hand, the price of a bone meal is generally 9$ to 100$. So, the bone meal is cheaper compared to the blood meal.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is the blood meal good for tomatoes?

Yes, the blood meal is good for tomatoes. It is super high in protein and nitrogen, making it an excellent fertilizer for several plants, including tomatoes. The blood meal additive has an oxygen component of about 13%, which aids tomato plants in producing more fruit. It can even aid in deterring pests like moles and deer from consuming your tomato plants.

Do tomato plants need a bone meal?

Bone meal is an extremely useful organic fertilizer for tomato plants. It has vital nutrients for plants, including phosphorus and nitrogen. If you apply bone meal to your tomato plants, the plants will deliver larger fruit because of the greater levels of phosphorus. Phosphorus aids plants in developing strong roots, while nitrogen aids plants in producing lush foliage.

Do tomatoes like blood and bone?

Yes, tomatoes like both the blood meal and the bone meal. It is because they have a lot of vital nutrients for tomato plants, including phosphorus, calcium, nitrogen, and some other important nutrients. Tomato plants flourish when grown in organic, nutrient-rich soils. The soil can become organic and nutrient-rich when you add a mixture of blood meal and bone meal in it.

What’s better blood meal or bone meal?

Both blood meal and bone meal are ideal substitutes that can aid your garden to be more productive and stronger. A blood meal is considered a suitable additive for organic gardens. When it comes to utilizing gardening products derived from animals, the safest option is organic. So, according to us, you should go for the blood meal.


Finally, we can say that choosing one additive between the blood and bone meal for tomato plants is a tough decision. While both can be useful to your soil, it is crucial to test the soil before using it so you might determine your soil’s requirements. If your soil lacks phosphorus and calcium, then the bone meal additive is one of the finest ways to get them into your soil.

If the soil is deficient in nitrogen, then the blood meal additive will fulfill your needs. There are also some other factors that you should consider before choosing between the blood meal and the bone meal for your tomato plants. We are hopeful that this article on blood meal vs bone meal for tomatoes has helped you now.

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