I am in northern OH, and I am using raised beds with 1/3 vermiculite, 1/3 peatmoss and 1/3 compost. My transplants have been growing but nothing to brag about by any means. The trunks aren't thick and there is not a lot of foliage. I visited my father in law and his look 2 to 3 times my size. His soil is much healthier from years of composting etc.
I feel like my soil just simply doesn't have any nutrients even tho the compost was supposed to be good - but I now doubt it. I have homemade compost that is from the winter but I don't think it is 100% "finished".
It's been cool here weather wise and Spring was late, so that might be on my side.
Some plants have a flower or two and one or two tomatoes.
Question is -
1. what do I need to add to the soil to help these plants along? They are about 12-14 inches tall and thin. Some are smaller! The branches aren't really spreading out. I have Blood meal and a generic Tomato fertilizer with low Nitrogen (2 I think). I can't work it into the soil b/c I'm afraid I'll disrupt roots etc.
2. Can I use my compost to add nutrients even tho it is not fully finished - meaning it's not a nice perfect earth dirt - its still very moist, but broken down.
3. Lastly, since it is raised beds and I have good drainage, would it be more likely that any fertilizer added would deplete/drain away quicker than if in the ground? I'm wondering with all the tons of rain we've had if that is part of the lack of nutrients. I know everything relies on good soil.
I'd appreciate any responses. I'm so very disappointed and disheartened. I did these from seed and the seedlings were awesome - just like the stores.
Thanks in advance.