Garden Myths - Learn the truth about gardening

Vitamin B1 for Plants

Vitamin B1 is that miracle drug that makes all plants grow bigger especially after transplanting. It is added to several different kinds of fertilizer and plant additives. Guess what – it doesn’t work.

vitamin b1 for plants

Vitamin b1 for plants

Photo Source: Farmer Fred Rant

The history of this myth is quite interesting and told in detail here. In 1930 a scientist noticed that vitamin B1 stimulated root growth in a petri dish in the lab. A few more tests and people started becoming convinced that it was the greatest thing since sliced bread. In 1939 Better Homes and Gardens published a report that showed vitamin B1 resulted in huge rose flowers and giant daffodils among others. The myth was launched and fed on itself; after all if Better Homes and Gardens says it is true – by golly it is true!

By 1942 even the original author of the study admitted that vitamin B1 had no positive affect on plant growth and said “It is now certain, however, that additions of vitamin B1 to intact growing plants have no significant or useful place in horticultural or agricultural practice” But it was too late. The public knew it worked, and manufacturers were selling it like hot cakes.

Products still contain it today even though the science community has known it does not work for over 70 years.

Don’t be duped.

Robert Pavlis
Editor of
I live in southern Ontario, Canada, zone 5 and have been gardening a long time. Besides writing and speaking about gardening, I own and operate a 6 acre private garden called Aspen Grove Gardens which now has over 3,000 perennials, grasses, shrubs and trees. Yes--I am a plantaholic!

I hope you find Garden Myths an educational site that helps you understand your garden better.

4 Responses to 'Vitamin B1 for Plants'

  1. Myo Win says:

    I am a gardener and I want to know how to use vitamin b1 for plants?

  2. David Nevotti says:

    I’m glad I found this before I went out and wasted money on nothing. My wife and I are planting our first rose garden this year and wanted to make sure they are successful and healthy plants. Thanks for the information. Dave N

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