Organic Fertilizers Vrs Chemical
Organic fertilizers are of two types, those that occur naturally and those that are processed. Organic fertilizers that occur naturally include manure, worm castings, fish emulsion, slurry, seaweed, peat and guano while processed organic fertilizers include compost, Cottonseed meal, bone meal, amino acids, humic acid, sewage sludge, and seaweed extracts. Organic fertilizers are made out of naturally occurring materials while chemical fertilizers are made from chemicals such as urea, ammonium chloride, phosphate,and nitrate.
Today we are prepared to pay a premium at whole food stores for those foods that are grown using organic fertilizer. This is due to the fact that many of the chemical fertilizers not only impart the chemicals into the vegetables that are grown using them, but also have been proven to damage the environment.
The main difference between using chemical fertilizers over organic fertilizers is that chemical fertilizers can be quickly absorbed by the plants while organic fertilizers work more slowly over time. They need to be broken down by the organisms in the soil before the plants can absorb them.
Organic fertilizers add natural nutrients to increasing organic soil matter which in turn encourages the growth of soil organisms helping the plants develop healthier roots. Overall organics can improve the soil structure as well as water retaining capacity reducing soil crusting issues. This also reduces soil erosion from wind and water.
Organic fertilizer can be found in both dry as well as liquid form. Almost all organic fertilizer has a wide array of nutrients and when applying dry organic fertilizer it is best to broadcast it in the soil and then hoe or rake it so that it gets properly mixed with the soil. Liquid organic fertilizer can be used to give the plants a quick boost since they trickle down into the root zone quickly.
The advantage of chemical fertilizers is that they deliver immediate supply of the 3 essential nutrients while the organics have a much slower delivery and the distribution of nutrients is not equal.
Keep in mind though that chemical fertilizers change soil fertility and have high acid content. Also organic fertilizers can be prepared naturally yourself while chemicals are manufactured synthetically