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All You Need to Know About Organic Fertilizer

Dive into everything about organic fertilizer – benefits, types, and usage for a thriving, eco-friendly garden.

Table of Contents

Organic fertilizers are compounds, which are produced by a living creature. The living creature can be animals, plants, microorganisms, or their dead remains in the form of blood or bones. Different organic compounds such as compost, animal waste, sewage wastes, manure, and others are the most useful organic fertilizers. They are sustainable and provide complete nutrition to the plants after becoming a part of the soil. 

If you are thinking about using organic fertilizers, you have to keep a few things in mind. In this article, I am going to share complete information about organic fertilizers. It includes the types, properties, utilization methods advantages, and also compared with the synthetic fertilizers

What is meant by organic fertilizers?

organic fertilizers

Organic fertilizers are made from natural sources that may be the waste products of animals, plants, and birds. When they are mixed up in this soil, they give a fine consistency to the nutrients. However, these are slow-releasing and can provide nourishment to the plants for a longer time period. These are sustainable and easily decomposed with time. Most of the organic fertilizers are low in nutrients but they have a good comparison of NPK.

Major elements

Majorly, the organic fertilizers have Nitrogen, Potassium, Phosphorus, and Sulphur. 

Properties of organic fertilizers

  • They release the nutrients after their breakdown. They are environmentally friendly.
  • They enhance the water-holding capacity of the soil. 
  • With the passage of time, they make the soil and plants healthier. 
  • They are produced from the natural products or by-products of the natural sources.
  • Organic fertilizers are not expensive in comparison to synthetic fertilizers.
  • When the waste products are used as a fertilizer, they prevent soil pollution in the environment.
  • These are carbon-based fertilizers. Moreover, they have moderate combinations of micronutrients that are supportive of plant growth. 
  • They also ease the uptake of other micronutrients from the soil. 
  • The organic fertilizers increase the total porosity.

Why should you use organic fertilizers?

Organic fertilizers provide all of the necessary nutrients that the plant requires. With time they improve the soil quality. They are inexpensive, and that’s why farmers can use these to improve plant growth and overall yield. Their addition increases the microbial activity in the soil. These are easily available and utilized. It improves the retention of the soil and improves the soil texture. 

Is organic fertilizer safe?

Organic fertilizers are safe for plants, soil, humans, and the environment. These are made from plant and animal sources. Their presence improves the water movement within the soil. They benefit the plant with their nutrients. They are a safe choice and they provide the nourishment with consistency. 

NPK of organic fertilizers

The NPK ratio for the organic fertilizers varies according to the type of the fertilizer. You can use organic fertilizer according to the plant’s needs. The organic fertilizer moves slowly with the plant base. However, synthetic fertilizers start quick action in the plants. 

Best organic fertilizer for vegetables, fruit, and flowering Plants 

Best organic fertilizer

  • Best organic fertilizers for vegetables

For the vegetables, there are some of the organic fertilizers that are good for this purpose. That is:

Compost, manure, guano, bone meal, fish emulsion, blood meal, and worm castings are considered the best ones for this purpose. 

  • Best organic fertilizer for fruits

For the growth of the fruit’s blood, soybean, cotton seed, bone feather, and alfalfa meal are used. 

  • Best organic fertilizer for flowering

Bone and blood meal is considered to be the best fertilizer for flowering. 

Commonly used fertilizers 

Most commonly compost, sewages, municipal wastes, litter, manure, and food processing wastes are highly useful fertilizers. They positively affect the growth of the plants. They immediately start to release the nutrients that encourage the growth of microorganisms in the surrounding plants. They make symbiotic associations with the plants and benefit them for the long term.

How to use organic fertilizers?

These can be applied using various methods. Most farmers used it in the following ways:

  • Use directly to the crops.
  • They use it in the form of a solution with the water.
  • Some use it in the liquid spray form. For example, a blood meal. 

Best ways to use

  • The best and most effective way to use organic fertilizers is to place them 1 to 3 inches below to the seed or plant soil. In this way, they will mix up quickly with the soil. Afterward, the nutrients will be easily available to the plants. It’s preferable not to use them while the foliage is wet. 
  • With the addition of water, the fertilizer can be used too. This method is mostly useful for poultry manure or any dry fertilizer. Through the addition of water, they become better in the past and readily available to the plants. Place the organic fertilizer in a jar and then fill it with the water. Place it for some time. Afterwards, use it for the plants.

How often should you use organic fertilizers? 

The best results can be seen with the use of the right amount of fertilizers. Most preferably, the organic fertilizers should be used within one month. However, the number of applications depends on the quantity of fertilizers that you are using. You can also use it after every 2 weeks for plant growth. 

Organic Fertilizers in comparison with inorganic fertilizers

Organic fertilizers 

Inorganic (synthetic) fertilizers 

They are affordable and free.

They are expensive.

They are prepared using natural sources such as animals or plants.

They are prepared from the chemicals in fertilizer companies. Their formulations include chemicals. 

They improve soil shape and texture.

However, with time they don’t improve the soil shape.

They are good at holding water in soil.

They don’t have water holding properties.

Usually the exact content of the nutrients and elements is not known.

The content of the fertilizer is known with the exact ratio of their nutrients. 

Advantages of organic fertilizers

Advantages of organic fertilizers

  • They are completely a safe addition to the environment.
  • These are non-toxic for the soil. Moreover, they also provide important nutrients to the soil. All are essential for plant growth. 
  • They provide protection to plants from pests and other external harmful attacks.
  • With time, they increase the microorganisms content in the soil. That forms a beneficial relationship between the plants and microorganisms. This is encouraging for plant growth.
  • It protects soil erosion and improves the water-holding capacity of the soil. 
  • They improve soil structure and content. 

Disadvantages of organic fertilizers

  • They have low nutrient levels that are not the right fit for the immediate action of the fertilizers. 
  • The excessive amount of the fertilizers can cause toxicity to the soil. 
  • Some of the fertilizers are time-consuming and not able to grow plants.
  • Some of these fertilizers are not enough to provide the right content of nutrients. 
  • They may contaminate the water, soil, and environment. 

Future Trends in Organic Fertilizer Development

Exploring New Organic Sources

Researchers are exploring unconventional organic sources like algae and invasive plant species as potential fertilizers. These materials are abundant and can be harvested sustainably, providing essential nutrients while managing environmental issues.

Innovations in Fertilizer Formulation

Advancements in biochemistry are leading to the development of more efficient organic fertilizers with enhanced nutrient profiles. These new formulations are designed to release nutrients more effectively and match plant uptake cycles, reducing waste and increasing effectiveness.

Integration of Biotechnology

Biotechnology plays a crucial role in enhancing the effectiveness of organic fertilizers. Genetically modified microbes that can fix nitrogen more efficiently or decompose organic matter faster are being developed to increase soil fertility and nutrient availability.

Sustainable Production Techniques

Future organic fertilizers will increasingly focus on sustainable production techniques. This includes zero-waste processes where all inputs are fully utilized and byproducts are recycled, supporting a circular economy in agricultural inputs.

Conclusions

Organic fertilizers are a good choice for the soil. These are ready to add to the soil and provide the essential nutrients to the plants with time. These are added to the soil and remain so that they can provide nourishment to the soil. There are many advantages of organic fertilizers. These are nontoxic to the environment. However, they have low levels of the nutrients in it. 

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