Organic fertilization is an efficient, environmentally friendly, and often cheaper way to add the necessary nutrients to your garden’s soil. We’re going to walk you through the most common organic fertilizers, what minerals they contain, and how to use them to maintain a healthy and flourishing lawn. From the best organic liquid fertilizer to different formulas, you are about to find out everything you need to know to determine which organic fertilizer works best for your vegetable garden.
Fertilizer Numbers Basics
Each fertilizer contains a certain amount of minerals that can seriously benefit the health of your plants and grass, as follows:
- Nitrogen: facilitates the formation of proteins in plants and stimulates the growth of stem and leaves;
- Phosphorus: helps soil breathe and provides an energy boost
- Calcium: determines the growth and resistance of plants
- Potassium: confers firmness to the plant and helps it form strong, resistant roots
- Sulfur: stimulates the formation of organic compounds and vitamins needed for plants’ growth.
“Up, down all around” is a simple phrase that is an easy way to remember the primary nutrients your plants require to achieve successful growth:
- Nitrogen for vegetative growth like plant leaves or grass (Up).
- Phosphorus for root development (Down).
- Potassium for everything (All Around).
How Fertilizer Helps Plants
Besides the valuable nutrients an organic fertilizer can add to the soil, there are numerous other benefits it can bring to your grass and plants:
- When organic fertilizers break down, they improve the soil structure and its ability to retain both water and nutrients
- There is no risk of toxic accumulation of chemicals and salts that can seriously harm your grass and plants, like in the case of all chemical fertilizers
- The materials used to create organic lawn fertilizers are biodegradable and recyclable
- Organic fertilizers stimulate the natural development of plants and help them become more resistant to diseases and pests.
What to Use: Liquid or Dry Fertilizer?
When you use organic fertilizer, you should choose the right one for the plants you want to nourish. Thus, fertilizers can be either liquid or solid, and there are specific rules you should take into consideration for both:
- Organic Liquid Fertilizer
Liquid fertilizers are obtained from soluble fertilizers and are distributed mostly distributed through the watering system. The great advantage is that distributed in this way. The fertilizers do not come in direct contact with the soil’s substrate. It maintains its pH level and salt concentration. The main disadvantage is that the temperature of the air conditions the use. At temperatures above 25 degrees, absorption of liquid organic lawn fertilizer is reduced. The wind also has a negative impact, causing organic fertilizer to be distributed unevenly.
- Organic Solid Fertilizer
Slow dissolving solid fertilizers can be found in the form of granules. They will enter the soil’s substrate directly. The advantages of using a solid organic lawn fertilizer include reducing salt concentration in the substrate and increasing the nutrients’ use efficiency. Once applied, they provide nutrition for an extended period, from four months to one year and a half. Their disadvantages are also related to temperature fluctuations. High temperatures will cause an acceleration of the release of nutritive elements. It can lead to root burning, but periodic soil analyzes can help to avoid it.
Types of Organic Fertilizers
There are numerous ways in which you can obtain the best organic fertilizer for your plants. Most of them are quite popular and usually represent the first choice of experienced gardeners and beginners alike. So let’s address some of the lesser-known organic fertilizers that you can easily get your hands on:
Organic Green Fertilizers
A natural method of improving soil quality is crop rotation. Some plants, especially vegetables, release organic fertilizer nutrients into the soil during their growth. Others behave like mulch and benefit the other cultures around them. Among the most edible plants, we have to mention peas, soy, clover, rapeseed, mustard, and rye. But it would be best if you were careful, as each plant has its own rules based on which it can develop adequately or not. Take, for example, pepper, which successfully grows when planted after beans, but never after potatoes.
Homemade Kitchen Organic Fertilizers
The first items on the list are banana peels or eggshells. The potassium from the banana peels and the eggshells create a highly efficient organic fertilizer, especially for tomato seedlings. Then there’s coffee beans and tea. Both of them are good for plants that grow in acidic soil, such as tomatoes, blueberries, roses, and azaleas.
Crushed Tree Bark
Crushed tree bark is excellent for both fertilization and the protection of plants and soil. Before adding crushed tree bark, the soil should be raked, and all weeds should be removed. Once the ground is ready and clean, you can add a thick layer of tree bark after crushing it into tiny pieces. The result mustn’t contain too many significant wood residues because they will retain the nitrogen needed for soil.
Fish Emulsion Fertilizer
Fish emulsion, or fish fertilizer for plants, is a fast-acting, organic liquid fertilizer made from the byproducts of the fishing industry. Not only is fish fertilizer an organic option, but it is also made from fish parts that would otherwise be wasted. It contains plenty of nutrients for quick absorption by plants. Fish fertilizer for plants is a mild, all-purpose feeding option that can be used at any time. I use fish fertilizer on my seedlings for my garden, my houseplants, and our lawn to help the grass grow in the areas where the dogs play. I buy Alaska Fish Fertilizer.
It is highly recommended you thoroughly document and research specifics for your plants and lawn. Only then can you adapt the process and come up with the best fertilizer for according to the needs of each species, the age of plants, season, and, of course, soil.
Archie was a builder for more than 40 years. Mainly after his retirement, he enthusiastically works in the garden and writes for a blog Homemakerguide.com to keep himself occupied. His many years of experience can get you the right tool reviews, whether a drill, welding machine, or so. An impressive fact to note about him is that almost everything in his house represents his skills made by his hands.