Organic fertilizers for vegetable gardens are very popular in the world of vegetation. As for starters, this article would be your effective guide in selecting which one fits your plant’s needs. Continue to read further and be an instant specialist on organic fertilizers for vegetable gardens.
Top 8 Choices of Organic Fertilizers for Vegetable Gardens
- droppings of cattle
- wastes from human habitats
- rubbish of slaughterhouses
2. Bat and Seabird Guano
- Guanos are the wastes (urine and feces) of bats and seabirds
- Abundant in nutrients particularly in phosphorus and nitrogen
- During dry conditions, other
minerals are formed from guanos like gypsum, opal, nitrocalcite, arcanite and a lot more.
3. Bone Meal
- Rich in calcium and with significant amount of phosphate
- Ideal for growing fruit trees and flowers since it strengthens roots
4. Shell Meal
- Made by crushing bones and/or shells of crustaceans.
- Great source of calcium as well as phosphorus
- Contains chitin, a polysaccharide that is also found in outer skeleton of other invertebrates
5. Blood Meal
- Made by drying and grinding the blood collected from slaughterhouse of farm animals.
- Good source of nitrogen although must not be applied on huge amount to avoid root burning.
- Promotes growth of green leaves
6. Rock Phosphate
- Can be formed by grinding calcium or lime-based phosphate rock.
- With considerable amount of phosphate and other nutrients.
- Great source of iron and potassium
- Has moisture retention property
- Not a water soluble fertilizer
8. Fish Emulsion
- It is considered a mild fertilizer.
- Its nutrients are released faster than other organic fertilizers.
- Does not damage plants because it does not add salinity to the soil.
With the choices above, you won’t definitely get enough of organic fertilizers for vegetable gardens so you better make up your mind!
Selecting the Ideal Organic Fertilizers for Vegetable Gardens – 3 Tips You Must Not Ignore
With vast choices of compost in the market, some are misled from what they should really purchase. Bear in the mind the following tips that would guide you what to look for in a fertilizer.
- Check the NPK profile.
NPK – Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium respectively are the basic nutrients your crops need so that they would develop into their mature stage.
- For turf grass or corn – choose a fertilizer with a maximum of 10% formula of Nitrogen
- For flowering plants, fruits and veggies – choose a fertilizer with a ratio of 5-5-5.
- For new plants – opt for a higher concentration of phosphorus
- Add up the numbers.
When the total numbers of NPK result to more than 15, there’s a big chance that the fertilizer is not really pure organic but with chemical mixtures.
- Availability of other nutrients.
Aside from NPK, secondary minerals may still aid in growing plants such as Sulfur (S), Iron (Fe), Calcium (Ca) and Magnesium (Mg).
With the above guidelines, picking for the right organic fertilizers for vegetable gardens is a lot easier and safer.
Organic Fertilizers for Vegetable Gardens versus Inorganic
Gardeners always have a choice whether to go for organic or non-organic compost. To better understand the difference, check the simple comparison shown below.
- Organic Fertilizers
- Works slowly but surely.
Organisms in soil take time to break the organic fertilizers so that the plants absorb the nutrients well without wasting any amount.
- Improves soil’s characteristics.
Organic fertilizers provide better aeration of plant roots as well as water retention of the soil.
- Nutrients are not readily taken in by plants.
Since the minerals and nutrients are absorb at the snail’s pace, your crops are not yet fed by the amount they need on a certain time.
- Contains small concentrations of nutrients.
Although some fertilizers are great source of the basic nutrients required by plants in order to grow, they still don’t have a concentrated amount of those minerals therefore gardeners must supply huge volume to meet the demanded nutrition.
- Inorganic Fertilizers
- Produces higher yields.
In the U.S and in other countries around the world, the use of inorganic fertilizers shows a maximum of 50% crop yield.
- Does not require lengthy decomposition.
This characteristic enables your crops to immediately absorb the nutrients.
- May burn out plants.
Excessive application of non-organic nutrients may cause dryness of crops.
- They leach.
When rain comes or you are to irrigate your plants, inorganic feeds tend to leach specifically Nitrogen. They stay under plant roots which would not bring any good effect to your vegetation.
Have you seen their difference? Although it’s clear that organic fertilizers for vegetable gardens are safer and more effective to use, inorganic options still have pros that must be consider.
3 Easy Steps for Do-It-Yourself Organic Fertilizers for Vegetable Gardens
DIY systems are always welcome when it comes to this type of procedure. True enough for organic fertilizers, you can create your own by following the simple steps below.
1. Choose the right container.
You may either purchase a commercial container or create your own but be sure that it’s big enough to accommodate the volume of waste materials that would be added to the pile.
2. Filling of organic material.
Make sure to fill the container up to 1/3 of its height with organic material. Wet these materials using garden hose and check if all are moistened to expedite decomposition process. Balance the mixture with carbon-rich materials and nitrogen-rich stuffs.
3. Aeration of the pile.
This process aids the putrefaction of your compost. You just have to bring up the decayed material and make it as cover for the fresh material underneath.
You have to wait for at least 3 months up to one year before you can say that the compost is ready to use. Of course the decomposition process varies depending on temperature conditions as well as the materials you’ve used. But after months or year had passed, your composts are now ready as organic fertilizers for vegetable gardens.
Did you find this article informative? Let your friends know about organic fertilizers for vegetable gardens too and together you can explore the flora kingdom; you may also share your opinion thru the comment section.