A good farmer recognizes the importance of quality fertilizer. Knowing which fertilizer to use for which plants are essential for your plants’ growth. There are two different types of fertilizers, organic and inorganic. Organic fertilizers are those made from organic and natural materials such as compost, manure, or plant and animal products. These fertilizers work at a slow pace over a long period and build up your soil’s nutrients.
Inorganic fertilizers are those made from chemicals that have the required nutrients. If you are interested in boosting your soil, this is the best option as they work quickly, but for the short term.
The three primary nutrients include:
- Nitrogen which is responsible for plant growth
- Phosphate which strengthens the root and stems as well as the seeding, fruiting and flowering
- Potassium helps your plants have stronger and deeper roots. It slows down infection and improves photosynthesis.
There are six types of fertilizers:
Nitrogen is a nutrient that is responsible for proper growth. This nutrient is useful when added to fertilizers. In the lifetime of a plant, the middle stage is the one that needs a lot of nudging to continue growing and produce new leaves. Organic and inorganic fertilizers both contain nitrogen. Nitrogenous fertilizers are subdivided into four groups:
- Ammonia and ammonium salts
- Chemical compounds with nitrogen
- Animal and plant by-products
Organic Nitrogenous Fertilizers
These fertilizers consist of animal and plant by-products such as fish manure, dried blood derived from slaughterhouses and oil cakes. Before the plants use these fertilizers, bacteria into usable nitrate-nitrogen and ammonium nitrogen ferment the materials. These fertilizers act slowly and supply nitrogen to the plants for an extended period. Seek advice from such experts as MBP Solutions to find out, which is the best fertilizer for your crops.
Phosphate fertilizers are divided into treated, natural, chemical and by-product phosphates. There are different types of phosphates:
- Rock Phosphate: It is found as natural rock deposits, but very insignificant amounts are used as fertilizer. Most of it goes into manufacturing superphosphate, whose phosphoric acid is soluble in water and is used by your crops.
- Superphosphate, which is made from ground phosphate rocks, comes in three grades: Single superphosphate, di-calcium phosphate and triple superphosphate. Single superphosphate is suitable for most crops and applies to all soils. Use it together with organic manure if your soil is acidic. Apply while or before sowing or transplanting.
Potassic fertilizers are applied to lands that lack potash. Potassic fertilizers are used in different forms, such as:
- Potassium Chloride (Muriate of potash): Contains between 50 and 63% of potash. It is absorbed on the surface and does not leach. Apply before or after sowing
- Potassium sulphate (potassium sulphate): Costs more as you use magnesium sulphate to treat potassium chloride, and contains between 48 to 52% of potash. It is soluble in water and is used by the plants on application. Apply any time up until sowing.
Compound fertilizers have between two and three nutrients. If phosphorus and nitrogen are missing in the soil, compound fertilizers are used, such as amorphous. It is composed of 16% nitrogen and 20% Potash. You can mix the two fertilizers in the proper proportion to get the compound fertilizer.
Since compound fertilizers are not suitable for all soils, this means a mixture of different fertilizers with different qualities is applied to the soil depending on the soils’ needs. The combination removes the need to use the fertilizers separately and saves on labor.
Complete Fertilizers (NPK)
These mixtures contain the three principal nutrients i.e. Nitrogen, Phosphate andPotassium,and are referred to as complete fertilizers. Most soils typically lack these three nutrients, and most manufacturers make special mixtures for different plants.
Farming or even simple gardening is a full-time job of discerning what your plants need. If you do not know your soil type and which fertilizer to use, your pants will not grow strong and healthy. Find out your soil type and the type of fertilizer you need for each plant.