FeedMyPlants.com - All You Need to Know About Fertilizers
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Here, we will take a quick look at the many benefits that plants and the soil in general will have from using fertilizers. Also, we will review the proper use and application of the two main types of fertilizers,namely organic and non-organic, and the ingredients they are made of. A more thorough information about specific types of fertilizers can be found by clicking on the type of interest in the right column ("fertilizers by type" category).
The Two Types of Fertilizers and Their Many Benefits
First, here’s a quick definition of the term. Basically, fertilizers are chemical compounds which applied through the soil or by uptaking through the leaves so that plant, fruit and flower growth will be promoted.
Generally, fertilizers can be categorized into organic and non-organic. As you may already know, organic fertilizers are made from compost or decayed plant and animal matter. Organic fertilizers can be further subdivided into the commercial and non-commercially manufactured fertilizers. The content of commercially manufactured organic fertilizers range from animal manure to seaweeds and worm castings. Non-organic fertilizers, on the other hand, are made from simple chemicals and minerals.
So which type is better to use? It actually depends on a number of factors, including the size of the garden that you are fertilizing, the varieties of plants that you have, the quality of soil and even the time of the year. The main difference between the two is that with organic fertilizers, the risks of over-fertilizing your lawn or garden with artificial chemicals can be eliminated.
Aside from making sure that your plants are growing healthily, both organic and non-organic fertilizers improve the productivity of the soil, retain soil moisture and prevent topsoil erosion when used for lawns.
All about NPK and Proper Application
Now, since there are different types of fertilizers which are commercially available, you should know which one you need based on the type of soil and the plants that you have. When you first visit the fertilizer section at a garden center, for example, you will definitely feel overwhelmed with the choices that you have.
This is where you need to have a basic knowledge of NPK will come in handy. NPK stands for the ratio of N-Nitrogen, P-Phosphorus and K-Potassium that the brand or type of fertilizer contains. For example, if you buy a brand of lawn fertilizer which has a 16-16-16 NPK ratio, it means that it has 16% nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. If part of the ratio indicates a 0 figure, it means that the brand of fertilizer does not contain one of the components.
The general rule of thumb to follow is that a fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 12-12-12 or 12-8-6 will meet most of the requirements of growing plants throughout the season. If you want to encourage growth during the period that the plant is thriving, choose a fertilizer with a higher nitrogen content. Finally, if you want to stimulate root growth or fruit production in plants, make sure that the NPK ratio has a higher phosphorus and potassium content.
By having a basic knowledge of NPK ratio, you will have a better understanding of which type of fertilizer it is that will encourage and maximize the growth of your lawn grass or garden plants.
- Chemical Fertilizers
- Fish Fertilizers
- Lawn Fertilizers
- Liquid Fertilizers
- Manure Fertilizers
- Nitrate Fertilizers
- Organic Fertilizers
- Palm Fertilizers
- Phosphate Fertilizers
- Plant Fertilizers
- Rose Fertilizers
- Seaweed Fertilizers
- Tomato Fertilizers
- Tree Fertilizers
- Turf Fertilizers
- Vegetable Fertilizers