Organic and inorganic fertilisers provide plants with the nutrients needed to grow healthy and strong. However, each contains different ingredients and supplies these nutrients in different ways.
Organic fertilisers work over time to create a healthy growing environment, while inorganic fertilisers provide rapid nutrition. Determining which is better for your plants depends largely on the needs of your plants and your preferences in terms of cost and environmental impact.
Both organic and inorganic fertilisers have their perks as well as their drawbacks. While there is no right or wrong fertiliser to use, there are those that will work better for you and your garden.
- Organic fertilisers contain only plant or animal-based materials that are either a by-product or end product of naturally occurring processes, such as manures, leaves, and compost. Then microorganisms found in the soil decompose the organic material, making its nutrients readily available to the plants.
- Organic fertilisers decrease the danger of over-fertilisation because the nutrients are released slowly. The slow release of these nutrients also means they will be available over a longer period of time and less applications will be required. Organic fertiliser improves your soil. It does this by escalating the soils ability to hold water and nutrients. It decreases erosion and soil crusting caused by rain and wind. Using organic fertiliser adds more natural nutrients, feeds important microbes in the soil and improves the structure of the soil.
- Organic fertilizers often cost more than inorganic fertilisers, but over time, this extra cost may be outweighed by the benefits it provides. Organic fertilisers continue to improve the soil long after the plants have taken the nutrients they need. Therefore, the longer your soil is fed with organic fertilisers, the better its composition and texture. So, while inorganic fertiliser may be cheaper in the short term, it adds less to the soil in the long term.
- Inorganic fertilisers are sometimes completely, or at least partially, comprised of man-made materials. Normally, manufacturers combine specific kinds as well as amounts of different elements. This is according to the growing condition that is needed, as well as the crop that is provided.
- Inorganic fertilisers have the necessary amounts of the three main nutrients that your plants require to help them to survive and flourish. They also release quickly so that your plants are able to get the nutrients they need as soon as possible. If there is an emergency and you need to get your plant fertilised as soon as possible, inorganic will be the right choice for you.
- Inorganic fertilisers can sometimes leach, which happens when irrigation or rain gets below the plant root level.
- Excessive use of inorganic fertilisers can lead to a build-up of salts in the soil, causing damage to the plant. Inorganic fertilisers are generally manufactured using fossil fuels.
Chemical fertilisers do nothing to build your soil. Using only chemical fertiliser over time will deplete your soil of valuable microbes. Frequently, organic matter in the form of manure or compost is added to the soil to remedy this problem.