Organic vs Chemical Lawn Fertilizers
A healthy lawn looks beautiful, is a fun play area for children, cools the garden and creates a comfortable outdoor living space. Lawn care includes the right mowing, watering, seeding, aerating and fertilizing. Different types of grass need different types of fertilizer and a lawn care professional will know what is best for your lawn.
Chemical fertilizers, or inorganic fertilizers, are synthetic and contain different ratios of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. Nitrogen supports the growth of leaves and stems because it promotes protein and chlorophyll. Potassium, taken from potash, causes thick stems and leaves by promoting protein development. Phosphorus produces more flowers, healthier roots and tubers and larger fruits. A professional lawn care company will know which combination is good for different kinds of lawn.
Inorganic fertilizers are usually made from petroleum products but can be derived from rocks and organic sources. They are refined to such a pure state that they no longer act like organic substances even if they occur in nature. They are directly absorbed by the plants and have a dramatic affect on their development, but they do not sustain the soil and require continuous applications. This repeated use can cause a build-up of toxic chemicals that spoil the soil and eventually enter the water table.
Chemical fertilizers are inexpensive, even though they are made from non-renewable sources and, because of this, are often over used. Results can be seen in a few days because they come in different ratios, and the exact formula needed for a certain type of lawn can be applied.
Organic fertilizer is also called natural fertilizer. The same nutrients are in organic fertilizer that are in chemical fertilizer, but they are in a natural form and not overly refined. Organic fertilizer should not be confused with the standard for processing organic food. Organic fertilizer is usually made from animal or plant waste such as manure or compost as well as powdered minerals such as bone meal and cottonseed meal.
The ratio of nutrients in organic fertilizer is very difficult to determine, and they are often sold as soil conditioners rather than fertilizers. Some companies manufacture organic fertilizer that does have a specified ratio of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. If you prefer to use an organic product, a lawn care professional can guide you to the right one.
Organic fertilizers improve the soil and, for sandy soil, they increase its ability to hold water. For clay soil, it helps the soil drain water. It will strengthen your lawn over time and, since it is slow-releasing, it is impossible to over fertilize. There are no toxins to harm the water table or your garden and it is sustainable, biodegradable and renewable, so it is environmentally friendly. Manufactured packages may be expensive, but it is easy to make your own by composting leaves, vegetable waste and grass clippings.
Organic fertilizers take longer to show results because they break down naturally according to the weather and their ingredients. As they begin to work, your lawn will show improvement and, since the soil is also stronger, your grass will be able to fight weeds and pests better.