Natural Plant Fertilizer

Overview

Fertilizers are added to soil to promote plant growth. Natural fertilizer is a soil amendment that is created from all natural materials. Inorganic fertilizer is created from chemical compounds. Inorganic fertilizers provide a quick boost to plant growth but deplete soil health over time. Natural fertilizers, on the other hand, tend to improve the soil's tilth and fertility over time. The use of natural plant fertilizers has increased steadily since the problems of environmental pollution have become well known.

Identification

Natural fertilizer is an organic mixture used to amend soil and improve plant growth. It is made of naturally occurring organic materials such as yard trimmings, kitchen waste, manure, worm casings, plant materials and seaweed. Some mineral compounds such as limestone, rock phosphate, and sodium nitrate are approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency for use in small amounts in commercial compost.

Significance

Natural plant fertilizer benefits the garden because it promotes a diverse insect population. Beneficial insects prevent many plant diseases and infestations by harmful insects. Pollutants from chemical fertilizers can kill beneficial insects and kill the healthy microorganisms in the soil. It is the microorganisms in healthy soil that plants feed on. There are 4 billion microorganisms in 1 tsp. of healthy soil.

Benefits

Natural fertilizer in the home garden makes it a safe place for pets and children because there is no worry about health problems related to chemical exposure. Organic compost helps plants resist disease and pest infestation. Healthy plants start with healthy soil. Using natural fertilizer can reduce the need for water, especially in conjunction with a mulching program. Using natural fertilizer also helps decontaminate soil. Compost (natural fertilizer) absorbs odors and some heavy metals in soil, preventing them from entering the water supply.

Effects

Natural fertilizer regenerates garden soil through the addition of living organisms. The effect of living organisms in the soil is to enrich the nutrients available for growing plants. Plants grown in good nutrient-rich soil produce food that is more nutritious. The positive environmental effects of using natural plant fertilizer are the reduction of the carbon footprint by reducing dependence on petroleum products. Landfill use is also reduced because waste products are recycled and reused as natural fertilizer.

Considerations

It is easy to get started using natural plant fertilizers. They are available commercially at the local garden center or by mail order. Backyard composting can be started simply by choosing a corner of the yard to start a pile.Composting requires little time. Compost bins increase the speed of the decay process, giving you natural fertilizer in six weeks to six months.

Keywords: natural fertilizer, compost, organic fertilizer

About this Author

Joan Norton, M.A., is a licensed psychotherapist and professional writer in the field of women's spirituality. She blogs and has two published books on the subject of Mary Magdalene; "14 Steps To Awaken The Sacred Feminine:Women in the Circle of Mary Magdalene," and "The Mary Magdalene Within."