Humic Acid And Its Uses As Fertilizer

Humic acids are complex molecules formed by the breakdown of organic matters in soil. People think that humic acids are fertilizers but it is not so, it can be added to fertilizers to make soil better even if the soil is less fertile. Humic acids are not fertilizers but in fact, it is more of a soil conditioner. It is the end result of ancient plant and animal matter. The best sources of humic acids are the sedimentation layers of soft brown coal, which are known as leonardite. Humic acids are found in high concentration here. It is rich in organic and mineral substances that are essential for plant growth.

Humic acid, when used along with fertilizers has the ability to make the soil improve its texture and water retention. It increases water holding capacity and breaks down crop residues. It builds organic matters in soil and reduces soil erosion. It also stabilizes soil temperature. Humic acid, if applied to sandy soils, can provide organic matter and help retain water, which is essential for the growth of the plant.

Importance of Humic Acid-

The structure of the soil is improved by humic acids. It prevents high water nutrient losses in light, sandy soil. At the same time converts them into fruitful and fertile soil by way of decomposition. In heavy and compact soils, aeration of soil and water retention is improved. It prevents soil cracking, surface water draining, and soil erosion by increasing the ability of top soil to combine or mingle. Helps the soil to loosen and crumble, thus increases aeration or airing of the soil as well as soil work capacity. It increases water holding capacity of soil, which helps to resist drought. Many times it darkens the color of the soil thus help in the absorption of the sun energy.

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Humic acid helps to convert elements to plant food when it is added with fertilizer. It retains soluble fertilizers in root zone of the plant thus strengthens the roots as well as the stem. Has a very high ion exchange capacity. It releases nutrients as needed for the plants and stabilizes nitrogen that is required for the plant and also breaks down salt complexes. When humic acids are used with fertilizer it boosts the growth of the soil life, root growth, plant enzyme and plant growth at all stages.

Importance of Fertilizer in Soil-

Soil conditioner that makes poor soil good and good soil better is possible if humic acid is added to the fertilizers. It works best when added with fertilizer to create optimum growing conditions or the finest growing condition. They work as a compliment to the fertilizer and together, humic acid and fertilizer is more fruitful. Humic substances are similar to auxin growth hormone and improve the living cell metabolism or growth. It provides available carbon to microorganism and is safe to the environment and also to the living organism. It liberates carbon dioxide from soil calcium carbonate and enables its use in photosynthesis. It helps to eliminate chlorosis due to iron deficiency in plants. It reduces the availability of toxic substances in soil and makes the soil better for the crops. It neutralize both acid and alkaline in soil.

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Fertilizers are essential for better input in any cropping system and when humic acids are added, it helps to improve the efficiency of the fertilizers by increasing the nutrient value and retention. It can add organic matter to deficient soil and increase chlorophyll synthesis and have better seed germination. It also stimulates favorable microbial activity with an overall better and healthier plants and improved yields. Humic acids with organic fertilizer give abundant natural organic substances and help soil and plant with dense humic acid and can optimize the structure of soil to increase the buffering power and fertility.

There are different types of fertilizers with humic acids, such as humic acid liquid, humic acid powder, humic acid round granule and humic acid flakes. Humic acid in liquid foliar helps the plant to uptake and utilize the nutrients in the solution many times more successfully. It is assimilated more easily by the plants to improve the plant metabolism, immunity, root development and improves the supply of plant nutritional elements and also increases the formation of ferments. It promotes the increased accumulation of chlorophyll, sugar, amino acids and improves the effectiveness of nitrogen consumption.

The greatest and the most important thing is that humic acids helps to increase the plant’s ability or capacity to tolerate the stresses of heat drought, cold weather, diseases, insects, and other kinds of environmental problems. It increases general plant productivity, in terms of yield.

The Hazardous Effect Of Chemical Fertilizer: Organic Fertilizer Is The Only Solution

Plants require a number of soil nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur for their growth.  But, soil nutrient levels can decrease over time when crop plants are harvested, as nutrients are not returned to the soil.  Hence, these essential nutrients needs to be compensated either through the natural process of decomposition, when plants die and decay, and the nutrients extracted from the soil return to the soil or by the easy means of adding fertilizers.

Today fertilizer has become essential to modern agriculture to feed the growing population.
Use of fertilizers, especially, the chemical fertilizers has brought in blessings on humanity, which helped contain hunger and death in different corners of the world.  Though chemical fertilizers increase crop production; their overuse has hardened the soil, decreased fertility, strengthened pesticides, polluted air and water, and released greenhouse gases, thereby bringing hazards to human health and environment as well.  It has already been proved how chemical fertilizers pose serious challenges to the balanced and sustainable growth.  Accordingly, scientists and researchers are seen arguing in favor of organic fertilizers as the best solution to avoid soil pollution and many other threats to environment and life caused by overuse of chemical fertilizers.                                                                                            organic2 copy

Since salt content is one of the most critical characteristics of chemical fertilizers; they are expected to be harmful to agriculture in the long run as salts are harmful for plants as well as soil.  Continuous use of these chemical fertilizers depletes essential soil nutrients and minerals that are naturally found in fertile soil.  When we use chemical fertilizers; they do not help replenish soil nutrients and its fertility contrary to the popular belief; but, replenish only nitrogen, potassium and phosphorous.  And we know phosphorous does not dissolve in water and its overuse may cause hardening of soil.  Likewise alkaline fertilizers like sodium-nitrate develop alkalinity in soil reducing its fertility and making it barren.  So to say; soil fertility and vegetation depend much on the balanced supply of essential nutrients and minerals.  As such, overuse of specific nutrients may cause imbalance in the supply of soil nutrients further resulting in soil degradation and the loss of equilibrium of a stable soil.

Though chemical fertilizers will help plants grow faster; plants will not be healthy and strong as plants grown in that manner do not have enough time to mature to develop a good root growth, strong stems, or nutritious fruits and vegetables.  Even they will be less likely to survive because they will be more susceptible to pests and diseases as they lack good immune system and enough resistance against these forces.  Besides this, chemical fertilizers can cause root burn or fertilizer burn, as chemical fertilizers do not allow enough water intake for the plants.  As already said; chemical fertilizers are high in nitrogen salts, and when the nitrogen is absorbed by soil too quickly; it will dehydrate and dry up the plant. But, organic fertilizers are not like them; they are slow release which will allow time for microbial activity to break down the organic materials in the fertilizers. When we talk of microbial activity; we need to remember that natural microbes; which include beneficial insects, fungus, and bacteria found in the soil, are very much helpful for healthy soil and plant growth.  Needless to say, use of chemical fertilizers will kill these soil friendly micro organisms.

In their larger threat to environment, animals and human health; chemical fertilizers will ultimately end up leaking into our water bodies; ponds, streams, ground water etc and contaminate water supply as a result of which humans as well as animals may suffer numerous short term and long term hazardous chemical effects on their health and body.  In reply to this, organic fertilizers will be the right solution without which gardening and growing healthy and natural food and crops could be possible.

The Importance Of Fish Fertilizer As An Organic Fertilizer

Fish is a highly nutritious food.  It is an excellent source of protein with fewer calories and considered better than other meat options.  It is rich in omega 3 fatty acids which are proven to be good for the heart.  There are many health benefits of eating fish.  Its regular consumption helps reduce risk of various diseases and disorders.  However, apart from these health benefits; fish can also be used to produce fish emulsion a mixture which is considered one of the best organic fertilizers ever created in such a perfect proportion of nutrients plants need most for their healthy growth.  As such, it is beneficial not only for the humans but also for the plants.

A fish emulsion is generally created out of a byproduct of the fish oil and the fishmeal industries.  Obviously, it is natural and organic.  It is a simple process through which fish emulsion is produced using the waste fish samples that are subjected to intense heat by cooking until the muscles as well as the bones are tender enough.  Cooking not only softens the components for utmost extraction but also helps get rid of bad and sharp odor from the rotting fish.  There after few acids like sulfuric and phosphoric acids are added to the mixture only to kill off the decaying odor and help prevent early aging of the product.  Now, the fish emulsion is ready to be used as organic fertilizer in the plants.

Fish fertilizers can also be prepared using cold processed which means the fish is converted through the grinding process and by the naturally occurring enzymes that continually break down the fish into a liquid.  It is said enzymes are still present when you get it; so they are there to keep your soil alive.  Unlike fish emulsion this process does not remove oils.  It is screened through a mesh screen and has the consistency of chocolate milk and is very easy to apply.  This process uses several species of edible fish and has no offensive odor.  However, the fertilizers whether produced through cooking or using cold processed are all natural and organic, and very effective in the over-all growth of the plant.

Fish fertilizer normally contains most important minerals needed by plants.  It is also known to contain traces of other essential nutrients.  That is why; it is capable to promote proper development of the roots of the plant.  This organic fertilizer is observed to be more effective when applied to the plants during the colder seasons, which reduces possible leaf burning.  Other elements that are contained in fish emulsion also contribute towards over-all health of the plant.

Fish fertilizers are good source of nitrogen.  It is usually composed of 5% Nitrogen, 1% Phosphorus and 1% Potassium.  In addition to these three macronutrients, fish emulsion also contains micronutrients and trace minerals.  Fish emulsion makes a fast acting foliar fertilizer.  In fact, today it is one of the most common liquid organic fertilizers.  Tropical plants with large leaves, including Alocasia, Caladium, Calathea, Canna, Colocasia, Ginger, Heliconia and others, benefit from periodic applications of additional nitrogen using fish emulsion.  Leafy vegetables, such as arugula, lettuce and spinach and herbs, like basil and parsley, also respond well to extra feedings of nitrogen.  As such, this mixture is perfect for use in perennial veggies and flowers, for all plants contained in the greenhouse and are best in promoting healthy root systems among plants.  Its application is also believed to have the ability to help plants deter away insects that attack them.

Organic fertilizers are hailed these days due to a number of reasons.  These are commended for their ability to improve the quality of the soil where the seeding is planted. Organic fertilizers also re-emphasize the role of humus and other organic components of soil which are believed to play several important roles.  Further, organic fertilizers help air to move freely within the particles thereby enriching the soil as the nutrients are equally distributed.

A Comparison Between Organic & Chemical Fertilizer

To augment agricultural produce and to support the growing demand for food and crops are the obvious reasons for going on chemical fertilizers.  But, people gradually realized that chemical fertilizers bring more curse than blessings in the long run not only to the soil and plant life but also to humans.  What was once seemed to be a profitable option for the farmers and gardeners, has started posing danger to their soil and helpful micro-organism in the soil.  Soon soil has lost its natural humus and become hard, diseased and got infested with weed.  As a result of which soil has lost its natural vitality and foods it produced contain lower mineral and nutritional value.  In order to understand the impact, it is wise to draw a comparison between organic and chemical fertilizers – mainly their advantages and disadvantages.

While chemical fertilizers can be defined as any inorganic material of wholly or partially synthetic origin that are applied to the soil to sustain plant growth; organic fertilizers are substances that are derived from the remains or by product of organisms which contain the essential nutrients for plant growth.  Organic fertilizers need the help of micro-organisms in the soil to break them down and make them available to the plant.  And the soil benefits from this process.  But, chemical fertilizers are non-organic minerals in concentrated form that are readily available to the plant.  They need little help from the soil to break them down for plant use.  They do not help towards soil formation and its healthy maintenance.  Due to over use of chemical fertilizers for a longer period of time may render the land completely barren and waste; not fit for growing crops and vegetables.  In fact, an overdose of chemical fertilizers may kill these helpful microbes which help building blocks for fertile soil rich in humus and consequently allowing essential nutrients permanently leak out of the soil leaving it completely irreclaimable.

Both men and plants need nutrients.  Chemical fertilizers may help produce greater volume of crops and foods which are rich in a handful of nutrients; but, these foods may lack essential micronutrients which are needed for healthy growth of a person.  On other hand organic fertilizers like seaweed, cottonseed meal, blood meal, fish emulsion, manure etc. supply a complete range of minerals as per plant’s requirement.  Foods grown by using organic fertilizers will naturally be superior in nutrients.  Again, microbes convert the organic matter to various nutrients and minerals.  Minerals are typically present in broad range that complements with the soil, providing more balanced nutrition to plants.  But, chemical fertilizers lack organic matter and hence impede the function of microbes in the soil.

Organic fertilizers work toward soil reclamation as soil goes through the plant cycle of planting, harvesting and de-cropping and naturally loses an amount of nutrients which results in the pH imbalance.  Organic fertilizers help correct this imbalance in the soil pH and make it suitable for plant growth.  Needless to say, chemical fertilizers turn soil into acidic and may burn plant roots if applied overdoses directly.

Another important factor about chemical fertilizers the environmentalists are always against is the chemical release or residue these fertilizers leave; which may contaminate ground water or water bodies causing hazard to plants, humans and animals.  But, organic fertilizers are free from such serious environmental issues; rather they are environmental friendly requiring minimal further processing for reuse.  Chemical fertilizers are artificially prepared using synthetic material in chemical factories but organic fertilizers are prepared naturally and can be prepared by farmers themselves.  Hence, organic fertilizers are cheaper in comparison to chemical fertilizers.  Soil is important for agriculture.  When we use organic fertilizers, they bind sandy soil and even loosen thick clay or muddy soil and help these types of soils to sustain water and provide good aeration for easy movement of friendly microbes which ensures healthier plant growth.  On the contrary, chemical fertilizers may cause to dry and harden a fertile soil.  There are reasons for chemical fertilizers but they need to be used consciously and sparingly with full knowledge of their merits and demerits.

Liquid Kelp Fertilizer: What & Why

Soil is vital for every life form.  It is a vital part of ecosystem.  Plants need soil to grow.  All animals directly or indirectly eat plants or plant products to survive.  When soil is so important, it needs to be carefully prepared before planting the seeds or saplings in order to enable them to grow stronger, healthier and bear much quality fruits.  But, over the time, soil loses its natural vitality; essential nutrients and fertility due to repetitive or overuse and erosion.  Soil needs to be replenished or nourished to help it regain its fertility.  It can be restored to its original condition by using fertilizers.  Fertilizer is a chemical or natural substance added to soil to increase its fertility.  We find basically two types of fertilizers such as; chemical fertilizers and natural fertilizers.  We know how chemical fertilizers have their bad effects on soil, environment, plants, animals and humans.  Among the natural or organic fertilizers, seaweed or kelp fertilizer is considered to be the best.

Seaweed has been used in many places for thousands of years.  Seaweeds have been harvested for food, fertilizer and medicine in different parts of the world at least in coastal areas.  However, it is only around 30 years ago; scientists have started to understand why it is such a useful product for crops and especially vegetables.  It not only helps to promote healthy growth and vigour in your plants but also helps to improve plants’ resistance to insect and fungal attacks.  It is also found that seaweed helps reduce stress in plants as it makes them more tolerant of heat and frost.  Hence, they opine that it is a balanced product for it contains not only many trace elements but also amino acids, nutrients, vitamins and other vital resources.  Of late it has been gaining popularity as an excellent natural organic fertilizer among farmers and gardeners.

Kelp is a type of seaweed that is harvested in the oceans or along the shore from seaweed that washes ashore.  Loaded with essential ingredients such as nitrogen, phosphorous, sulfur and potassium, it strengthens soil, allowing plants to become healthier.  It also helps accelerate growth and increase flowering and fruiting.  People love to compost plant materials such as grass clippings, leaves, vegetable peels and leftovers to create a rich organic fertilizer in their backyards.  However, out of all the plant material available, there is no such thing as seaweed or kelp fertilizer which can be used as natural organic fertilizer.  Reasons are not far to see as to why it has been so popular among gardeners.

Main reason of advantage of it being in demand is that it is abundantly available as bioactivator.  Bioactivators are organic materials that help break down other materials easily.  They enhance the soil structure by breaking down remains of plants into absorbable chemical components and thereby make it easy for plants to use them for their growth and development.  We know plants need three major elements like nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium to survive, and kelp fertilizer is found to have a little more potassium than other fertilizers, besides other elements, which helps plants develop strong roots.  Adding organic materials to your soil helps to condition the soil and make it healthy for your plants.  As a result of which helpful bacteria in the soil also find it easy to thrive and cause the soil to form hummus which allows for better aeration, moisture retention and drainage.  There is little doubt that soil with such good characteristics is sure to improve seed germination and will allow plants to develop healthy root system.  We know that extensive roots yield abundant fruits, flowers and healthier foliage.  People living in coastal areas collect kelp directly from the sea shores.  Fresh kelp can be blended directly into the soil.  Kelp fertilizer also can be applied as liquid fertilizer through sprayers and drip irrigation system.  Fruits and vegetables grown in the garden using kelp fertilizers are quite different from the ones grown using chemical fertilizers, as they do not contain any harmful chemicals.

The Importance Of Seaweed Fertilizer & Orchid Fertilizer

When I was young, I often wondered why fruits and vegetables that came directly from orchards tasted so great.  How lush green lawns and colorful flowers refreshed my eyes and soothed my mind!  Why I could not resist my test buds whenever I saw some ripe, delicious and mouthwatering fruit in my neighbor’s orchard!  And lastly but more importantly, I was unable to understand why there was so much difference between two gardens separated just by a fence; when our neighbor’s garden was full of life and stunning color, ours was dry and lifeless.  But, when I grew up and finally started looking after the garden myself, I got the secret why my neighbor could grow such beautiful plants, flowers and fresh ripe fruits in his garden while we fail for how much hard we tried and, care and diligence we showed.  Now I have come to understand why soil preparation is so important in organic gardening.  Experienced gardeners know that nothing beats rich, organic soil for growing a lush and productive garden.  In spite of saying no to chemical fertilizers, now I am able to make vegetables thrive by using excellent organic solutions such as seaweed fertilizers.

Hence, if you want to give your garden, plants, flower beds or lawn a real boost like me, you should try seaweed as your orchard fertilizer.  I have seen the blessings seaweed orchard fertilizer showered on my garden.  These organic, all natural fertilizers which have been used in its raw state for many years by people who live around coastal areas to improve and nourish exhausted soils, are now gaining popularity  due to the great benefits that liquid seaweed fertilizers can offer.   On the other hand, chemical fertilizers though they aid in increasing crop production which in turn help stabilize the higher demand for food due to increase in population, and sometimes make it possible to increase plant nutrients in adverse weather conditions or during times when plants need additional nutrients, there are several harmful effects of chemical fertilizers we can hardly afford to face.  In fact, chemical fertilizers have more cons than pros.   Some of the harms chemical fertilizers bring about include waterway pollution, chemical burn to crops, increased air pollution, acidification of the soil and mineral depletion of the soil etc.  Consequently, the problems associated with use of regular chemical fertilizers continue to hound health experts and policy makers due to increasing incidence of infertility, deformities, cancer, pest invasion, soil depletion, water pollution, air pollution and less nutritious produce.

However, seaweed fertilizer has all the answers to the dilemma.  People use fertilizers to improve soil texture, promote growth in plants and increase yields. Seaweed fertilizer which is derived from seaweed is rich in vitamins and minerals which can be beneficial to the plants in your garden or orchard.  Why we find vegetables and fruits grown in our orchards and gardens taste great, because they are cultivated in a naturally organic process by using eco-friendly organic fertilizers like seaweed fertilizers made from kelp rank which is considered the best.  The day I used seaweed fertilizers in my garden I could see the difference they bring in and understand the importance of using them in orchards and gardens.

As already said, seaweed has a broad and well-balanced range of nutrients.  Unlike land plants, its non-cellulose built helps other compost materials breakdown easily and enrich the soil.  It is important to use seaweed for it is all natural and it contains complex carbohydrates which stimulate microscopic soil fungi and microbes.  And we know how these little soldiers help increase availability of soil nutrients and they act as defenders against soil-based diseases.  Seaweed is large algae growing in the sea or on rocks below the high-water mark and it contains mannitol and alginic acid both of which acidify the soil and help plants absorb nutrients.  Besides these, as the seaweed breaks down, the soil becomes stronger and richer which in turn offers the growing plants healthier root area to grow.  And less restrictive root systems ensure a larger, more bountiful fruit or vegetable for picking.  Though seaweed fertilizers come in liquid, powdered and granular forms, I always prefer to use liquid varieties both for root and foliar feeding due to their convenience and effectiveness.  As a matter of fact, seaweed fertilizer is found to be one of the cheapest and most effective organic plant nourishing agents you can rely on for your garden requirements.