The difference between organic and chemical fertilizers
The Words—against chemical fertilizer
When you use chemical fertilizer you are throwing out a carrier (some kind of salt) with a chemical on it then you water this into the soil and a small amount (about 2%) is absorbed into the rhizosphere (the zone around the roots) the rest of the chemical continues to drain through the soil until it hits the water table. This is known as water pollution the #1 reason against using chemicals. (We need to drink water)
Chemical fertilizers negatively impact the soil web by killing off portions of it. Much of the salt carrier sticks to and builds up in our soil. The salt sucks the water out of the fungi, bacteria, protozoa, and other beneficials killing them. That’s why you have to keep applying chemical fertilizer so often and the microbiology that should be there to feed the plants in the rhizosphere is continually killed off. By using the chemicals you continue to make the condition worse each time the#2 reason against using chemicals—you destroy the soil food web by polluting the soil.
Most of us are never completely taught how plants really live. They get nutrients from their root system (we all know that) but they also produce (through photosynthesis) secretions known as exudates, a form of carbohydrates sugars and proteins. These exudates grow all of the soil life that is needed to fuel the metabolic functions of the larger microbes and what is not needed is excreted as waste and taken back into the plants roots as nutrients. You see the plants control the soil food web for their own benefit and a fact that is not fully appreciated by gardeners is because no one ever explains this. Now you know! I remember my grandmother being really tickled upon hearing that anyone would go to a store to buy something to feed their plants, “ Your plants are supposed to feed you!” she would say. Of course, we today do not live in my grandmothers world and our soils have usually been made very poor by all sorts of 20th century chemicals and pollution. If you look at the report in your water bill that usually comes out in February you will see listed among the chemicals that our water is tested for; Nitrates (from chemical fertilizers) (Organophosphates (chemical pesticides) and Atrazine (chemical herbicides). Since we aren’t starting out on good footing we need to help the process along by adding good organic amendments to our gardens to ensure that our plants have what they need in the way of nutrients and protection at first. The best products for achieving this are compost, mulch and compost tea (that has been correctly made and aerated). If you have homemade compost, that is great, but if you had to buy enough compost to add even a half-inch it would be very costly so I put you on a good balanced program using very specific organic products for at least the first year. In 1-3 years you will have built your program in your garden and will not have to fertilize because your rhizosphere will be healthy again just like it was in our grandparents day.