Conventional agrochemical agriculture is based on the dependence of farmers on industrialized technologies that require a high investment of capital.
It is a one-way process, since there is no possibility of recycling these products; once applied to the soil, they are used in a certain percentage and the rest is lost, which leads to environmental pollution and degradation, hindering the economic development of the rural sector and causing unsustainable situations in the medium and long term.
A solution to reverse this situation is the use of organic fertilizers, which are mainly made up of the waste of vegetables, animals or of mixed origin.
These organic fertilizers are added to the soil in order to improve its physical, chemical and biological characteristics.
The most common fertilizers are the following:
- Waste from previous crops
- Green manures (legumes and grasses)
- Organic waste from livestock production
- Organic waste from the processing of agricultural products
- Waste from HORECA chain companies
- Household waste
With a good mixture of these types of wastes, we can achieve excellent composts, which when added to the soil will give it a better structure, providing nutrients and modifying the population of microorganisms. These composts will help the roots of our plants to have a better retention of water and exchange of biogases.
Adding organic fertilizers to soils, and especially to those with a low amount of organic matter, or are overexploited and eroded, will help us to recover the nutritional characteristics of our soils gradually.
The most important organic fertilizers, considering their capability to benefit our soils, are indicated below:
It is the dung of animals in extensive or intensive livestock farms. Only 30 to 40% of animal feed is used up; everything else is waste. These wastes can provide us with up to 1.5% Nitrogen, 0.7% Phosphorus and 1.7% Potassium, as well as Calcium, Magnesium and some microelements. Manure helps us to improve the biological, physical, and chemical characteristics of the soil. In order to achieve a better result, it is recommended that manure should be previously fermented.
It is the manure of earthworms, which feed mainly on organic matter. In this way, a faster decomposition and a better availability in the soil is achieved. One of the greatest advantages of vermicompost is that it has a large number of beneficial microorganisms (bacteria) for the soil, which help soil develop its biological properties. This fertilizer is recommended with an organic-mineral complete fertilization; vermicompost contributes up to 1-3% Nitrogen, 1-3% Phosphorus, and 1-2% Potassium and Calcium.
- Green Manure
A green fertilizer is any plant adapted to the area where the production unit is located and that can produce a large amount of Biomass, which directly helps the soil structure. These crops can be single, associated (grasses/legumes) or separated. It is highly recommended to use a mixture, since while the legumes fix the Nitrogen in the soil, the grasses will provide it with a structure. Despite being a slow process, these fertilizers have great advantages. For example, biochemical reactions occur in the soil and microorganisms such as fungi and bacteria that are responsible for decomposing the cellulose of the incorporated plants are increased. With these secretions, the consistency of the soil aggregates can be improved.
It is the mixture and decomposition of organic waste derived from the food industry, livestock production and household waste, which are decomposed under controlled conditions. The quality of composts will depend on the materials that are added to them and the mixtures that are achieved, which may vary according to the following percentages: 1.04% Nitrogen, 0.8% Phosphorus and 1.5% Potassium as well as Calcium, Magnesium and Arsenic. These composts stimulate microbial diversity and activity, improve soil structure, stabilize aggregates, and improve porosity. Their high content of microorganisms is highly beneficial to the soil.
These types of fertilizers provide great benefits to our soils and future crops. At Ferti-Organic, we are aware of and concerned about the degradation of our soils. Therefore, our products promote optimal organic fertilization, achieving excellent results.
The use of our humic acids, fulvic acids and good organic fertilization will help the roots of our plants to achieve a better absorption of nutrients, as well as a better protection of our crops against biotic and abiotic agents.
These good practices and the use of organic fertilizers and biostimulants will help us to put aside nitrogen or industrialized fertilizers, which pollute the environment.
By: Eduardo Morales Casas