Register free!
Search
 
     

Click for Weather
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #11  
Old 06-10-2003, 07:59 PM
LawnMagic1's Avatar
LawnMagic1 LawnMagic1 is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Olive Branch, MS
Posts: 47
I think using organic fert. is a great idea. There are so many benefits...no burn potential, increased microbial activity in the soil to eat away that thatch, less N runoff. But there is the cost issue too if you are trying to get a full lb. of N down.

I'm thinking of using Nitroform 34-0-0 next year. You can put down 2-3 N in one application and not get burned. There is that initial cost again $28/50lb. bag, but hey...your done with granular applications for the year.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 06-10-2003, 08:09 PM
Eirik Eirik is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Medford,Or Zone 7
Posts: 38
I couldnt agree with Randy J more.
With my experience, it seems the cost is the initial turn off, then ignorance.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 06-10-2003, 09:16 PM
dan deutekom's Avatar
dan deutekom dan deutekom is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Millbrook, Ontario
Posts: 424
I agree with Grassmechanic. It dosn't really matter what the source of the nutrients is. If organics don't harm the environment, then why do the environmentalists come down so hard on farm pastures that are near lakes, or spreading of pig manure on the land, chicken barns and the handling of manure or the runoff from cow herds into streams.......
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 06-11-2003, 12:23 AM
Mike Bradbury Mike Bradbury is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Fort Wayne,IN Zone 5
Posts: 495
Quote:
Originally posted by Grassmechanic
Plants and lakes cannot tell the difference between different sources of nutrients. Nitrogen is nitrogen, phosphorus is phosphorus and potash is potash, not matter what the source. That being said, I offer both to those that think they are doing the environment a favor.

Mike
Plants cannot tell the difference. The SOIL sure as hell can. One destroys it's microbial life and structure. One feeds and sustains said life.
Feed the soil, not the plant.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 06-11-2003, 12:27 AM
Mike Bradbury Mike Bradbury is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Fort Wayne,IN Zone 5
Posts: 495
Quote:
Originally posted by Randy J
Mike, I'm no chemist, but there has to be a difference between organic, and man made fertilizers. Organic fertilizers offer slower release and less potential for burn. Anytime you return naturally occuring components to the soil I would have to think that's better than man made chemicals.
I know they cost considerably more, but over a period of time they outperform conventionals, with less potential for damage. I understand the higher cost of synthetics may not sell in all areas, but I think anyone who turns their nose up at them is going to miss out. Educate customers on why they're more expensive, and many customers will be willing to pay for them. Especially in a field as competitive as lawn care, anything you can do to seperate yourself from the masses is to your benefit.
Just my thoughts anyway.

Randy
Oganics (bad word) offer very limited water soluable nutrients. Their claim to fame is their ability to provide nutrients to the soil over a long period of time as the microorganisms and chemical reactions in the soil break the materials down into plant usable nutrients. This versus the water soluable chemical fertilizers that hit too hard initially and don't last long enough.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 06-11-2003, 12:32 AM
Mike Bradbury Mike Bradbury is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Fort Wayne,IN Zone 5
Posts: 495
Quote:
Originally posted by LawnMagic1
I think using organic fert. is a great idea. There are so many benefits...no burn potential, increased microbial activity in the soil to eat away that thatch, less N runoff. But there is the cost issue too if you are trying to get a full lb. of N down.

I'm thinking of using Nitroform 34-0-0 next year. You can put down 2-3 N in one application and not get burned. There is that initial cost again $28/50lb. bag, but hey...your done with granular applications for the year.
If you're going to be "into" organics then you need to lose the 12-12-12 mindset. That number is the immediate, water soluable formula and as such doesn't apply to organics. Remember that organics are MOSTLY physical materials that must be broken down by the soil organisms to become plant usable nutrients.
Despite never putting down even 2lbs of nitrogen (according to the chemical fert standards), by organics always looked noticably better than the chem lawns. ALways greened up earlier in the spring too, despite NO early spring app.
Problem now is there is a LOT of BS "organic" material out there. Just cause something is made of "organic" materials doesn't mean it's worth a hoot as a fert. Lot of science in this too.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 06-11-2003, 12:34 AM
Mike Bradbury Mike Bradbury is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Fort Wayne,IN Zone 5
Posts: 495
Quote:
Originally posted by dan deutekom
I agree with Grassmechanic. It dosn't really matter what the source of the nutrients is. If organics don't harm the environment, then why do the environmentalists come down so hard on farm pastures that are near lakes, or spreading of pig manure on the land, chicken barns and the handling of manure or the runoff from cow herds into streams.......
You're kidding, right? :alien:
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 06-11-2003, 08:12 AM
Randy J Randy J is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Richmond, KY
Posts: 1,126
"Problem now is there is a LOT of BS "organic" material out there. Just cause something is made of "organic" materials doesn't mean it's worth a hoot as a fert. "

Good point Mike. One thing to make note of is the term "organic" simply means "contains the element carbon". It is possible to have a synthetic organic fertilizer. "Natural" is really the term we should be using.

Randy
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 06-11-2003, 08:27 AM
Grassmechanic's Avatar
Grassmechanic Grassmechanic is online now
LawnSite Silver Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: S.E. Michigan
Posts: 2,709
Mike & Randy - let me clarify. We are in the business of growing grass. Grass does not care where it's nitrogen source comes from. We are in the business of manipulating grass for whatever reason, be it a lawn, golf course, etc. To get the proper # of N to grow healthy grass, you will use a lot more organic fert. The basic difference in organic vs. "chemical" fert. is in the amounts of nutrients available. Organics do supply microbes, but only those that have not been processed for safety in handling i.e. Milorganite. Also of note it that some organics have offensive odor. Am I going to use an offensive smelling fertilizer on one of my millionaire accounts? Not if I want to lose the account. If we were to treat only the soil and not the plants, we would be using compost on every lawn and mulching, not bagging, the clippings. We would also be mulching the leaves into the lawn and not removing them, either. This may be realistic for some, but not others. Fertilizer will NOT kill soil microbes, if it did, it would be labeled as a pesticide. BTW, I do have a strong background in chemistry (4 yr) and soil science (2yr).

Mike
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 06-11-2003, 08:53 AM
Randy J Randy J is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Richmond, KY
Posts: 1,126
I don't think anyone is questioning your qualifications Mike, at least I'm certainly not. But as I said, I believe anyone that turns their nose up at organics is going to miss out. You might be surprised at some of those millionaire accounts. A lot of millionaires are conscious of their environment, and Lord knows they can afford to pay more for an organic program. As for the leaves, a lot of people do mulch the leaves and leave them on the ground as opposed to picking them up. I don't think anyone can argue that leaving them is good for the soil. Almost everyone recommends leaving grass clippings lay as they return nitrogen and other nutrients to the soil. This web page; RandyThe Dirt Doctor is pretty good.
As you said though, what works for some won't work for others.

Randy
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump





Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2012, LawnSite.comô - Moose River Media
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:20 AM.

Page generated in 0.10694 seconds with 7 queries