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  #21  
Old 06-11-2003, 09:59 AM
Mike Bradbury Mike Bradbury is offline
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Location: Fort Wayne,IN Zone 5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Grassmechanic
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
Excessive fertilizer salts will inhibit microbial activity. Think CHLORINE might sanitize? Ammonia?

Compost has very little nutritional value in most cases and is not considered a fert as much as a soil amendment. Mulching is the ONLY way to go and if you aren't because you're worried about your million dollar clients, ours don't have a problem with needing LESS fertilizer and improved soil as a result.
I DO mulch MY leaves into my yard but no, it wouldn't be acceptable for most paying customers.
Maybe YOU'RE in the business of manipulating the grass for profit, I make a living taking CARE of the earth and trying to improve the living conditions on OUR planet. The fact that it makes lawns BETTER is just a fringe benefit.
You claim the knowledge, ought to know that stuff.

You don't know as much as you think you do.
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  #22  
Old 06-11-2003, 01:52 PM
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Grassmechanic Grassmechanic is offline
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Location: S.E. Michigan
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mike Bradbury
Excessive fertilizer salts will inhibit microbial activity. Think CHLORINE might sanitize? Ammonia?

Compost has very little nutritional value in most cases and is not considered a fert as much as a soil amendment. Mulching is the ONLY way to go and if you aren't because you're worried about your million dollar clients, ours don't have a problem with needing LESS fertilizer and improved soil as a result.
I DO mulch MY leaves into my yard but no, it wouldn't be acceptable for most paying customers.
Maybe YOU'RE in the business of manipulating the grass for profit, I make a living taking CARE of the earth and trying to improve the living conditions on OUR planet. The fact that it makes lawns BETTER is just a fringe benefit.
You claim the knowledge, ought to know that stuff.

You don't know as much as you think you do.
Mike - you mean to tell me that you don't mow your lawn? that is manipulation. Do you use pollution spewing equipment to maintain people's property? You are a hipocrite. Your letting your own liberal leanings get in way of your brain. If you are putting fertilizer down at the rate that minute amounts of chlorine and ammonia will kill microbes, then I have to wonder who is dumber than the dirt.

Mike
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  #23  
Old 06-11-2003, 04:05 PM
Randy J Randy J is offline
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Location: Richmond, KY
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Ok, the last post wasn't directed at me, but since I've been more or less agreeing with Mike B., I just thought I'd clarify - I am not a liberal (picture me holding up a peace sign!)

Randy
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  #24  
Old 06-12-2003, 06:10 PM
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dan deutekom dan deutekom is offline
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Mike

There is a little bit of kidding in my comment but only to show how absurd this whole controversy is.

It seems that it either has to be all "organic/natural" or all synthetic. I think the reality is that there is a middle ground. There is nothing wrong with using man made materials to achieve the desired effects within reason, just as there is nothing wrong in using natural methods. One isn't necessarily better than the other in all cases and quite often using the best attributes of both give the best results. I was just pointing out that just because it is natural it is not always good for the environment and just because it is synthetic it must be bad. I get tired of the hypocrisy of the "Natural" movement trying to dictate how things should be done. It it was up to "naturalists" have no gas powered equipment, electricity and still have a perfectly manicured yard. A lawn is an unnatural mono-culture that requires management that sometimes includes a little bit of "synthetic" help. I also get tired of the marketing hype of "Organic products" because most of the ones I see certainly arn't natural.

I will continue to use my inexpensive bagged fertilizer, and occasional weed spray when required (usually once every 2 years), and I will leave my lawn clippings on the lawn, mulch my leaves on the lawn providing they do not get so thick that they choke the grass, aerate as require and top dress with compost.

If my method of lawn-care offends environmentalist's then so be it. It makes me and my clients happy.
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  #25  
Old 06-12-2003, 10:07 PM
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Grassmechanic Grassmechanic is offline
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Dan - I agree with your point. In fact, as I previously stated, I offer my clients a choice of organic or synthetic, chemical or whatever-you-may-want-to-call-it fertilizer. I let them decide. My beef is with folks that are selling organics as an environmental alternative, when in fact, they contaminate the water from runoff as much as regular fertilizers. I always inform my clients that I support IPM practices, but in the end, it is their decision what to use on their property. In fact, in Michigan, it is against the law to tell clients "this is safe" or "this doesn't harm such and such". And, I do agree, it is absurd where this thread has headed. I'm just trying to pass on to folks what I have learned through years of ongoing scientific research. Maybe I'll be queit and let folks learn on their own.

Mike
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  #26  
Old 06-12-2003, 10:27 PM
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dan deutekom dan deutekom is offline
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Another term that has been *astardized in the last few years IPM.
Most good horticulturists have been doing IPM since time has begun. It is the environmentalists that try to promote IPM as not using synthetic materials, when it really means to use the most effective and least harmful substance or practice to prevent or treat a particular problem. I guess it is time for me to be quiet too.
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  #27  
Old 06-12-2003, 10:36 PM
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Grassmechanic Grassmechanic is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by dan deutekom
Another term that has been *astardized in the last few years IPM.
Most good horticulturists have been doing IPM since time has begun. It is the environmentalists that try to promote IPM as not using synthetic materials, when it really means to use the most effective and least harmful substance or practice to prevent or treat a particular problem. I guess it is time for me to be quiet too.
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  #28  
Old 06-13-2003, 02:36 PM
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morturf morturf is offline
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Grassmech,

What is it in Milorganite that is bad??? Curious for you source of information.
Mike
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  #29  
Old 06-14-2003, 07:35 AM
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Grassmechanic Grassmechanic is offline
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???what???

morturf - where did I say that Milorganite is bad? You need to reread the post. What I DID say, is that milorganite is processed. Milorganite, for those that don't know, is processed human sewage. It has to be heated to kill all the bacteria, e-coli, etc. Then it is treated to remove heavy metals and other pollutants. If some one applies Milorganite thinking that they are adding beneficial bacteria they are wrong, as this product has been "sterilized". My source for my info. is 6 yrs in a university actually studying and testing these and other products.

Mike
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  #30  
Old 06-15-2003, 08:38 PM
masterpiece1 masterpiece1 is offline
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We offer both the organic and regular fertilizer. I haven't had too many customers even ask about the organics. I have a lot of haz-mat training and access to special haz-mat net work. After looking over some of the LD levels of things in my house I think I am more worried about those chemicals than the fert on the lawns. For those trying to save the environment they should stop showing up at the customers house and driving gas powered vehicles. The MSDS on gas would blow you away. Just some thoughts.
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