Damn you guys. I think me and JD deserve a Lawnsite prize for longest thread. BTW, JD, I haven't forgotten about you. I've been doing tons of reading lately on the effect synthetic fertilizers has on microbes and what I consistently find is #1 - Some synthetic fertilizers damage some microbes so it's not a black and white issue...and #2 Most synthetic fertilizers contribute to a "burning up" of organic matter depleting vital food for the microbes thus damaging them by extension.
- It reacts with water in the soil forming sulfuric acid
- Sulfuric acid has an extremely low ph (less than 1) and damages micro-organisms
- Hydrogen ions released from the acid replace alkaline elements on the cation exchange sites depleting the soil of held nutrients
- The free oxygen created in this reaction oxidizes the organic matter of the soil causing a low level combustion burning of the organic matter
Source: Oxsphere: A Beginner's Guide to the Biogeochemical Cycling of Atmospheric Oxygen
Each synthetic has their own effect causing damage in different ways. The biggest impact though is the big picture. It disturbs nature's eco system. That being said, if the eco system is already disturbed then no harm no foul right, which is where the bridge program comes in. Still, I think its obvious that over time, the most sustainable and common sense approach is building then supporting then maintaining the soil's eco system. No synthetic can do that.
Thanks Tim. I am a little ways off before I start playing with anything like those. But they sure are catching my interest! Do you or anyone know if anaerobic decomposition of vegetable matter will decompose 'cides more or less efficently than aerobic decomposition?
How do synthetic ferts burn/gobble up OM?
Do "synthetics" - need, a CE Site, to actually be used by the grass plant???
If the element is going to be used, does it need to 'adsorb' on a CE Site?
Basically - Root hairs, wrap around OM, and take advantage of every CE Site available... to get the food... that is how it works...