Questions For The Organic Guys?

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by Fertboy, Mar 16, 2006.

  1. Fertboy

    Fertboy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 62

    I am in the process of offering a organic fert as part of my program. I operate on the Delmarva peninsula in MD. In our area the water quality of the Chesapeake Bay is a big concern. I am all GO for anything I can do to help reduce excessive nutrients. My big question is I see products like Nutrients Plus use Chicken waste. The entire area I live in is loaded with poultry farms, and farmland. All of the studies show that these poultry farms and the run off from the manure used for agriculture is the largest source if nutrients ending up in the Bay. I would like some insight ,how applying a poultry based product can be any better?

    Thanks!! Ed
  2. Norm Al

    Norm Al LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,227

    its not its just a huge marketing gimick to add 15% to the invoice while making the customer feel warm and fuzzy! how did i do? :)
  3. nocutting

    nocutting LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 530

    States have restrictions on the use or re-use of bio-solids, the norm is to sell it outa this has slipped under somebodies radar isnt surpriseing, so do the right thing and stick to feed grade or green fertilizers, non poultry composted teas [ unless applied as a foliar]......minerals such as Greensand ,soft rock phosphate, gypsum, lime, sulfur,epsomsalts,iron, seems to me a "Bright fellow should be able to find something organic?:usflag:
  4. Bluefin

    Bluefin LawnSite Member
    Messages: 25

    You have to remember that a poultry farm is considered a "point" source of pollution...having a very high concentration of nitrates/ammonium/urea that can build up over the years. A perfect site for runoff, particularly near a water source. Leaching to the water table is most likely a problem as well. As far as using poultry based fertilizers....not a problem if you apply at normal application rates. I would not hesitate to use them at all. They would not pose an environmental concern.
  5. NattyLawn

    NattyLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,643

    Looks like a lot of the burden was on the farmers spreading the manure as fert that caused a lot of the problem.

    "Prior to the 1980s, Carr says, poultry litter was mainly seen as a waste product that farmers just wanted to get rid of by any means possible. For decades, they had applied the wastes to farmland as fertilizer, but many weren't paying much attention to the application rates--most farmers would just spread the poultry litter on the same field, in the same spot, year after year."

    The Amish in Lancaster county still practice in that same manner and are the biggest PA polluters of the Chesapeake.

    It looks like it's OK to apply composted poultry manure as lawn fertilizer, but if you have environmental concerns, take the road Nocutting laid out for you. There are a lot of organic options out there.
  6. Fertboy

    Fertboy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 62

    Thanks for the great info guys. I will most likely not go all organic, until they can find a REAL selective herb . We only spot spray,IPM etc so we really dont go hog wild on pest as it is. Just looking for options to make a slow transition, and be a little more proactive. I would like to possibly substitute a Organic fert in all the apps except the early pre. I currently have a few customers I service that request only fert, no pest. I use milorganite since its availble, and I only have few to apply. These customers lawns are in good shape, "Thet mow,water & get aerations " . If anyone knows of a good distibutor in the Delmarva area let me know.

    Thanks! Ed

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