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Past Articles Library | Organic Fertilizer | Hydrolized Fish Fertilizer


I'm sure all of us have our favorite types of fertilizers. When I went to school, the Horticulture Department constantly used chemial based fertilizers, and, in fact, organics were always looked down upon as inferior. As soon as you mention "organic," people think of buying smelly manure in a bag, trying to rake it over their lawn, making a mess, and having their yard look terrible for weeks, etc. That was then, this in now.

I have learned over the years that every fertilizer has its day, and organics have come a long way.

Organic fertilizers now are just good, if not better, than the chemical fertilizers out there, and many of them are combined with certain minerals and products to improve the soil, so you get a real bang for your buck.

A few years ago, I was introduced to Hydrolized fish and was very impressed. It is NOT, I repeat NOT fish emulsion. It is processed completely differently, has little to no odor, is a liquid that won't clog drip irrigation, won't build up salts in the soil, and is readily available to be used by the plants.

ORGANIC METHOD: Hydrolyzed Fish Fertilizer. This product is an excellent source of N-P-K (nitrogen, phosphorous, pottasium) and contains trace minerals. Hydrolized means that it has been cold processed, which is very important.

Fish emulsion is heat processed, meaning that a lot of the nutrients and amino acids are totally destroyed during processing, leaving you with a product that has little nutritional value and a smell that is memorable.

Hyrdrolized, on the other hand, keeps all its nutrients and protiens and allows them to be readily avialable to the plant. It also makes those nutrients water soluable, so you can use them for foliar spraying or drip irrigation, with no worries of clogging. Because it does contain many minerals, it helps to keep the soil balanced and, in fact, improves soil quality just like an amendment. The N-P-K are 4-2-2, still fairly low, but used a little more frequently, I have seen this product do just as much for plants as a 20-20-20 based fertilizer.

CHEMICAL METHOD: Liquid based fertilzers are available in a wide variety of different formulations. They include complete formulas, such as a 10-10-10, and they come in specialty formulations that have just one or two nutrients, like a 10-0-0 or a 0-5-0.

They come in a concentrated form and dilute in water. These are good, fast acting, and very popular. They, like all soluable fertilizers, will need to be applied a little more frequently than granular or solid fertilizers, simply because the liquid form leachs through the root zone fairly quickly.

Some of these products are high in salts, and you need to be careful not to burn the plants by applying too strong a mix. These also can be diluted and applied as a foliar spray.

Both of these products are very good and will do wonders for you plants. Try both sometime and see what you think of them!