I had an interesting discussion today regarding the impact of chemical fertilizers. My colleague is an intelligent, health-conscious person with a deep understanding of the gardening environment. Her take on the beneficial use of organic fertilizers is that it is largely a media-driven story and that their only harmful impact is when they are mis-used.
We are constantly bombarded by ads, letting us know what we NEED to do to ensure a healthy weed-free lawn every year. According to the ads, it’s simple – just apply good Irish fertilizer (if you’ve heard the Scotts commercial) +pesticide 4 times between spring and fall. If a weed happens to be diligent enough to escape, take care of it with a quick spray of a good Irish weed touch-up product.
Many experts and marketers tout the benefits of chemical fertilizers (also know as synthetic) – they are effective for plant growth, they are cheap and readily available, they are simple to use… all of this is true. However, there is a downside.
OMRI (Organic Materials Review Institute) is a non-profit organization that certifies products for use under the USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) for organic agriculture.