Soil additives can be both organic and inorganic. Many man made soil additives can be gathered from the Best fertilizer Manufacturer in India. Let us understand first why soil additives are essential.
Why soil additives?
Soil additives are used to provide proper nutrition to soil. All soils contain basic nutrients in small amounts like nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Deficiency of these nutrients affects plant growth negatively.
Nitrogen – It helps in stem and leaf growth.
Few nitrogen sources are:
- Blood meal
- Alfalfa meal
- Composted manure
- Feather meal
- Cottonseed meal
- Mushroom compost
- Fish meal or emulsion
- Rice hulls
Phosphorus – It helps in resisting disease, facilitates root growth and influences flower colour.
Few phosphorus sources are:
- Bat guano
- Rock phosphate
Potassium– Fruit production and seed production is assisted by potassium.
Few potassium sources are:
- Dolomite lime
- Oyster-shell lime
- Kelp meal
- Rock dust
- Wood ashes
The sufficient availability of organic matter in the soil helps it in remaining loose, rich and dark. Now we will discuss in detail certain soil additives and its specific uses.
It helps clay soil to drain better and dry sandy soil to hold water more. Keep adding more compost before planting (every year) in annual and vegetable beds. Mix it before planting in shrub and perennial borders. It is difficult to till up clay soil. Hence do it when the soil has the right level of moisture content.
Note: If we crumble a clod then it should crumble. This shows that the soil is having the right amount of moisture.
Use power tiller for amending soil. You can also rent them. Amended soil helps you work on it easily. Future amendments too become a cakewalk by this. Bagged composts can be brought from garden centres. Municipal compost is inexpensive (when bought in bulk) and is of high quality.
Sand is used for loosening clay soil. Too much of it converts soil into concrete. It lasts long and does not need replacement. But no nutrients are present in it.
The nitrogen content of the soil can be improved with the help of manure. Rotted or aged manure collected from sheep, cows, horses, chickens etc acts as manure. Compost manures (for a duration of 1 year) before applying them to the soil. This is to make sure that the manure does not burn plants – when applied fresh.
It absorbs moisture from the soil. It is used especially in sandy soils. The heavy clay soils get loosened by its application. But peat once hardened is difficult to moist again.
It is made by bursting mica. It loosens soil and hold moisture. You need to apply it only once as it lasts indefinitely. They are good on all kinds of soils. It keeps doing its duty without demanding any interference for long once added to soil.
It aerates soil. It prevents soil compaction and is significant for root growth. They are seen as the tiny “white specks” in most of the potting mixtures. It can be reused and lasts indefinitely.
It has calcium sulphate. It is a good remedy for salty soils, improves drainage and loosens clay & heavy soil. The calcium addition done to the soil via Gypsum is the reason behind the remedial qualities of Gypsum.
This is powdered rock got from glauconite – an ocean mineral. It has many nutrients including potassium. It retains moisture and slows soil compaction.
The above points help you in understanding the role of soil nutrients and the additives that help in increasing the specific deficient factor in your soil. Soil nutrients present in excess too can cause problems to the soil and thereby hinder the proper growth of plants. Hence make sure that the Soil Additive suppliers you seek provide the right supplies suiting the texture and needs of your soil.