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Synthetic vs. Organic Fertilizers: What Are the Differences?

June 5, 2023
Meagan Duffy

Synthetic vs. Organic Fertilizers: What Are the Differences?

When you look for ways to feed your garden and help it grow, fertilizer is one of the best things you can invest in. However, there are two types of fertilizer to consider, synthetic and organic, and you need to know the differences between the two to choose the right one for your home.

Base Ingredients

When it comes to the ingredients that make up these fertilizers, there’s a big difference. Manufacturers make synthetic fertilizers with minerals, gas, and inorganic materials, pulling out the nutrients into the fertilizer. Organic fertilizer comes from organic sources, like plants or organic waste, to create a nutrient mix for your plants.

Ease of Access

When it comes to more direct differences that impact you as a consumer, one of the bigger differences is the ease of access. Synthetic fertilizer is cheaper than organic in most cases, depending on the brand and what elements are present. Additionally, it’s easier to produce synthetic, so you can buy a lot more of it. However, this isn’t a big concern for most people using it on their home’s front lawn.

Potential for Harm

Between synthetic and organic fertilizers, synthetic is more dangerous for the environment and your plants. While it’s safe for use, over-fertilization with synthetic fertilizer can cause burning and hurt the soil and plants. In most cases, organic fertilizers aren’t capable of hurting plants from spills or overapplication. If you have pets, it’s vital to use pet-friendly lawn care services, which normally use organic fertilizer for the safety of animals.

Nutrient Differences

One of the differences between synthetic and organic fertilizers that you need to know is their nutrient differences. Because you can custom order synthetic fertilizers, you can target specific needs, but they don’t last as long as organic ones. Organic fertilizers offer micronutrients that are integral for the health of your plants, something you would need to order specifically for synthetic fertilizer.

While it’s impossible to say whether one is better for every situation and person, most lawns will benefit more from organic fertilizer. It offers a lot of nutrients for a variety of plants in home gardens and your yard. Plus, you have a smaller chance of damaging your plants or lawn with over-application.

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