Miracle-Gro and Osmocote are classified as chemical, synthetic fertilizers.
Much of their ingredients do not come from sustainable resources. The production of nitrate, the biggest component of Miracle-Gro, Osmocote, and other synthetic fertilizers, involves tremendous energy produced by burning fossil fuels, such as propane, natural gas, and heavy oil, and the fertilizer industry is now heavily reliant on the inexpensive natural gas from hydro-fracturing. Phosphorus comes from phosphate rock which is obtained by mining and must be treated chemically to make the phosphate available to plants. Potassium salts are obtained from mining potash deposits.
Using inorganic, non-sustainable fertilizers like Miracle-Gro and Osmocote over a long time encourages salt build up in soil which decreases the plant’s and turf’s ability to take up the necessary nutrients. Excess fertilizer leaches into local waterways creating algal blooms that consume oxygen. Aquatic life suffers from oxygen starvation and eventually dies.
Original Miracle-Gro Ingredients
sodium EDTA (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid), which acts as an antidote in metal poisoning by reducing the presence of calcium and magnesium minerals, and as an anticoagulant. EDTA is slow to biodegrade, which means that it remains in the environment and impacts the ecosystems it is in contact with for a long time, is toxic to humans and animals, and can be toxic to fish
manganese EDTA – a source of manganese, and again EDTA
ammonium sulfate (an inorganic salt) – a source of nitrogen (NH4) and sulfur
potassium phosphate – a source of potassium and phosphorus
potassium chloride (a metal salt also called potash) – a source of potassium
urea – a synthetic source high in nitrogen
boric acid – a source of boron
iron EDTA– a source of iron with another dose of EDTA
copper sulfate – is used for algae control (can be toxic to fish)
zinc sulfate anhydrous – an inorganic herbicide and fungicide
sodium molybdate – a source of molybdenum
*The NPK analysis is 28-8-16.