Glossary




  • Nitrogen, (N), one of the Big 3 soil nutrients, a vital element for productive soil which must be renewed frequently. Directly responsible for vegetative growth above ground. Excess nitrogen, released too quickly or from chemical fertilizers, causes lower disease and pest resistance, poor color, taste, and nutritional value. Synthetic nitrogen is also quickly leached out of the soil.
  • Phosphorus, (P), another vital nutrient, essential for healthy growth, good roots, fruit development and disease resistance. Best source is ground rock phosphate; bone meal is also good but attracts voles and other critters.
  • Potash (Potassium), (K), rounding out the Big 3, potash helps the plant create carbohydrates and is also essential for strong, healthy plants and turf, fighting disease. Granite dust or stone meal, also called ground rock potash is a good natural source.
  • Microbial inoculants also known as soil inoculants are agricultural amendments that use beneficial endophytes (microbes) to promote plant health. Many of the microbes involved form symbiotic relationships with the target crops where both parties benefit (mutualism). While microbial inoculants are applied to improve plant nutrition, they can also be used to promote plant growth by stimulating plant hormone production (Bashan & Holguin, 1997; Sullivan, 2001).
  • Organic fertilizers are fertilizers derived from animal or vegetable matter.
  •  A soil conditioner is a product which is added to soil to improve the soil’s physical qualities, especially its ability to provide nutrition for plants. In general usage the term soil conditioner is often thought of as a subset of the category Soil Amendments which more often is understood to include a wide range of fertilizers and non-organic materials.[1] Soil conditioners can be used to improve poor soils, or to rebuild soils which have been damaged by improper management. They can make poor soils more usable, and can be used to maintain soils in peak condition.
  • Beneficial microbes in the context of plant growth, the term “beneficial microbes” refers to those microbes that benefit plant growth and health. Beneficial microbes can aid in assimilation of raw nutrients, protection from pathogenic microbes, extending of plants’ ability to access water and nutrients, and other interesting phenomena.

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