1. They Harm The Soil
This is actually true. For truly healthy plants to grow, you also need bio-active soil. When chemicals are applied to the soil, they kill the fungi. The same thing happens when the soil is exposed to the sun’s UV rays. But why you shouldn’t till is a story for another time. So while your plants might get a temporary boost, this will not be maintained throughout the growing season and more chemicals will need to be reapplied. The problem is, every time you reapply the chemicals, the soil conditions get worse and worse. The key to a healthy soil is organic matter, which feeds the bacteria and fungi, and they feed the plants.
2. They are not Cost Effective
You sure can spend a lot of money on fertilizers, especially MiracleGro. And knowing it just makes your situation worse, why would you keep throwing money down the toilet?? Even if you have to go out and buy manure or compost, at least you are investing in soil building materials.
3. They Don’t Build up the Soil
Organic matter builds up soil, not some blue powder in a box you got from Walmart. Chemical fertilizers typically give the soil one blast of nutrients. If these aren’t used up right away, they will usually run off because there is no organic matter anchoring them in place. When you feed your soil with compost, or rotted manure, the soil is slow-release fed the nutrients and there is no fear of them leaving since the organic matter binds it down.
4. Chemicals can Harm Local Wildlife
I mean, if bugs are directly exposed to chemical fertilizers, they could sustain life-ending damage! Don’t think you won’t harm the earthworms. And if it isn’t all consumed by the plants, it could work its way into bodies of water and harm wildlife there! Manure if properly used won’t cause these problems.
What can I do About it?
First off, don’t blow any more money on chemical fertilizers. Secondly, start composting NOW! This is pretty easy to do. Also, I highly recommend getting a flock of chickens. I’m serious! Their manure can be composted with materials high in carbon to create a very high quality organic fertilizer. If you can’t get chickens, I would look into starting a worm bin (video below) for worm castings. If that also isn’t an option, look into purchasing some manure or compost from a local farmer or gardener. They may even be happy to give you some! (Always make sure all manure is fully composted and broken down before using on plants grown for consumption.)
Thanks for reading!