When shifting away from industrial, chemical-based farming methods towards holistic, sustainable agriculture practices, the path required for a successful transition isn’t always clear. And, finding the right balance between maintaining profitable production yields and implementing new farming techniques can feel risky.
However, it’s not impossible. Here at Green Wave, we are continually helping farmers, gardeners, and agronomists transition successfully from a dependency on chemical fertilizers to sustainably based farming methods.
In this article, we’re going to share how EEF’s can be instrumental to the success of sustainable agriculture practices that will likely benefit future generations.
What is an EEF?
High-performing, organic-based fertilizers are part of the family of fertilizers known as Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizers (EEFs). They are designed to prevent nutrient loss and improve soil quality, both key factors for the creation of more sustainable food systems in the United States, and across the globe.
For farmers, gardeners, and agronomists that endeavour to maintain sustainable agricultural practices, EEFs are extremely useful. This is because these fertilizers can be instrumental in the development of a strong and healthy soil foundation. And, good soil health is necessary for long-term sustainable farming methods to be successful. Additionally, EEFs are known for improving crop productivity as well as enhancing plant health.
Sustainable Agriculture Practices Need EEFs
EEFs are ideal for sustainable agriculture practices such as crop rotations, no-till farming, and management of water resources. They improve soil health, reduce nutrient loss, nourish plants efficiently, and pollute less. Essentially, EEFs support key elements of sustainable farming methods, including:
- Soil regeneration
- Nutrient cycling
- Nitrogen fixation
Soil Regeneration and EEFs
When soil is depleted of nutrients it simply cannot easily grow healthy plants. And, when a soil’s quality lowers, it can have devastating effects on a farmer’s livelihood and food production abilities.
Understand Your Soil’s Health
When looking for a better way to grow crops, organic food, medicinal plants, and other renewable resources, it’s important to review the quality and health of your soil.
DIY Soil Testing Kit
For home gardeners and small scale farmers, conducting tests on your soil can be easily done with at-home soil testing kits, found at most agricultural supply stores. These simple tests can provide important information about the quality of your soil including pH (acidity/alkalinity), nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.
Farmers who want a more in-depth and thorough analysis of their soil can outsource that task to a scientific laboratory specializing in soil chemistry analysis. While the cost of soil analysis by a professional laboratory is more than a simple, at-home testing kit, it will provide a thorough and detailed profile of your soil.
Employ the Right Fertilizer
Once you understand what your soil is lacking, it’s easier to amend it to become well-nourished and fertile again. The use of precision farming systems alongside a quality, organic-based fertilizer is a reasonable and potent approach towards soil regeneration.
Quality EEFs from AgriPOWER are ideal for improving the health of your soil. This is because they assist beneficial bacteria in the soil with the breaking down of organic-based matter present in the land into humus. Also, an AgriPOWER fertilizer provides additional long-term benefits by providing atmospheric nitrogen for plants and nutrients in the soil.
EEFs and Nutrient Cycling
What is Nutrient Cycling?
Nutrient cycling is the name used to describe the natural life cycle of soil. Similar to the water cycle, nutrient cycling involves the introduction of nutrients into the soil by decomposing organic matter, the uptake of those nutrients by plants and organisms from the soil, and the return of nutrients with the return of organic matter in the form of natural biological waste products.
The Importance of Nutrient Cycling and Sustainable Agriculture
Modern methods of farming have relied heavily on chemical fertilizers that have interfered with the natural nutrient cycling process. Examples of this include soils that are lacking in nitrogen, water retention abilities, and the presence of healthy bacteria.
Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizers Promote Nutrient Cycling
When soil is healthy, it’s able to fully support and demonstrate all aspects of the nutrient cycle. This inevitably leads to soil that’s able to consistently produce healthy plants without the use of chemically derived amendments.
EEFs are an excellent option to use when regenerating poor quality and deficient soil. AgriPOWER® foliar fertilizer aids in the prevention of soil erosion, increases water retention in soil, and helps maintain a healthy growth (CFU) of beneficial soil bacteria, which in turn increases soil fertility and pH.
EEFs and Nitrogen Fixation
Nitrogen fixation is vital for farmers who employ traditional or sustainable farming practices. According to the Department of Agriculture, reducing the levels of nitrogen-based pollutants that leach from chemical fertilizers is important for the protection of local and global ecosystems.
EEFs are an excellent way to reduce the levels of nitrogen being introduced through agricultural practices and accommodate natural nitrogen fixation processes. Through a microbiological process known as biological nitrogen fixation (BNF), enhanced efficiency fertilizers may provide atmospheric nitrogen to the plants and microorganisms in the soil.
Sustainable Agriculture and EEFs: Take The First Step
For sustainable agriculture practices to be successful, making the health of your soil a top priority is absolutely essential. Without healthy soil to support and nourish your crop, it can be difficult to grow quality crops without relying on chemical fertilizers and pesticides. However, when an organic-based, high-performing fertilizer is employed alongside precision farming methods, sustainable agriculture and generous yields are both possible.
Featured image by Alejandro Barrón from Pexels