FERTILIZERS

Fertilizers are commercially produced plant nutrients. Fertilizers supply nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. They are used to ensure good vegetative growth (leaves, branches and flowers), giving rise to healthy plants. Fertilizers are a factor in the higher yields of high-cost farming.

Fertilizers should be applied carefully in terms of proper dose, time, and observing preand post-application precautions for their complete utilisation. For example, sometimes fertilizers get washed away due to excessive irrigation and are not fully absorbed by the plants. This excess fertilizer then leads to water pollution.

continuous use of fertilizers in an area can destroy soil fertility because the organic matter in the soil is not replenished and micro-organisms in the soil are harmed by the fertilizers used. Short-term benefits of using fertilizers and long-term benefits of using manure for maintaining soil fertility have to be considered while aiming for optimum yields in crop production

Organic farming is a farming system with minimal or no use of chemicals as fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides etc. and with a maximum input of organic manures, recycled farm-wastes (straw and livestock excreta), use of bio-agents such as culture of blue green algae in preparation of biofertilizers, neem leaves or turmeric specifically in grain storage as bio-pesticides, with healthy cropping systems [mixed cropping, inter-cropping and crop rotation . These cropping systems are beneficial in insect, pest and wheat control besides providing nutrients.

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