Soil Conditioner Program
What’s Soil Conditioning?
There are many benefits to using soil conditioners in agriculture. They improve soil tilth, or the physical condition of the soil, by increasing aeration and porosity. This allows for better water infiltration and drainage, which is important for preventing waterlogged soils and the problems that come with them, such as poor plant growth, soil compaction, and the development of anaerobic conditions that can lead to the release of greenhouse gasses like methane. Soil conditioners can also help improve soil nutrient availability by increasing micronutrient uptake and by making macronutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium more available to plants. In addition, soil conditioners can help to break up compacted soils, making them easier to till and plant.
How Does It Work?
Soil conditioners can change multiple aspects of the soil which affect how well it holds itself together, how well it drains, and how porous it is. These changes don’t alter the texture/how many particles are on the soil. Organic soil amendments are also fantastic at increasing the cation exchange capacity (CEC) of soils. This refers to the ability of the soil to hold on to positively charged particles called cations. The most common cations in The CEC of a soil is the total number of cations it can hold. The higher the number, the more nutrients that come into contact with plant roots and improve their health. A natural method to improve soil's water-holding capacity when the soil is too compacted or otherwise "thirsty" is to use a soil conditioner.
Turf Fertilizers vs Soil Conditioners
As opposed to fertilizers, soil conditioners generally assist plants in improving the soil structure so that they can use nutrients better, while fertilizers supply nutrients to plants. Organic slow-release fertilizers, however, can also be used as soil conditioners because they can provide some of the same benefits as soil conditioners, and some soil conditioners can also provide nutrients. The major difference between synthetic chemical fertilizers and organic fertilizers is that synthetic chemical fertilizers are usually intended to provide only nutrients, which is the main reason why synthetic chemical fertilizers are often combined with soil conditioners, which can make their use more efficient.