Human beings need nutrients to grow, and they get them by food. Soil also needs fertilizers to maintain its fertility. Additionally, Fertilizers help the soil to enhance productivity.
With fertilizers, plants become resilient against harmful plants such as pathogens, pests, and weeds. Elimination of diseases in plants can increase the value in the harvest.
The soil requires regular maintenance for its fertility. Naturally, soil comprises very fine rocks, different types of minerals, and organic matter due to the decomposition of the biological species. In this blog, we will analyze the advantages and disadvantages of fertilizers in agriculture.
Role of fertilizers in Agriculture
The need for manure and composts as fertilizers is probably almost from very ancient times in agriculture. Modern chemical fertilizers include the three crucial elements in plant nutrition: Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Other essential elements are sulfur, magnesium, and calcium. Additionally, Fertilizers help the soil to maintain its fertility. Therefore, the role of fertilizers is vital in agriculture.
Advantages of Fertilizers in Agriculture
There are many advantages of fertilizers in agriculture. Let us look at some of them.
- Boosting growth – Nitrogen is known for its ability to promote plant growth. Fertilizers that are rich in Nitrogen are preferred because of the advantages mentioned above.
- Acceleration of maturation – Phosphorus content in the fertilizers is responsible for the plant’s maturity.
- Enhanced resistance – Potassium in fertilizers can reinforce the stalks and straws of plants. Thus enabling them to hold more water and be more impervious to drought conditions.
- Improve quality – Fertilizers can improve the quality of fruits and seeds, leading to better harvest and earnings.
Other miscellaneous advantages
- Fertilizers are very easy to transport and store.
- For supplying a specific nutrient, one can select a particular fertilizer due to its exact nutrient nature.
- Fertilizers are water-soluble, and they can easily dissolve in the soil.
- It can help in increasing the crop yield and provide enough food to feed the large population.
- They are predictable and reliable.
As we analyze the significant advantages of fertilizers in agriculture now, let us look at the disadvantages.
Disadvantages of fertilizers in agriculture
1. Fertilizers can be very harmful to people, plants, and soil.
They can cause damage to people’s skin, and they can cause harm to soil and plants as well.
2. Synthetic fertilizers have high amounts of acidic chemicals.
They contain high amounts of acidic chemicals, which are very dangerous for the environment.
3. Excessive Nitrogen
Rich fertilizers can runoff from land into water bodies when it rains. It can cause toxic pollution in rivers, lakes, and the ocean because of an excessive nitrogen level.
4. Synthetic fertilizers contain toxins that can be destructive to the soil.
In addition, the chemicals in these fertilizers can be very harmful to humans, wildlife, and marine life. Fertilizers can leach through soil into groundwater, making them very harmful to the surrounding environment.
Leaching into the groundwater can be destructive for everyone. It can cause harm to many animals.It is one of the major disadvantages of fertilizers in agriculture.
5. Results in depleted soils
Synthetic fertilizers typically only supply Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, but do not supply other nutrients to the soil. Consequently, the soil used for growing crops given synthetic fertilizers is depleted over time, and the food crops themselves become nutritionally deficient.
6. It is costly
One of the significant disadvantages of fertilizers is that it is very costly. In agriculture, farmers already have to bear expenses on expensive machines like tractors. However, some affordable tractors are available in the market, such as the John Deere Tractor. If one wants to buy costly fertilizers, it will be challenging for him to survive.
Other miscellaneous disadvantages :
- Excessive use of fertilizers can damage plants and reduce soil fertility.
- Leaching occurs, and the fertilizers reach the rivers causing eutrophication.
- Excessive use of fertilizers reduces microbial activity and disturbs the pH of the soil.
We have discussed the role of fertilizers in agriculture in detail to conclude that Fertilizers no doubt help soil maintain its fertility and enhance productivity. However, it has many disadvantages, such as it can cause pollution and is very costly too. Therefore, farmers cannot survive after putting their costs on expensive machines and fertilizers.
However, costly agricultural machines like tractors have a substitute. Many tractors are affordable and readily available in the market, such as the Powertrac tractor. Therefore, it is advisable to use it accordingly.
For many years, farmers have utilized chemical fertilizers to increase the production of crops to meet the increasing demand. Continuous usage of these chemical fertilizers has proven to be harmful. Therefore, there is a need to change to organic farming that involves utilizing the Bio-fertilizers.
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