Some Are Better Than OthersControlled release fertilisers (also known as 'slow release...') are long lasting. You find the tiny yellow capsules in the pots of nursery grown plants. They're especially useful for container growing. Nutra Allround Micro is one example that lasts 12 months.
Liquids and single nutrient feeds are the worst in my view - take care with quantity, where and when you use them.
Chemical fertilizers are rarely complete fertilizers and plants can become unhealthy. My organic garden works better because the soil is teaming with life, and there's more to enjoy - get the details on my link.
Gardening On The MoonNot gardening by the phases of the moon but gardening up in space where there's no soil. The Aerogarden designed for Space Shuttles is a popular addition to the technological home and great when living in rooms with no garden space.
Advantages to Chemical FertilizersThe rapid availability to plants of soluble chemicals is the main one when used in situations that require it. Packaging ready for use from a quick spray or watering can is attractive too. But these are also disadvantages.
Gardening With A Chemistry Set - A Growing FormulaYou won't get far without running into a formula of chemicals needed to grow your plants.
Growers using chemicals pay attention to the fertilizer analysis or formula on the pack. This arises precisely because quick acting soluble chemicals can destabilise the nutrient diet of your plants causing unbalanced growth.
As Soil AmendmentsSingle nutrient fertilizers such as nitrogen fertilizers, or potash fertilizers invite problems. Even if your soil has nutrient deficiencies - chemical amendments e.g. potassium nitrate... are a wasteful and risky way to make it up. Concentrate on soil improvement with manure and garden compost instead.
Chemical fertilizers provide one of several techniques directly transferred from modern farming to gardening. These farming methods spoil gardens.
Are Chemicals Added To Compound 'Organic Fertilizers'?They are added to some which are known as semi-organic. Take Arthur Bower's Bone Meal for example. The formula stated on some packs has been 7:7:7 - real bone meal isn't a balanced fertilizer? See my page on Bone Meal. So what's added? I can't say exactly, but it makes up for missing potassium nutrients to satisfy gardeners' expectations.
Elsewhere chemical amendments are added to make up for the slow release of the organic components. But wholly organic fertilizers are readily available.
Note that whether they are organic or chemical fertilizers, formula have to be stated on the packs. This is merely a laboratory analysis.
Organic v Chemical?Do you like the taste of commercially grown vegetables? Perhaps you've tried organic fertilizers on their own with poor results. But it's not just about fertilizer, you have to be an organic gardener and 'do the other things' to make it work. Gardening is not big farming and those methods are not suitable.
Organic fertilizers are not totally free from the affects of misuse.
Potential Problems With Soluble
(i.e. solids that dissolve)