• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The Use and Abuse of Organic and Inorganic Fertilisers

Extracts from this document...


The Use and Abuse of Organic and Inorganic Fertilisers Fertilisers provide nutrients needed by a crop to grow by adding mineral salts to the soil. (1) (6) Organic fertilisers include manure, compost and sewage sludge. Inorganic fertilisers however, are liquids or pellets containing mineral ions and they are made either from naturally occurring rocks or by industrial processes. The main soil nutrients found in these fertilisers are nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, which are present in concentrated form. Both types of fertiliser are added to increase crop yield but there are differences in their uses as will be shown later. (7) (6) However, all fertilisers must be used with caution as the misuse or overuse of them can lead to serious problems. Eutrophication is the main environmental hazard associated with fertilisers. (1) The three main soil nutrients named above are called macro-nutrients as they are required in large amounts and they all help produce a higher yield. ...read more.


However, this would mean that they are ineffective in a single season. (3) As organic fertilisers are lower in strength they are unlikely to "scorch" a root and kill the plant. They also encourage beneficial soil bacteria whereas chemical fertilisers have shown to kill them. (4) Organic fertilizers also place fewer demands on energy resources, and they offer opportunities to recycle "garbage". (3) There are many other advantages of organic fertilisers too such as how they contain more nutrients including trace elements and how they improve the crumb structure of the soil. (9) But synthetic fertilisers do have some of their own advantages too. They are easier to obtain, handle, transport and apply and they are quicker acting and cheaper. (9) However, when using a fertiliser, great care must be taken especially when deciding the amount to use. Not only does their use have consequences but also the law of diminishing returns is present. ...read more.


However, all fertilisers must be used with care and caution. Not only must the correct fertiliser be chosen (organic or inorganic) which is more suitable for the circumstances but also the quantity used is very important. Incorrect quantities can lead to the waste of fertilisers but also, more importantly, can have serious detrimental effects on the surrounding environment. However, reduction in diffuse pollution from agriculture can only be achieved by appropriate land management techniques and farmers need quality advice to enable this. Therefore, legislation has been passed by the Environment Agency and the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) exists which produces guidelines for fertiliser use and draws up action plans for farmers in areas that are likely to exceed levels set by the European Union. (1) Other organisations also help such as the Fertiliser Manufacturers Association (FMA) which "represents the views and interests of the fertiliser industry to governments and to appropriate organisations and bodies, and promotes the proper and responsible use of fertilisers. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Green Plants as Organisms section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Green Plants as Organisms essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Advantages and disadvantages of fertiliser.

    While there are no specific disadvantages to fertilizing if doing it correctly, you do need to know approximately which type of fertilizer (which nutrients)

  2. The Waste Land by Eliot emphasises the themes of dystopia and apocalypse.

    back to its normal meaning, symbolizing the approaching end of the waste land. The rain falling on the parched earth is a metaphor for the reawakening of the people shell-shocked from the world war, ready to begin their lives again.

  1. Water and Marine Resources

    a wide range of species, and how they interact with each other. For example adult herring feed mostly on planktonic animals and as such are in competition with other pelagic fish. The herring are also a source of food for cod and other species.

  2. To Find Out the Effects of Fertilisers On the Growth of a Crop

    Making it a fair test. The variables that can be change in my investigation are: * Soil * Cup * Seeds can be change but the crops can be varies. The varies I will change will be the dosage: * Cup 1 - double the amount of dose.

  1. The use of fertilisers in farming.

    Other major stores of nitrogen include organic matter in soil and the oceans. Despite its abundance in the atmosphere, nitrogen is often the most limiting nutrient for plant growth. This problem occurs because most plants can only take up nitrogen in two solid forms: ammonium ion (NH4+)

  2. Mangrove Soil Analysis

    Procedure: 1. Loosely plug the necks of all the filter funnels with filter wool and place a 100mL measuring cylinder beneath each of them. 2. Take up the first funnel. Fill the funnel about one third with the first sample of dry dirt.

  1. Investigating the effects of fertilisers.

    A fair experiment We will have to keep some things the same to make the experiment fair. Here are the things we will keep the same: * The place where the plants are kept * They will be measured every week * They will be watered with the same amount

  2. Experiment Report on Best Fertilisers

    Nitrophoska contains Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium. NPK Fertilizer- NPK fertilizer is the most commonly used and manufactured fertilizer as it contains the three essential nutrients for plant growth Nitrogen, Potassium and Phosphorus.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work