Fertilizer Is a Waste of Money 

Fertilizer Is a Waste of Money. Yes, I said it!

I hear a lot of chatter around the web right about now about “you need to apply fertilizer because of XYZ for fall pasture health!” And things like “Pastures need X tons/per acre of Nitrogen.” This is craziness, just crazy!!

How did nature fertilize before we became clever enough to develop synthetic fertilizers? Are we that arrogant to believe that we are smarter than nature?

Applying synthetic or “natural/organic” fertilizers is a waste of money. The only exception to this, in my opinion is feeding hay on your pastures. I don’t care what your soil test or extension agent tells you. You area has a certain type of soil and with proper grazing management you can enhance that soil. You can heal the mineral and water cycles while improving the organic matter content while at the same time save money away and preserve soil life.

Chemical companies enjoy selling you fertilizers (taking your money). The more you use them, the more dependent you are. Just like a drug addict.

When people come out with blanket statements like “pastures need 10 tons of N, P and K per acre every other year!” that should be a signal that the individual saying that wants to sell you something. I know that I have contradicted myself by making a blanket statement like “fertilizer is a waste of money” but that’s the truth! Don’t you know I’m always right? =] (sarcasm)

The solution to most problems and the point that I try to get across all the time is simple, mimic nature. She has all of the answers, and if we are observant, she will show us how to do things. It really is that easy.

So, the next time you hear someone telling you that you need to buy XYZ, run the other way!! For a more detailed explanation of HOW to increase the fertility of your land, please see my post on litter.

What do you think about synthetic or “natural/organic” fertilizers?


Chris Stelzer

Chris Stelzer is a published Author, founder of Agricultural Insights and creator of many resources that help family farmers and ranchers grow their businesses. His flagship courses are the Grazing Mastery Program and The Farm Marketing Mastery Program. 

Chris Stelzer

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