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Organic vs. Synthetic Fertilizers For Your Landscaping Needs In Defiance

Unleashing The Power of Fertilizers

Organic soil fertilizer bag next to plants

Ever wondered why your neighbor’s lawn is so lush and vibrant? Or why your tomatoes never seem as plump and juicy as the ones at the local farmer’s market?

The secret could be in the fertilizer they’re using being best for Ohio’s soil types.

This blog post will delve into the domain of organic and synthetic fertilizers, equipping you with the knowledge vital to making the best choice for your home landscaping needs in Defiance, Ohio.

By this post’s end, you’ll have a grasp of the pros and cons of each fertilizer type and how to use them competently to craft a stunning backyard landscape.

Organic vs. Synthetic Fertilizers

Pile of white sacks filled with synthetic fertilizer


  • Both organic and synthetic fertilizers aim to provide essential plant nutrients for plant growth and development.
  • They supply plants with vital ions, among them being ammonium, nitrate, phosphate, and potash, which the plant uses to make amino acids to boost its metabolism.


  • Organic fertilizers are slow-release, meaning they supply nutrients over a longer period, improving soil structure and fertility.
  • Organic fertilizers lower the risk of nutrient leaching and are environmentally friendly.
  • Organic fertilizers are often more expensive, have a lower nutrient concentration, require larger quantities, and take longer to show visible results.
  • Synthetic fertilizers are cost-effective, contain a high nutrient concentration, show swift results, and are easy to apply.
  • Inorganic fertilizers pose hazards to the planet: groundwater contamination, algal blooms, eutrophication, and salt buildup in the soil.

Organic Fertilizers: Pros And Cons

Different brands of fertilizer

Organic fertilizers are derived from natural sources like plants, animals, or minerals.

These fertilizers undergo natural decomposition and transformation processes facilitated by microbes, fungi, and invertebrates, making them rich sources of macro and micronutrients in complex forms.

Examples: compost, composted manure, bone meal, blood meal


Environmentally Friendly

Organic fertilizers are derived from natural origins, making them an eco-friendly selection for your landscaping needs. They do not contribute to pollution and help maintain the natural balance of the ecosystem, leading to a greener and healthier lawn.

Improve Soil Structure And Fertility

Organic fertilizers enhance the soil structure, promoting better water retention and aeration. They also increase soil fertility by adding essential nutrients, which can lead to healthier and more robust plant growth.

Lower Risk Of Nutrient Leaching

Unlike synthetic fertilizers, organically derived fertilizers release nutrients slowly, reducing the risk of nutrient leaching.

This leads to an increased likelihood that the nutrients will remain in the dirt and be used rather than being washed away by rain or irrigation.

Slow-Release Of Nutrients

The slow-release nature of organic fertilizers ensures your plants receive a consistent supply of nutrients during their life. This can lead to more consistent and sustained plant growth rather than the quick bursts of growth often seen with synthetic fertilizers.



Organic fertilizers can be more costly than synthetic options. This higher cost can be a significant consideration for homeowners, especially those with large landscapes to maintain.

Lower Nutrient Concentration

Organic fertilizers commonly have a lower concentration of nutrients in contrast to synthetic fertilizers. This means a heavier application of any organic fertilizer to achieve the same nutrient levels, which can take more work and money.

Requires Larger Quantities

Due to their lower nutrient amount, you may need to use extensive quantities of organic fertilizer to meet your plants’ nutrient conditions. This can also lead to higher costs and more work in terms of application.

Longer Time For Visible Results

Because organic fertilizers release nutrients slowly, it may take longer to see visible results in your landscape. This slower pace can require more patience compared to the immediate results often seen with synthetic fertilizers.

Synthetic Fertilizers: Pros And Cons

Chelating agent bottle of synthetic fertilizer

Synthetic fertilizers are industrially produced from raw materials such as air, natural gas, and various ores. They are highly water-soluble and provide a quick nutritional boost to plants.

Examples: ammonium nitrate, urea, potassium chloride



Synthetic fertilizers are generally less expensive than organic options. This cost-effectiveness can be a significant advantage for homeowners, especially those on a budget or with large landscapes to maintain.

High Nutrient Concentration

Any synthetic fertilizer will typically have a higher concentration of nutrients compared to an organically derived fertilizer. This means you can use less synthetic fertilizer to achieve the same nutrient levels, which can save time and effort in terms of application.

Immediate Results

Synthetic fertilizers are quickly absorbed by plants, leading to immediate and noticeable results. This quick impact can be gratifying for homeowners who want to see rapid improvements in their landscape.

Easy To Apply

Synthetic fertilizers are often easier to apply than organic options. They come in various forms, such as granules or liquid, that can be easily spread or sprayed onto your landscape.


Environmental Concerns

Synthetic fertilizers can pose environmental risks, such as contributing to water pollution through runoff. These environmental concerns can be a significant drawback for homeowners who want to maintain an eco-friendly landscape.

Contamination Of Groundwater

The use of synthetic fertilizers can lead to the contamination of groundwater through nutrient leaching. This contamination can have broader environmental impacts and may also affect the health of your landscape in the long term.

Algal Blooms And Eutrophication

The runoff from synthetic fertilizers can contribute to algal blooms and eutrophication in nearby bodies of water. These processes can harm aquatic ecosystems and are a significant environmental concern.

Salt Buildup In The Soil

Over time, the using of synthetic fertilizers can result in a buildup of salts in the earth. This salt buildup can harm both soil microbes and plant health and may require additional measures to remediate.

Overuse Can Harm Plants

If used excessively, synthetic fertilizers can harm plants, causing damage such as leaf burn. This risk requires careful application and monitoring to ensure that you’re not overusing these fertilizers.

Using Both Fertilizer Types Together For Balanced Soil Nutrition

Hands holding rich soil with  digital icons representing periodic elements

Interestingly, you can use organic and synthetic fertilizers together for effective plant nutrition management.

This doesn’t mean simultaneous usage but rather carefully planned nutritional operations that provide enough nutrients at every stage of plant development.

For instance, you can apply compost or manure before sowing or planting and then apply nitrate mineral fertilizers during crucial stages of plant development.

Choosing The Right Fertilizer: Organic vs. Synthetic Fertilizer

Bottle of root stimulator

Assessing Your Landscaping Needs

To choose the right fertilizer for your landscaping needs in Defiance, Ohio, you need to consider several factors.

These include the:

  • Type of plants you’re growing
  • Current soil condition
  • Specific nutrient requirements of your plants

Soil Testing

Soil testing is an essential step in assessing your landscaping needs.

It helps you understand the nutrient content and pH level of your soil, which are crucial factors in choosing the right fertilizer.

Plant-Specific Requirements

Different plants have different nutrient requirements.

Some plant types may demand more nitrogen; others may need higher levels of phosphorus or potassium.

Knowledge of these plant-specific requirements can help you select the correct fertilizer and guarantee your plants get the nourishment they need for optimal maturation.

Considering The Pros And Cons Of Each Type

When choosing a fertilizer, consider the pros and cons listed in this post.

Organic fertilizers are Earth-friendly and improve soil health, but they can be costlier and slower to show performance.

Synthetic fertilizers are cost-effective and provide immediate results but can pose environmental risks and harm plants if overused.

Let Farrell’s Lawn & Garden Center Help You Create Your Dream Landscape

We trust this article has enlightened you on the rewards and considerations of utilizing organic and synthetic fertilizers for your home landscaping needs. Understanding these can help you cause a major difference in the health and appearance of your lawn and garden.

At Farrell’s Lawn & Garden Center, we’re committed to helping homeowners in Defiance, Ohio, create beautiful, healthy landscapes. We provide a broad array of planting and landscaping services tailored to meet whatever your landscape may require.

Ready to transform your landscape? Fill out our contact form today or give us a call. We can’t wait to help you create the lawn or garden of your dreams.