CONCEPT AND APPROACH
Restoring and maintaining soil productivity is achieved through the logical and balanced use of organic and inorganic (chemical) plant nutrients in conjunction with organic carbon containing nutrient chelators and soil conditioners like Fulvic (also known as carbonic acids or organic acids), Humic and amino acids and the biological portion in the form of micro-organisms.
This is done to rectify soil structure and chemistry as well as biological soil life. By applying nature’s logic, the utilization of plant nutrients is optimized so as to increase yield (harvest) and to ensure better quality of farm produce. Agrilibrium have developed this plant nutrition concept which includes the 1:2 Water extract soil analysis, which allows us a better insight into understanding the delicate relationship between plant and soil.
The development and use of the 1:2 water extract soil analysis is the logical next step when the crucial and most important fact and basis for our concept, approach and product development is that roots and leaves of plants can only absorb or take up mineral nutrients (fertilizers) that are soluble in water. In other words, only, nutrients that will become a clear solution without any cloudiness or murkiness when stirred into clean water that can be utilized by plants as a useful source of nutrients. There-fore the common practice and belief that oxides for instance zinc oxide can be used as an effective seasonal supplier of zinc to a crop, or even worse used as a leaf spray to rectify zinc deficiencies, is not true. Although a very small portion of the active element in this form can be in solution (0.0004g/100mℓ @17.80C), it is never enough to satisfy the need of the crop, especially if the element is deficient in the soil.
The solubility fact also led to the development of high soluble concentration Sulphur and Fulvic acid soil product to address the commonly occurring Phosphorous: Sulphur ratio imbalance in soils.
Conventional soil analysis in simple terms means that chemical extractions of soil minerals are done with the intention to predict crop available nutrients. However, from a plant physiological point of view and supported by field results, crop response to recommendations using data from the traditional method of analysis shows a very poor correlation to crop response, especially phosphorous. Contrary to this, the 1:2 water extract soil analysis exactly quantifies the water-soluble nutrients in the soil solution which is the portion that is available to be taken up by plant roots. Field results from applied recommendations based on the latter quantified data from a number of different locations on various crops shows a good relationship with crop response. In various instances where crops like wine and table grapes as well as citrus were treated and fertilized according to this concept and where fertilization or plant nutrition was done accurately in a balanced and plant available form, the use of nitrogen for example, could be lowered significantly and simultaneously better yields with better quality was achieved with an increased return on investment to the farmer. A good example of improving sustainability in agriculture.
Both types of analysis have its role to play in better understanding soil nutrient content or reserves (conventional analysis) as well as nutrient availability (1:2 water extract) to the crop. Simply put, what is available, what has been applied and what is in reserve.