|1. Down to Earth||2. Bat Guano||3. Miracle-Gro|
Famers, gardeners and those who love their plants want to see their vegetables and flowering plants healthy and growing. For healthy plants, it is essential to provide them with the perfect fertilizers that contain an ideal combination of ingredients. But most of all, it is vital to give your plants an organic fertilizer that is hundred percent chemical-free, pesticide-free and natural.
Organic fertilizers are crucial not only because they release healthy nutrients, but also because over the time, they improve the structure of the soil and make the soil and plants stronger. If you are into farming or gardening and you are looking for the best organic fertilizers for your plants, then you would be glad to hear that there are abundant of options available in the market.
To make your selection easy, here we have picked top ten organic fertilizers for a vegetable garden, and along with that, we have also written some essential factors you must consider while choosing one. Later, you will also find FAQS that will help you buy the best fertilizer in this category. But let’s first take a look at our top ten list of organic fertilizers.
Top 10 Best Organic Fertilizers 2021
1. Earth Organic Alfalfa Meal Fertilizer Mix
Down To Earth is known to make various soil amendments, potting media, composts, and organic fertilizers. The brand makes use of microorganisms, fungi, and organic matter to make their fertilizers. They ensure to mix the best kind of organic nutrients in ideal quantity and without using any chemicals, low-quality fillers, or growth stimulants. If you are buying organic fertilizer from Down To Earth, you can be assured about its quality and efficacy.
This organic alfalfa meal fertilizer for plants contains dried and finely chopped alfalfa grass that is known to be a great source of both macro and micronutrients needed for plants and is apt for soil conditioning. If you have rose beds, then this fertilizer is the best one, as roses love alfalfa grass and earthworms too love it. It promotes growth and allows for more plentiful blooms. You can use it in all types of flowering shrubs, herbs, and vegetable plants. It comes with 2.5-0.5-2.5 formula in a five-pound box.
- Sun cured
- GMO free
- Natural source of amino acids, trace materials, potash and plant hormones
- Great for flowering plants and vegetables
- Helps the soil in recovering the nutrients
- A bit expensive and small sized
2. Dr. Earth Pure
Many gardeners love to use bat guano as a fertilizer, because it makes their plants greener, stronger, and healthier. It also helps the plants in the flowering process. Guano is excrement of the birds that live near the sea, but bat guano is the excrement of wild bats. Earlier in the 18th-century, bat guano was collected from the caves and was used to make gunpowder. But soon its importance in farming was seen, and today it has become one of the most popular organic fertilizers.
It not only improves the growth and structure of the plant, but also improves the structure of the soil as it works as a natural soil conditioner. It is also known to speed up the decomposition process and is a perfect compost activator. If you are looking for a fertilizer that has a long-lasting positive impact on your soil and plants, this is the fertilizeryou need. It contains microbes that will help in the growth of all kinds of plants, both indoor and outdoor.
Dr. Earth Bat Guano can be used on flowers, trees, shrubs, herbs, and vegetables. It is one of the best organic fertilizers available in the market.
- 100% natural fertilizer
- Source of fast acting nitrogen
Can be used for all flowering and vegetable plants
- Contains soil microbes, and organic nitrogen
- Can be used in both indoor as well as outdoor plants
- Contains less amount of potassium and nitrogen
3. Miracle-Gro Performance Organics
If you use Miracle-Gro Performance Organics granules on your plants, you will see their maximum growth in less than normal time. This fertilizer can be used in any type of house plants, trees, flowers, vegetables and shrubs. It is one of the easiest to use products that provides you with great results. All in all, it is supposed to be the best organic fertilizer for vegetable garden.
- Easy to use
- Gives result in 7 days
- Can be reapplied without the fear of plant burn
- Can be used in all the plants and trees
- Quantity is small
4. Dr. Earth 708P Organic 9 Fruit Tree Fertilizer
Dr. Earth’s Organic 9 fruit tree fertilizer is a great alternative for those looking for quick results because it releases nutrients quickly. This formula provides your plants with the much needed multi minerals, micro and macro nutrients. It gets you large and nutritious fruits and vegetables at the right time. This fertilizer is made using fish bone meal, alfalfa meal, feather meal, bone meal, kelp meal and flour, and potassium sulphate. Particularly, it is a great fertilizer for all types of fruits and berries.
- Allows healthy root development of plants
- Especially made for fruit trees and plants
- Made using all natural ingredients
- Free from sewage sludge, GMO and chicken manure
- Releases nutrients quickly and allows quick results
- You get much healthier and tastier fruits
- Some buyers received different formula than mentioned
5. Burpee Natural Organic
is is an all-purpose fertilizer that quickly releases nutrients for fast results. You can use it in vegetable gardens, trees, shrubs and containers. It is amongst the best organic fertilizers for vegetables, flowers, shrubs, herbs and trees.
- Organic and natural
- All purpose use
- Fast nutrient delivery
- Little bit pricier than other similar products
6. Miracle-Gro All Purpose Plant Nutrition
If you are looking for the best organic fertilizer for vegetables, then look no further than this one, as this will solve all your gardening problems with its quick water soluble formula. It boosts the growth of both flowering and vegetable plants. It reacts quickly and is very easy to use. Your plants start absorbing nutrients as soon as it is applied. The best thing is that it can be directly applied on your plants while watering or with the help of a garden feeder.
It can be used in the garden as well as in the container plants to get fast results. You don’t need to mix this fertilizer with soil to apply. Instead, you can directly apply it on your plants to keep the roots protected from any kind of damage. Unlike other fertilizers, this fertilizer can be applied frequently and it won’t cause any burning to the plants.
- Can be applied frequently
- Gives instant results
- Nutrient rich
- OMRI listed for organic use
- Suitable for both large and small areas
- 100% organic
- Quantity is less as compared to price
7. Burpee Natural And Organic Tomato
If you are looking for a vegetables specific fertilizer, then this Natural and Organic Tomato and Vegetable plant food manufactured by Burpee is a great alternative. It contains all essential plant nutrients and calcium that make your plant healthier and stronger. It is very easy to use and blends well with the soil. Once applied, it will feed your plants for up to 3 months.
- Provides long lasting results
- Great for vegetables and herbs
- Easy to apply
- Releases essential nutrients immediately and provides constant plant food for 3 months
- Full of nutrients, and microbes
- Blends easily with the soil
- Extremely good for patio container plants
- Problems in weight and packaging may occur
8. Espoma GR24 2-2-2 Organic Grow
It is a liquid fertilizer from Espoma that is made using high quality ingredients and provides quick results. It is extremely easy to use, as it mixes easily with water and can be used in both indoor and outdoor plants. Once you start using this fertilizer, you will see bigger and larger blooms and much greener plants.
It is full of kelp extract, natural protein, humic acid, and microbes that provide incredible results in no time. You require no measuring that makes it hassle free to use.
- Made in the US
- NPK ratio of 2-2-2
- Easy and hassle free to use
- Suitable for both indoor and outdoor plants
- Contains natural nutrients and protein
- Smells good
- Can burn plants if not used as per instructions
9. Uco Industries Worm Castings
Earthworm castings are nature’s best gift for your lawn. You will witness phenomenal growth in your plants and yields after using only a small number of Unco industries’ earthworm castings. The worms of this fertilizer are fed with nutritious organic material that improves the quality of castings. Earthworm casting from Unco Industries is full of nutrients that are balanced in two forms.
Plants instantly absorb one form of this casting, and another form slowly feeds the plants for a more extended period. This fantastic fertilizer provides excellent and sustainable results that make it very cost-effective. Moreover, it contains no smell and no toxic chemicals, which makes it much safe and convenient to use. It also contains healthy bacteria for better growth of plants at a reasonable speed.
These castings also have water-soluble nutrients, traces of different minerals, and plentiful of macronutrients. They are great for improving soil structure, water retention ability, drainage, and aeration. It is excellent for all kinds of flowers and vegetables. Undoubtedly, it is the best one you can get at this price.
- 100% natural and organic
- Improves the quality of soil
- Odor free
- Toxin free
- Safe for both kids and pets
- May not be suitable for all types of plants
10. Espoma EOFW30 Organic Fall Fertilizer
Espoma EOFW30 Organic Fall Fertilizer contains nitrogen and Bio-tone microbes, which work together to make your garden healthier. This product is certified by the USDA. It is a chemical free product that is hundred percent safe for kids and pets. It provides with slow release program that makes it perfect for plants and soil.This fertilizer is made using feather meal, poultry manure and sulphate of potash, and it can feed up to 5000 sq. ft. of area.
- Non poisonous food for plants
- Great for summer and spring application
- Provides great results on roses and grass
- Smells bad for some time, then goes away
Factors To Look For When Buying Best Organic Fertilizer
Chemical or synthetic fertilizers could be good sources of nitrogen and other compounds, but they lack other minerals. They might boost plants’ growth drastically, but they do no good to the soil or, rather, they are harmful to the land. On the other hand, the best organic fertilizers are a great source of all kinds of micro and macronutrients and have a good balance of all the components.
They contain nitrogen, potassium, calcium, microbes, and help the plant and soil stay healthier for a longer period. Many brands are selling 100% natural and organic fertilizers, out of which we have listed above some of the best ones. But if you are still not sure which is the best one for your garden, here we have listed the factors that will help you get one.
1. Type Of Organic Fertilizer
Organic fertilizers are made using dead plants and animals and their bi-products. You can apply these fertilizers using hands or rakes, as they are safe to use. These natural fertilizers break down slowly when they release oxygen. The different types of organic fertilizers are:
Plant-based organic fertilizers are best because they break down easily, they have less smell, and they offer much more conditioning to the soil. They also add moisture retention to poor quality soil. Alfalfa meal, cottonseed meal, molasses, legume cover crops, Kelp seaweed, compost tea, etc. are some of the most common plant-based fertilizers.
These organic fertilizers are made using animal manure, bone, and blood meal. These fertilizers are considered as best organic fertilizers for leafy plants, because they tend to add lots of nitrogen to them.
They add essential nutrients to the soil and reduce pH levels. Calcium and Epsom salt are best examples of mineral-based fertilizers.
4. Worm Castings
Worm castings are also another form of organic fertilizer that are produced from the earthworms. Worm castings are nothing but waste from earthworms. They are also known as vermicast. When earthworms eat the compost and release their waste, they make the soil more fertile.
They look like small ball-shaped particles and are known to make the soil aeration and drainage better. They also increase water retention in the soil. Many plant nurseries sell these castings. When buying them, make sure they are not saturated, dry, crumbly and stinky.
5. NPK Ratio
Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), Potassium (K) are three of the major plant nutrients. Phosphorus (P) is essential for the excellent health of rooting, fruiting, flowering plants. Potassium (K) takes care of the overall health of the plant. Nitrogen is responsible for healthy growth and green color. These three components should be in sufficient quantity in fertilizers or as per the need of the plant.
6. Other Minerals
Plants also need calcium, molybdenum, magnesium, sulfur, zinc, boron, and manganese. Good fertilizers will have these minerals in small quantities from natural sources, and that’s what make a perfectly balanced organic fertilizer.
If you are concerned about budget, then you should find out the exact size of the area you want to feed and buy the precise quantity, as this will not only save the wastage, but will also save you money. You can easily find some organic fertilizers as per your budget.
8. Different Fertilizer Formula For Different Plants
Your fertilizer mixture will depend upon the type of vegetable you want to grow in your garden. For example, if you are growing green leafy plants or vegetables, you will need a higher nitrogen level as they suck all nitrogen from plants. If you are growing tomatoes, extra nitrogen will make your leaves grow more significantly and not vegetables. At the same time, seedling or sprouts require more phosphorus. So, you will need to choose the formula as per your plant type.
9. Release Speed
Some fertilizers like water-soluble ones work faster than others, but if you use them in large amounts, they can dry your plant by sucking all the water and moisture content, which is known as a chemical burn. While slow-release fertilizers don’t cause the burn and are not required to be applied again. Thus, they prove beneficial in the long term.
10. Method Of Application
You should consider the method of application that you are comfortable with. Fertilizer can be applied using handheld sprayers, bare hands, or rakes.
Organic fertilizers may contain human excreta, chicken manure, chicken feathers, alfalfa, or corn gluten meal, etc., and they are mixed with many other nutrients. If you are concerned about your fertilizer’s odor, don’t buy the fertilizer made using animal by-products, human or animal manure, or fish products. Blood meal and chicken manure have the worst smell, but they are the best type of fertilizers.
If you prefer vegan products, you should consider reading the label carefully. You will find many plant-based fertilizers in the market, but you should see the type of ingredients used in making them before buying.
11. Soil Test
To get the perfect nutrients in your fertilizer, you should get your soil tested. The test will tell you the exact nutrients your soil lacks, depending on which you will be able to choose the right type of fertilizer.
How Is Organic Fertilizer Better Than Inorganic Fertilizer?
Here are a few reasons why every farmer and gardener must use organic fertilizers in their soil:
1. Contains Both Macro And Micronutrients
Organic fertilizers contain both micro and macronutrients and traces of many other minerals that plants need, while these are not found in chemical fertilizers. The exact ratio of nutrients in these fertilizers is unknown, yet they are a healthy food source for your plant. Chemical-based fertilizers have correctly measured dose of nutrients that you exactly need. They may suddenly boost your plant growth, but the nutrient contained in vegetables and fruits of such plants is deficient.
2. Slow But Healthy
If you want quick response form organic fertilizers, you should use fish emulsion or sea-weed extracts, and your soil should be warm enough to let the organic fertilizers breakdown. Whereas chemical fertilizers will respond quickly, but in the long run, they are not suitable for plants and harm them in the long run.
3. Safe For Kids And Animals
Organic fertilizers are safe to use, and they don’t harm humans and animals. Organic fertilizers are safe for the environment, as they create no pollution and have no toxins. But chemical fertilizers are harmful to both humans and pets, and also to the environment.
4. No Need For Protective Gear
To use organic fertilizers, you don’t need any expensive protective equipment or clothing, but to use chemical fertilizers, these safety gears are a must.
When it comes to the environment-friendly option, organic fertilizers are perfect for both plants, soil, and the environment, because they are made from naturally occurring products meaning they come directly from nature. Organic fertilizers are known to discharge nutrients slowly, and they improve the quality of the soil.
They also enhance the ability of soil to hold water and its drainage. In the long run, they help to make your soil and plants healthier. Whereas chemical fertilizers are fast dose, and they have no positive effect on the earth. If they are overused, they may make your soil and water polluted. They can change the land’s pH, create a pest problem, release toxic chemicals, or harm the greenhouse gases.
FAQs on Organic Fertilizers
Q1. What Is Meant By Organic Fertilizer And Why Is It Important?
Organic fertilizers are the ones that are minimally processed, and they have ingredients in their natural form. They are broken by microbes (bacteria or fungi) when added to the soil. When completely decomposed, these fertilizers release nutrients to the soil. You can buy these fertilizers from the market or make your own compost pile.
Organic fertilizers are act prolonged in comparison to chemical fertilizers, and they don’t overdose your plants. These fertilizers provide both macro and micronutrients to the plants. They not only improve plant health, but also have a positive impact on soil structure and soil health. Commercial organic fertilizers for plants could be expensive, but they are much more sustainable, safe, and eco-friendly.
Q2. What Kind Of Ingredients Are Used To Make Organic Fertilizers?
Organic fertilizers are made using different natural ingredients, such as animal manure, human excreta, animal matter, vegetable matter, bones, slurry, and guano.
Q3. Can Excess Use Of Organic Fertilizer Do Any Harm?
Yes, excess use of organic fertilizer can lead to increased soil pH that can be harmful to plants, as well as to humans and animals. Always follow manufactures’ instructions when using any fertilizers.
Q4. Why Is Organic Fertilizer Better For Soil?
Plants take all the nutrients from the soil, and organic fertilizer releases those nutrients back to it. Therefore, it improves the composition and texture of the earth. In the long term, cheap inorganic fertilizer does more harm than good to your soil.
Q5. How long Will It Take For Organic Fertilizer To Show Effect?
It takes around 2 to 6 weeks to show noticeable results, because an organic fertilizer requires to decompose before it releases its nutrients.
Q6. Can I Make My Own Organic Fertilizer?
Yes, you can, if you have sufficient space, equipment, and organic waste.
Q7. If I Am Into Organic Farming, Can I Use GMOs?
No, GMOs are prohibited in all kinds of organic farming.
Q8. What Are Few Advantages Of Organic Fertilizers?
Some benefits of organic fertilizers are:
- They help in balancing the ecosystem of the soil
- They help in boosting plant health naturally
- They don’t leave behind any artificial compounds
- No chemical interventions are used in the process of decomposition of organic fertilizers
- They provide sufficient nutrients at a slow rate and prevents over-fertilization
- They help in restoring vitamins, mineral content, and acids of the soil
- They help in eliminating surface water and soil contamination
Best Organic Fertilizer For Healthier Plants Is Essential For Healthy Growth Of Plants
When you look at the internet, you will find hundreds of options of organic fertilizers out there, and it can become a challenging task for you to find the best fertilizer among so many alternatives. Yet, it is important to select the perfect fertilizer for your plants so that they and stay healthy and produce nutritious and tasty yields.
To buy the best organic fertilizer for the vegetable garden, you must consider all factors listed here. But if you are still not sure, you can always pick the best one from our list of top ten fertilizers mentioned above. When it comes to the best organic fertilizers, you must give preference to the quality and not the price.
James Fields is the founder of Gardener to Farmer. His passion for gardening goes back to his childhood days when he would visit his grandfather during the holidays and help him with the plants in the backyard. This has now translated to creating a dependable resource for gardening.