Plant Nutrition

Organic vs Inorganic; Immobilization vs Mineralization


Chronic N amendment led to soil acidification and excess foliar Mn in forbs which reduced photosynthetic rates. (

“Although the quantitative role remains unknown, ON compounds should be
considered as significant contributors to plant N nutrition.” (

Enzymes need metal atoms to work. Metal means they conduct electrons.
There they are  again! I like to think of them like batteries in a TV
remote. Plastic and rubber make up the majority of the TV remote, but it
is useless without the batteries. The same goes for enzymes and other
compounds, which is why atoms such as Magnesium (chlorophyll), Zinc,
Manganese and others are so important.


Soil pH is often 1 point higher or lower than the bulk soil around it (Brady/Weil)

Conventional Management

x% of even synthetic fertilizer runs through a microbe first! Talk about inefficiency of synthetic fertilizer use, especially as more is applied.

Divorce of animals from the landscape. Nutrients piled up from indoor animals becomes a toxin

Animal integration supercharges the system to decompose plant material biologically rather than chemically through oxidation. It’s not uncommon to see residue from two or more years that has yet to decompose in some soils.



here are ongoing positive compounding and cascading effects from
building up the natural Nutrient cycle that just aren’t provided when we
substitute synthetic versions of these nutrients. These include organic
matter building, soil structure building, better water infiltration and
water holding capacity. Synthetic fertilizers cause issues, like
organic matter degradation, soil acidification which neccessitates the
need for lime, poorer water cycling, etc.
We don’t know everything, but we do keep finding good compounding
effects like


We discovered elephants and dinosaurs and plants because they’re macroscopic like us. However, modern technology allows us to see the We can begin to measure them, which means we can begin to manage them. There are vast untapped pools of nutrients waiting to be accessed by the billions and trillions of employees in the soil. If their demands are met, they will get back to work for you. They work efficiently. They work around the clock. They work holidays.


As our knowledge of the natural world deepens, we’re  A long-term winning strategy is to emphasize those two factors in balance with short-term needs. Think of it like money. It’s foolish to blow all your money now because you’ll be broke in the future. It’s equally foolish to put 100% of your paycheck into a savings account and starve/freeze to death because you don’t want to spend money in the present.



Like the Energy and Water Cycles, living organisms and landscapes are healthy and balanced when nutrient flow is at the right pace. Too fast and we create a poison. Too slow and we create a deficiency.



the nutrient density of our food is decreasing, we produce more than enough calories to feed billions of people more than there are, we’re wasting a lot of energy and fertilizer in the process. Active biology increases nutrient density, can maintain yields and do it much more efficiently. Why not investigate it if that possibility is out there and producers have shown it to be true?