Garden Alert: Enzymatic Soil Conditioners and Time Release Fertilizers
by Donald Ray Burger
Attorney at Law

In the Spring/Summer 1996 issue of the Worm's Way catalogue I noticed a warning about mixing enzymatic soil conditionsrs and time release fertilizers. Worm's Way (800) 274 9676 sells a product called Nitron A-35, which they describe as an "enzyme soil conditioner which aids in germination, acts to detoxify soil, and boosts overall soil ecology." They warn not to use this product on soils to which time release fertilizers have been applied "because Nitron will break the time release encapsulation and make all of the fertilizer available at once, which could burn plants."

A similar warning is given with regard to the Worm's Way product "Earth Juice Catalyst", which is described as "a biological active product that will stimulate growth and production."

Time release fertilizers (such as Osmocote) are far too expensive to use regularly on grass, but many gardners apply them to vegetable and rose gardens. If you are among such gardners, check the label to make sure any soil activator you are also applying will not cause the time release capsules to break down and burn your plants.

Last revised June l5, 1996

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