If you are of a like mind, please follow the following link and take action.
You know you want to!
Here is a link that might be useful: Petition against Monsanto
Thanks for passing along the link beeman...
Utter nonsense. The Monsanto patent expired more than 10 years ago on Glyphosphate and many companies make it. It is a great product and if you think it is dangerous you are just falling for the propaganda.
The stuff has been proven 100% safe in multiple studies both private and from our government. As long as you don't inject it into your body or drink gallons of the concentrate you will be just fine. .
So peer-reviewed research like the following that reuters covered two months ago is just made up? Nobody cares about the patent status, Monsanto is clearly the big player here, increasing the use of the herbicide worldwide with it's GM crops. Monsanto claims it is safe while the scientific community disagrees, period.
Show the methodology of the study.posting a link to a news article means NOTHING. They take 99% pure glyphosphate and feed it to rats and mice daily in huge doses and when it shows damage they yell see!!!!! it is dangerous. Or they take the glyphosphate and inject massive doses in to the bodies of the same rodents and when it eventually causes damage they point to that as proof. Don't be a sheep do your own research on it and not from people that have an agenda.
Glyphosphate simply blocks an enzyme that plants need to produce a life sustaining amino acid. Animals don't have or use this enzyme because we acquire that amino acid from our diet.
The EPA rates Glyphosphate a 3 out of 4 with 1 being toxic and 4 being completely harmless. The EPA tells us we could eat ONLY food from ground treated with glyphosphate our entire lives and still have ZERO chance of having any harm.
For example..if you drank coffee in the same dosage and concentration of glyphosphate they fed to the rats you would die after the first dose. You would have to drink many bottles a day of the concentrated glyphosphate for months to show any damage.
Believe me or don't but at least do your own research and check out those organizations trying to fool you. Go to wikipedia and read the methodology they used on the rats to show harm and then we will discuss it.
This post was edited by bamboo_rabbit on Sun, Jun 16, 13 at 19:52
There's other forums that this might be more appropriate. It takes everyones' diligence to keep this forum focused on growing fruit.
Many a forum isn't worth reading anymore because it has lost its focus.
Article below appeared yesterday and is relevant to this thread.
As an aside, I use glyphosate. Even today, for many applications, it's still more effective, safe, and environmentally friendly than other herbicides.
Here is a link that might be useful: Maine Voices: Backers of GMO labeling unthinkingly buy conspiracy-based arguments
Olpea, that was a great article, and it's really amazing what people will believe or not believe without ever really looking into the subject. And yes Reuters is one of the worst offenders of spreading falsehoods.
My opinion- people, including informed and intelligent experts, often come to vastly different conclusions after digesting same information.
People also consistently accuse the other side of an argument of ignorance, sometimes correctly and sometimes not, but consistently having little affect on changing minds.
This forum has done a pretty good job of keeping these kinds of discussions civil. Olpea contributes greatly to this civil tone.
Anyone who thinks this kind of discussion doesn't belong on this site can easily avoid such topics by looking at subject of posting. It was pretty obvious where this one would go and even what positions would likely be taken by specific posters.
I do think BR provided good information and would like to read a specific rebuttal on that info. Anyone living in Florida has good reason to appreciate herbicides.
99% of the Monsanto petitions/etc are just an appeal to ignorance. Its more of the "I can't pronounce this so I need to start a crusade".
People need to take more science classes.
Agree 100%......just a bunch of anti science nonsense. Glyphosphate was a brilliant discovery and if a person takes the time to look at the science behind it they will see it stands zero risk of harming humans. You get people that state it is building up in the soil!!!! which is utter nonsense as it is consumed by the soil bacteria and is gone very quickly.
People hate Monsanto....I get it, I don't agree but I get it and part of that hate makes them spread lies in an ends justify the means approach that drives me up the wall.
What I don't understand is how people fall so easily for the disinformation those with an agenda are pushing. Don't people think for themselves anymore? People read something on the web and immediately accept that it is true and then repeat it. I guess it is the same people that send those emails around that snopes has to disprove. Some people are just so darn gullible.
This post was edited by bamboo_rabbit on Mon, Jun 17, 13 at 11:36
This is not a case of disinformation, and we'll skip the Reuters article for the original study:
Most of you have obviously not read it, since it is NOT just about ingesting huge amounts of the stuff and there is plenty of evidence that glyphosphate is more problematic than the EPA currently says.
Why is that article published in a physics journal rather than a medical journal? My guess is because Entropy is the only journal that would accept it.
"The bold conclusions reached by the review are not supported by the evidence. The authors did include many citations, but did not look at followup to many of the citations or willfully ignored them. There are many leaps of correlation to causation that do not fit their own hypothesis, but they force fit them anyway. The connections to a popular topic among pseudoscientists, gut bacteria, are very shaky at best. The review is easily dismissed, and already has been by science writers with expertise and good science sense."
From Collide-A-Scape, a blog at discovermagazine.com:
"The paper is by two authors with dubious credentials and is such a mashup of pseudoscience and gibberish that actual scientists have been unable to make sense of it."
This post was edited by shazaam on Mon, Jun 17, 13 at 13:06
Sorry fabaceae_native, nobody here is buying the junk science your pushing.
Nobody can confirm the results, why the study is no good. One must be able to duplicate results, and the other side has hundreds that confirm findings. So your claim that it is evidence is false. Not until others come to the same conclusion, and that has not happened. Why you wish to believe one out of hundreds of studies makes no sense to us, sorry. Many studies show that water will kill you if you drink enough of it. And that does happen. You also cannot live without it. So it is possible to spin that water should be banned. This seems to be exactly what is going on here. As many have pointed out the study has numerous flaws, and jumps to conclusions that are not really true. Nobody else is willing to even try to confirm it, as it is such a bad study.
This post was edited by Drew51 on Mon, Jun 17, 13 at 13:53
This nobody (who has a degree in environmental science with a focus on chemistry) is open to many of the multiple studies that are coming out with evidence against glyphosate being a benign compound.
Do I throw my full support on the issue...certainly not. The variables involved are so complex and poorly understood that anybody who claims certainty by either side is a suspect source.
There are a lot poor studies and extrapolation being used by the anti group. But there are also numerous credible studies (worldwide) showing that many of the claims monsanto has pushed regarding it's break down, accumulation, and long term environmental impact are debatable or categorically wrong.
So exactly who is "falling for the disinformation those with an agenda are pushing"?
I always find it surprising how opposing viewpoints on an issue like this feel compelled to denigrate the opposition as uneducated, foolish, gullible, or week minded.....because they don't agree with them (and they after all must be sharp witted and free thinking and therefore correct)
That does pretty clearly sum it up.......
I'm both open-minded and skeptical, so I usually go on and throw out the extreme views on either side on issues like this. So I can tend to piss off everybody!
So I tried to read the pdf, but it's obviously difficult for someone without a more broad education in biology and chemistry than I have. I do know research because of my educational background (perception/cognition in the AI field). What jumped out at me was that the authors are taking on too many topics for one paper, imho. I'm skeptical that all of their links (hypotheses themselves, right?) could be covered well in one piece of research.
I'm sure some of the ideas in the paper may have some merit (or not). The questions are interesting, in any case. But they are biting off too much at once, I think. They'd either have to be extremely brilliant for that to go well, or they are not being rigorous enough in investigating each small piece, imho.
I do hope more study goes into the subject(s), and I never assume anything is safe as early as anyone with a profit motive does ;)
B.S. in Environmental Science, M.S. in Soil Science, and working on a Ph.D. in Crop Science here. I have yet to see a peer reviewed publication that shows glyphosate is a threat to human health when used according to the label. In fact, multiple studies show that glyphosate can stimulate soil microbial activity.
If you'd like a link to the papers, send me a message. I'd be happy to forward them on.
Does anyone here know much about plant cytochrome p450's role in human gut bacteria, for instance? That's perhaps the first question to investigate deeply given the study.
It may be a good question. Or not. I certainly wouldn't know. I don't trust sites named things like skeptoid.com, just on principle. I like the dry, non-affiliated, academic stuff, myself. Are there any regular ole objective scientists reviewing the study anywhere?
Both sides on this topic have their heels dug in pretty deep, so it can be hard to get to the bottom of it. In the mean time, it seems reasonable to label all GMO products as such. Those that want it (or could care less) can have it, and those that don't want it can avoid it. Plenty of folks are willing to pay for non-GMO, even if it somehow adds to the cost (which may of may not be true in all cases).
Anyone who wants to buy non-GMO food can do so with current laws and packaging information. There is no need for labeling. If the food product is not labeled as 100% USDA Organic and contains one of the following or their derivatives, then it almost certainly contains a GMO crop: corn, soy, cotton, canola (rape), beet sugar, alfalfa, papaya.
I was reading an interesting article the other day about bindweed, AKA wild morning glory. Truly a weed from hell.
The author lives in a one of the big wheat production states and mentioned that she knows of former organic wheat farmers that have gone back to conventional methods because bindweed was taking over their fields and they needed to use glysphosphate to control it.
A discussion about the danger of any herbicide should include the context of how important these chemicals can be in the name of reasonably efficient food production.
The price of bread in places like Egypt can be of existential significance to the many people living in abject poverty. The cost of important crops like wheat, corn and soy would go up significantly without products like glysphosphate.
Higher prices would not affect Whole Foods customers much, but it could lead to starvation for many millions of people already on the edge.
Note that I'm not on the side that wants to make GMO and Roundup illegal. The genie is out of the bottle, and there's a market for it, so consumers should have a choice.
GMO's are pretty pervasive and the list is constantly growing, hence the need for more/better labelling. Since corn and soy are heavily GMO, most commercial meats are impacted, and whatever (bad thing) is there is concentrated. Rennet which is used in cheese-making can be GMO. There are GMO peppers as well. What isn't known is the long term effects and the integration of all the different GMOs. Any testing that was done was done in isolation.
Yes, if you buy organic it means non-GMO, but the best way to empower consumers is at the point of sale. We list a lot of info on labels so that consumers can make informed decisions.
There are viable organic controls for bindweed, and you will find plenty of farmers going from conventional to organic and vice versa.
Let's not forget that intellectual property law is a big stumbling block for a number of farmers regarding GMOs.
"But there are also numerous credible studies (worldwide) showing that many of the claims Monsanto has pushed regarding it's break down, accumulation, and long term environmental impact are debatable or categorically wrong. "
Could you please point us to those studies? Unlike what people think, I'm not on any side, well on the side of the truth. It appears many of have never seen those studies, but apparently you have, so educate us please.
I guess my major problem with this debate and most debates it appears truth, or facts never matter, it's all about emotion.
I would love to see those studies. The other studies by Monsanto to, anybody have a link? Any independant studies?
I know this has been studied for decades now.
This for profit stuff makes me laugh, everything is for profit, this forum is for profit, the computer I type on, the shirt I'm wearing, the medication I take, my glasses, everything is for profit as it makes no sense otherwise.
Organics are made to make huge profits!
Lot's of money in carbon credits too! So many push for it. Al Gore now has hundreds of millions in his bank saving the environment.
This post was edited by Drew51 on Tue, Jun 18, 13 at 10:12
Hey, profit is good! I like profit :) But conflicts of interest are disclosed in research for a reason. It's less objective than outside researchers doing the studies, and more objectivity is always better in research.
Drew, to be honest I can't give you study citation without spending time doing the searching...maybe in the winter but I am far too busy for it now. I am not looking to argue this. Dig around a bit, it is out there and not all that hard to track down if you wish to pursue it.
I did spend a fair bit of time researching it about 5 years ago when I was deciding how much if at all I was going to use glyphosate. Even at that time there was a considerable body of evidence to support the claim of mine you quoted. The most well known examples are cited in the wikipedia listing under legal cases (I know pretty weak "source" but a place to start) and relate to exaggerated claims of "harmless" and intentional falsifying of studies.
As I recall the bulk of the studies coming up against Roundup were out of the EU...not terribly surprising. Some that got a lot of press were pretty weak and relied on statistical extrapolation. But there were many that appeared to be sound research with hard data. Again working from recall, these focused on rates of breakdown in differing soils, surface water contamination levels,toxicity to amphibians, and the fate/reactivity of the primary breakdown products.
To an earlier point of ferroplasm's, I found no solid studies with direct link to impacting human health. That would really be a smoking gun and require study replication and legal action if upheld. I doubt anything like that will come out. If such a link exists, it is doubtful that it is a direct one...but that doesn't necessarily make the product safe or harmless. It is a wonderfully complex world and long term health effects of any reactive product are hard to track unless they are particularly strong.
Separately, I was not throwing out my education as any kind of trump card (I realize it kind of reads that way) It was meant as a response to the repeated claims that only people who were uneducated and didn't understand the science could doubt the safety of the glyphosate
"There are GMO peppers as well. What isn't known is the long term effects and the integration of all the different GMOs. Any testing that was done was done in isolation."
This is the problem with the anti-GMO and organic people. They don't actually read things. They skim, and then pass off as fact.
Read that page you link to: They think there might be GMO peppers in China, but they have no evidence of it.
My 2 cents, about Monsanto and others. It is well documented that tobacco companies, drug companies, and others have withheld information from the public that would be damaging to the sales of their product. Their main concern is the price of their stock, the welfare of the public and the environment is toward the bottom of their list of priorities.
Monsanto has more money than all of us together, they hire individuals to lobby elected officials, many of whom put money and power before the welfare of the citizens.
I do not claim to know if Roundup is safe or not. I believe that if Monsanto had damaging information they would keep it to themselves.
So I don't trust them, and if you do, that is your business.
To say that tobacco companies withheld damaging information (true) and thereby insinuate that Monsanto is probably doing the same seems completely unfair. I'm not suggesting we should blindly trust big business to look out for our interests, but neither should we assume that they are evil.
JoppaRich, this is the problem with people who make snap judgments about other people. The article shows that there are 12 US sites under trial.
This illustrates that there are more and more GMO crops becoming available, hence the need for labeling. There are GMO potatoes and a number of other crops not listed by Ferroplasm. You can do your own web searches if you would like.
There are no GM potatoes currently marketed for human consumption that I am aware of. 'Newleaf' is discontinued. 'Amflora' is pulp production only. mrclint, what variety are you referring to and who is the developer?
don555, I think that we should generally assume that corporations are amoral. The idea that they are or some are evil seems silly to me. I don't expect them to exhibit morality- that is not their job. Their job is to compete and win and it is up to the government to make sure the game has some rules that protect citizens. This is as far as I'm taking this thought on a forum about fruit plants.
GMO's are not actually a subject that has much to do with hobby fruit growing, IMO. Glysphosphate actually does have some relavency but how do GMO's fit in here?
"GMO's are not actually a subject that has much to do with hobby fruit growing,"
That depends on how or what you use as fertilizer. GMO crops are used heavily as animal feed, so if you're a big commercial manure or chemical fertilizer user, it may have a sizable impact on your hobby fruit growing.
Ferroplasm, Google is your friend. I'm not interested in feeding you links, so that you can draw conclusions about me. There are those that care, don't care, or are still open minded about GMO's. I happen to fall into the latter category, erring on the side of caution until further information is available. This stuff is evolving and moving very quickly. You cannot manage what you cannot track, therefore I would appreciate GMO labeling across the board.
"That depends on how or what you use as fertilizer. GMO crops are used heavily as animal feed, so if you're a big commercial manure or chemical fertilizer user, it may have a sizable impact on your hobby fruit growing. "
I don't see how? The DNA is broken down, all DNA is made of the same thing, 4 amino acids in varying sequences. The acids do not survive digestion. I guess it is possible any enzymes made from the DNA could be present, no I take that back too. As enzymes are some of the largest molecules on earth, and doubtful they could remain intact. You're saying if you eat pork, you're a pig now. I have been called a swine, but still resemble a human.I need a better explanation on how digested GMO's change manure. I don't think that is possible.
Even more so in cows whom have multiple stomachs and can digest about anything fed to them.
It's pure paranoia if you think chemical fertilizer is changed by GMO's, that is actually extremely funny!
Nitrogen is made during a supernova. Anything else it ends up in, it still is just nitrogen. Most chemical fertilizer is made from non-living things, else it would be organic fertilizer. It is only basic elements made from supernovas.
So maybe organics have a GMO line in production, but not chemical fertilizers. Still, I don't see how that matters one bit. Please elaborate on how GMO's change organic fertilizer?
What is different from non GMO organic? What evil spirits does it have?
This post was edited by Drew51 on Thu, Jun 20, 13 at 8:09
It is a whole new topic, but I think the far greater concern with compost derived from animal manures is contamination with persistent herbicides...those do not break down in digestion. We have had a terrible time of it here in VT with widespread contamination of commercially produced compost......what a nightmare, many folks have had fields and gardens ruined (for a few years at least). The state has begun aggressive testing of compost feedstocks and finding the contamination problem to be very widespread...
Rob, are not modern herbicides supposed to break down? I guess this is why so many were banned. But that makes sense, and I can see how that is possible.
What is cool, is they found it. make your own compost, and you have no way of knowing what is in it. Like I live 1 mile from a very old landfill. Used back in the day they dumped mercury, oil, and all kinds of stuff in the soil. Unless you have your soil tested, no telling what is in it. Especially if you use leaves from very old trees with deep roots.
In my area large amounts of natural lead and other heavy metals were reported by the state. Certain trees like red oak have the ability to uptake arsenate, others too.
You have to know what to look for in soil tests too
Examples of arsenate-containing minerals include adamite, alarsite, annabergite, erythrite and legrandite.
Bacteria can also breakdown various fuels into arsenate.
these are products designed not to break down
From a fact sheet put out by one supplier last summer when the issue first broke:
"What are persistent herbicides?
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines herbicides as chemicals used to manipulate or control undesirable vegetation. Persistent herbicides are a class of systemic herbicides that are used to control a wide variety of broadleaf weeds. These herbicides are formulated to survive multiple years of exposure in certain growing environments. They are typically designed for use in hayfields, horse pastures, golf courses, right-of-ways, and lawns to kill off unwanted weeds and to remain effective for several months to years. These herbicides do not impact grasses.
Chemical compounds in persistent herbicides
There are a number of compounds that fall into the category of persistent herbicides. The most prevalent are Clopyralid (Dow Agrosciences), Aminopyralid (Dow Agrosciences, 2005), Aminocyclopyrachlor (DuPont, 2010), and Picloram (Dow Agrosciences). Less prevalent compounds in the same class include fluroxypyr, dopyralid, and triclopyr. Many of these compounds appear on labels in slightly different variations making identification by the untrained applicator difficult."
Almost all of these have been banned in VT for several years. The state has traced the contamination to commercial hay and diary feed. The herbicides then pass unaltered through the digestive tract. Nor do they breakdown during the active composting in commercial "hot" piles.
Because they are systemic herbicides, straw and hay products coming off treated fields can also be a route for contamination when brought into the garden or orchard as mulch.
Unfortunately they are remarkably effective and even trace contamination can severely retard growth and yield on broad leaf plants.
How do these products wind up in commercial composts? I buy a product from a nearby yard they make themselves with local lawn clippings and leaves. I guess some 2-4 D type materials might dilutely enter the mix but I can't see how such heavy quantities of material could come from yard waste or any other common source of compost material.
Not that there isn't a logical source- I just can't think of it.
I try to stay away from GMOs, but my feeling is that any company with its fingers so far up the governments ...backside...that it can't be good for the avg person... Personally I think population (overpopulation) is our biggest problem...its like cancer...we do everything to fight cancer once its too late, but do very little to prevent it in the first place...
"Unfortunately they are remarkably effective and even trace contamination can severely retard growth and yield on broad leaf plants"
Have a link from a university study to back that up?
It takes astounding little of this stuff (1-10 parts per billion to, effect plants like beans tomatoes and potatoes) this is below the threshold of most testing procedures.
I don't know the threshold for fruit trees (I doubt one has been established).
One major entry has been the use of animal manure.
Persitent Herbicide use is permitted on crops destined for animal feed. That feed is either sold out of state or sold and mixed for commercial resale in smaller lots by large distributors...eventually passing through the critters and then the manure ends in compost.
Another path they have known about for sometime is a the use of woodchips from ROW and roadside clearing that were treated...sometimes years before.
Grass clippings are another known source...these herbicides are perfect for weed free lawns, Many facilities here stopped taking grass clippings several years ago when people were just catching on to the issue and use in lawns more widespread.
The regulated use of these products varies state by state. But the crops/byproducts themselves move all over carrying the chemicals with them which can make it hard for composters to know if their feed stocks are "clean"
I just found this link to a statement by a group of commercial composters. A bit long, but lots of relevant info and some good visual reference.
Here is a link that might be useful: persistent herbicide in compost
Rob, I have over 40 years experience manure scrounging for vegetable gardens and top dressing for trees and have used untested manure thousands of times and have never had a bad experience.
I also use wood chips made from arborist chips either right out of the chipper or subsequently shredded into a more pricey form of mulch. I'm all over scores of estates that use tons of the stuff in their EXTENSIVE managed landscapes.
I've never encountered or heard of any of these herbicide contamination problems (except in media accounts of far away places).
It's one thing to say problems occur, but how often would be a useful addition of information so people aren't needlessly frightened away from products that need to be recycled.
The article sited contains scant detail on the actual extent of the problem, simply noting what could be a few extremely isolated cases. They even included information of an herbicide problem that had nothing to do with compost, seemingly for affect.
My anecdotal information deserves to be looked at with some suspicion, I know, but do you have any statistical information regarding the frequency of this problem?
I don't have stats for you. I was unaware of the issue completely untill last summer when wide spread problems popped up all over VT. At first they thought it was just one major supplier. But it became apparent as the season progressed that many supplies were contaminated to varying extents. It was rough on hobby gardners it was brutal on some small farms and nurseries. Ground to which the compost was applied might be effectively lost for 2-3 seasons
The state has taken it seriously enough to get involved and develop new testing protocols (DOW wouldn't tell them how to do it in an organic mix). Then started testing lots of feedstocks both in and out of state.....many positives.
I know 2 market gardners who have gotten bad loads already this year.
I don't doubt your experience. But I can tell you people up here are taking it quite seriously.
Bamboo, on P 5 of the link there is an image of plant response to levels of contamination. The citation appears to come out of the university of Ohio.
So the main source is feed fed to animals in commercial feed lot settings? Maybe we should stick to that source as a focus of concern and not go overboard about all the other possibilities.
I would guess that municipal projects that produce compost out of yard waste are probably safe as are composts made from non feedlot industry materials- such as Sweet Peet.
Also it seems very unlikely that wood chips would be a source of contamination in any but extremely rare cases unless you live somewhere that has a major source of herbicide killed trees. Are these products used in forests managed for lumber?
I'm quite surprised that you know of 2 market growers affected this year. I would expect them to make their own compost instead of trucking in something from a suspect source. Compost tends to be pricey.
Feed lots are certainly of concern, but really any one buying in feed is at risk. They found contamination coming out of several dairy farms, small horse farms, and a place raising sheep.
I think you are reading greater alarm into my comments then intended. I use compost and wood chips and straw/hay mulch. I am not suggesting that anyone stop doing that. Only trying to alert folks to potential problems .
Most of the small time market growers I know do make a lot of their own compost, but they almost all buy in loads as well.
Right now the state is recommending any commercial growers buy their compost well ahead of use, and do a small test planting of beans(which are hypersensitive) before widespread use of the load. I think it's impracticality for anyone else to do this, who has time to do that?
They hope to develop a more rapid sensitive test soon, but as of now that is supposed to be the best safety check.
The point of the reuters article was to see if longer term studies were needed, and it seems that both of these studies agree on such things.
Same thing as the reuters one. Both of those articles never state that either or is right. Any scientific study will meet criticism its just that the GMO thing is more public.
Another study suggesting further long term studies (yeah, maybe a bit bias...)
Then there is this one
this is the one fab posted, and again, suggests that more studies need to be done (with apparently the EPA is already doing in the US). Im assuming the study was published in entropy, because roundup is thought to cause problems with ecosystems (or the opposition of GMO/monsanto say)
Also, im sure youve all heard about the oregon wheat fiasco:
The point is, many people who are against gmo, do indeed need to stop beliveing everything they read on the internet. Motherearthnews.com is a horrible source.... on the other hand, many people for GMO, cannot ignore the studies that are comming to light now, and at the very least long term studies need to be done.
Rob, I just worry about so many alarms going off that one could become immobilized. But my main point was just to get clarification and you've provided that. Thank you.
Lots of people are fully mobilized. They buy and/or grow organic.
Yes mrclint, but "organic" doesnt always mean non GMO. IF you grow your food its easier to know what youre getting and since the cali go labeling law didnt pass....
One of the biggest problems gardener's face is keeping enough nitrogen in the soil. Home composting without manure is not going to do it. Why so many commercial operation buy compost is for the nitrogen. I guess one could go the the artificial route but no doubt organic forms which slow release nitrogen, overall produce better crops. It is disturbing to see we have this problem of contaminated compost. At least the industry is becoming educated and I'm sure they will solve these problems, if they wish to stay in business.
Luckily my needs are small so I can afford to buy high end compost. At least on these products all sources are listed. So one can at least know what you are using.
When I need N. from an organic source I use alfalfa cubes purchased from a feed store- that is when I'm not using my own urine. They haven't come up with herbicide resistant alfalfa so it seems unlikely this form of animal feed could be contaminated with anything too bad.
However, I haven't checked on prices for quite a few years. Here in NY it used to be under $10 for a 50 pound bag and contains around 6 or 7% N as I recall.
Slow release N. does not produce better crops of fruit because best results are from N available in early spring. Organic sources insure peak N. just when you don't want it when soil gets real warm in mid-summer (if moisture is adequate)- likely stimulating leaf growth instead of fruit growth, creating excessive shade and pulling calcium from the fruit.
This is why commercial growers often spray the spur leaves with urea shortly after growth begins. There when you need it and gone when you don't.
Long term mulching of fruit trees can also be problematic, IMO, by creating, in some situations, soil with too much organic matter and therefore too much available N during summer.
In the humid regions the ability of organic matter to hold water can also be detrimental to fruit after it reaches a certain threshhold.
For fruit trees it's all about moderate growth once they come into bearing.
I agree harvestman, but fruit trees are only a small part of what I grow. So for me, I need a heavy nitrogen source. Considering my situation with raised beds, and what I'm growing there, compost works best. Not many seed stores around the Detroit area, but if I ever find one I'll look for the
alfalfa cubes! Thanks for the tip! I have been using organic fertilizers and they work well.
Derived from: alfalfa meal, bone meal, blood meal, dried
molasses, poultry manure, soybean meal, corn gluten, kelp meal.
Drew, you should take a look at nitrogen fixing species. Even if they dont do the job completely, so far Ive been noticing a difference between areas with less of them compared to areas with more. The real bonus is many of them work well as ground covers, eliminating bare soil and also making it less likely that weeds will pop up.
I just plant alfalfa and let it do its thing. Its cheaper to get the seeds then processed imo. I have about 10 species of nitrogen fixing plants, the ones I use the most are beans..... delicious beans...
Drew, you can try this site. You can take a trip over the border, or order online, they ship to the states, and incur all fees!