At Kiwi Fertiliser, our founding principle is to change NZ agriculture for the better, by prioritising soil health and fertility. When the soil is healthy, the microbial life flourishes. Everything ends up in equilibrium, and there are countless benefits for your farm.
Our highly experienced consultants will come to your farm and help your get your soils in balance, using highly specific testing and custom blended fertiliser mixes. Read all about the service we offer here.
The three phases of Soil
This refers to the minerals, including nutrients, that make up the soil. This aspect of the soil is measured using soil analysis techniques. Soil tests often do not give total nutrient levels but attempt to give relative concentrations that reflect plant availability. Changes in the chemistry of soils affects:
- Soil biology, organism populations and diversity.
- Soil structure. Soils with adequate calcium are the best structured soils.
Refers to the structure of the soils; hardness, friable nature, porosity. Changing the physical aspect of the soil affects:
- Nutrient weathering and nutrient availability.
- The biology of the soil. Tight compacted soils may not accommodate large soil organisms like worms and insects.
The biology of the soils is one of the hardest aspects of the soil to measure and interpret. The simplest and most manageable way is by observation; the rate at which dung breaks down, stubble degrades and the number of worm casts. Changing the biological aspect of the soil affects:
- Nutrient weathering and nutrient availability. Soil organisms are involved in the decomposition of soil minerals and organic residues into soil and plant nutrients.
- The structure of the soil by the decomposition of organic residues. Organic cements are produced which help glue soil particle together. Plant roots increase soil aggregate stability.
The philosophy behind the Albrecht-Kinsey system is to “use the chemical (fertiliser) to change the physical (soil structure) to provide the environment for the microbes”. The right microbial environment translates directly to high production and superior stock/vine/tree health. These three phases of the soil are interdependent. You cannot change one without affecting the others.
40 Facts about Fertiliser and Soils
Get your head around these 40 or so facts and you’re already well ahead of the game when it comes to understanding soil health and correct fertiliser use.
Read about the 17 most important nutrients for soil health, and what can happen when they are out of balance.