Fish fertilizer can be a great way for gardeners to feed and promote health and growth in their gardens quickly and organically. It adds beneficial nutrients to the soil that improves soil health and fertility, which in turn bolsters the growth and health of plants.
These fertilizers are comprised of a comprehensive mix of macronutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, as well as other micronutrients like calcium, magnesium, chlorine, sulfur, and sodium. It’s an all-purpose feeding option that can be used as a soil fertilizing additive, foliar spray, or can be added to your compost pile.
Learn whether fish fertilizer or Alaska fish fertilizer is right for you and how it helps bolster the soil and improve the growth of your garden.
Fish Fertilizer or Alaska Fish Fertilizer: Is There a Difference?
Contrary to what may sell you on a particular fish dish, where the fish comes from or even what type of fish are in a fish fertilizer doesn’t make a difference to plants. Fish have been a natural source of plant nutrients for many years, as it provides rich organic matter that breaks down and releases beneficial nutrients into the soil.
While any fish fertilizer can bolster the health and growth of your plants, there are some differences in how it is processed.
- Non-Hydrolyzed – Fish fertilizer is made from unusable fish parts, including bones, scales, and skin. Rather than discard these unusable fish remnants, they are transformed into essential nutrients and used for gardening. These unusable fish and fish remnants are ground up and processed to remove oils, resulting in the liquid we know as a fish emulsion which is an ideal fertilizer for gardens.
- Hydrolyzed– In this process, the whole fish product is used for fertilizer, which allows even more nutrients to reach your plants. Hydrolyzed fish fertilizers have a very low count of N-P-K, so they will not burn plants and is the best concentration for supporting soil microbes. Often, molasses, kelp, and seaweed are added to these fish fertilizers, which have added benefits for plants and microorganisms.
Granular vs. Liquid Fish Fertilizer
Fish fertilizer can be used on both indoor and outdoor plants and gardens. It can be found in both liquid emulsion forms or as a dry or granular variety. Note that there is a smell to the fertilizer upon application, so indoor use can be a little tricky. Additionally, pets are drawn to the smell of fish fertilizer, so keeping them away is something to watch for.
- Liquid – Liquid fertilizers usually come in a concentrated form that needs to be diluted. It typically has a faster uptake by plants and needs to be repeated every two to three weeks. You can also use it as a foliar spray.
- Dry or Granular – These come in a shakable or spreadable pellet form which you can mix into soil and water in well before planting to jumpstart the microbial life. They can also be added to existing gardens by sprinkling them on the surface of the ground and working them into the top one inch of the soil, and watering in well.
Organic Fish Fertilizer Benefits
The benefits of using fish fertilizer or Alaska fish fertilizer are immense for both your garden soil and the plants that grow in it.
- Fish fertilizer contains fish byproducts or whole fish, which are a great source of plant-available nitrogen.
- It also often contains molasses which is a great source of carbon for beneficial microbial activity in the soil.
- Seaweed and kelp are a great source of plant-available micronutrients.
- Organic fish fertilizers contain beneficial nutrients that must be initially processed by microbes, such as bacteria, earthworms, and mycorrhizae before they are readily available for plant roots.
- Soil microbes that are fed by fish fertilizer improve the strength and robustness of plants by increasing the organic matter in the soil, which results in more aeration, higher nutrient levels, improved soil structure, and a more plentiful microbial presence.
- As fish fertilizer improves soil health, it enhances soil fertility by delivering macronutrients and micronutrients to plants for quick absorption.
- Fish fertilizers provide burn-free nitrogen levels, making them safer to apply to plants directly.
- Unlike artificial fertilizer options, organic fish fertilizers provide micronutrients to plants which boosts plant health considerably, leading to more robust and steady growing plants that are less prone to disease and pests.
- Fish fertilizer is made from fish and fish parts that would otherwise be wasted.
Organic Fish Fertilizer
All plants require a rich, fertile, microbial soil to grow at their best. Fish fertilizer provides plant food benefits along with the lasting effect of improved microbial activity within the soil. Keep fish fertilizer in mind and add it to your garden prep and garden care regimen and be rewarded with a biologically diverse and vigorous garden.