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Azomite Mineral Product


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"AZOMITE® is a mined natural mineral product that is an excellent anti-caking agent and a unique re-mineralizer for soils. For over sixty years crop and livestock producers have used this exceptional material to improve livestock and plant growth. Assays reveal that the material contains a broad spectrum of over 70 active minerals and trace elements." www.azomite.com

I've become interested in this product because of reported use in tree care and disease suppression in the US. It has a wide range of uses in agriculture and is OMRI organic certified. I would like to hear from anyone who has direct experience with using it.

It is distributed in Thailand by Behn Meyer Chemical Co. Ltd. www.behnmeyer.com . Their rep will be in Chiang Mai in January and I have asked them to arrange an informational meeting at Dokmai Garden in Hang Dong. If any Chiang Mai gardeners/farmers are interested let me know by PM and I'll advise you when I find out meeting dates. They sent me some photos from field trials in Thailand, Azomite treated vs untreated and it looks pretty impressive.

I don't have any commercial interests in this product or with Behn Meyer, I'm just always interested in learning about and sharing information on good products that can contribute to plant health and productivity. don

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Hello drtreelove, I haven't used azomite but always interested in things that

make things grow better. I went to the BKK web site and looked around the

web some for more info.

I ended up back at: http://www.groworganic.com/

I was trying to find what the $ was, it's around U$30. for 44-Lbs. I also had my

Thai translation hardware call BKK for info and came up with the same bag(20Kg)

was Bt.95, or 10% of the CA cost.

I've put off starting my beans and corn till after new years and will get a few bags

to do my own side by side test. What they say about the corn plant getting bigger

might mean something if your making silage, but does it make the ears get bigger

or have 3 instead of the normal 2 I get?

This if from the PVF site.(http://www.groworganic.com/)

Azomite Micronized (44 lb)

Trace Mineral Amendment This natural fertilizer (described in Secrets of the Soil as

"rock dust") is actually an ancient deposit of aluminum silicate clay and marine

minerals. In use for over 50 years as a source of available potash (0.2%) and over

70 trace minerals, including calcium (1.8%), sodium (0.1%), and magnesium (0.5%).

Apply at 0.25-2 tons/acre, or 0.25-2 lb/10 sq ft. Use as an annual top dressing on

citrus trees, where soil pH is 6.5 or lower, at 5 lb/tree, or 15 lb on blight-stricken

trees. Azomite™ can also used in animal feeds at a rate of 0.5% of feed mixture, as

a trace mineral supplement and a natural anti-caking agent.

rice555

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Hello All, I went to order some azomite today and found that the

price is [email protected], so a bag is Bt.1,900, "not" Bt.95.

rice555

Ouch!!! I didn't know that. That makes it less attractive. It must be imported from the US. I thought that maybe they had tapped into a mine in China and could make it more affordable.

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Hello Dr. Don, I starting looking up things on Azomite and I remembered reading about

"Secrets of the Soil" as "rock dust". Must have been a book or magazine in the 70's from

the Whole Earth Book Store or from a place you know, http://www.commongroundinpaloalto.org/

Using PVF catalog for a rough guide.

Azomite Micronized (44 lb)

Trace Mineral Amendment This natural fertilizer (described in Secrets of the Soil as "rock dust") is actually an ancient deposit of aluminum silicate clay and marine minerals. In use for over 50 years as a source of available potash (0.2%) and over 70 trace minerals, including calcium (1.8%), sodium (0.1%), and magnesium (0.5%).

Apply at 0.25-2 tons/acre, or 0.25-2 lb/10 sq ft. Use as an annual top dressing on citrus trees, where soil pH is 6.5 or lower, at 5 lb/tree, or 15 lb on blight-stricken trees. Azomite™ can also used in animal feeds at a rate of 0.5% of feed mixture, as a trace mineral supplement and a natural anti-caking agent.

What I can't get my head around is some of the claims made, so I wanted to try some. Not just in dirt, but was going to try some in my coir/hydroponics growing(CHEMS).

Would like to hear what you find out at the CM Azomite meeting.

rice555

Don, I was last in SM about 7 years ago, last out of LOS Sep. 05. I did hear things have changed, deadwood city

is now livewood and SM is now dead.

Rereading an online book about a guy that grafted prunes onto almonds. I grew up in an area that his work helped shape. If I'm not mistaken, they named a plum after him. 555

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Hello All, I went to order some azomite today and found that the

price is [email protected], so a bag is Bt.1,900, "not" Bt.95.

rice555

Ouch!!! I didn't know that. That makes it less attractive. It must be imported from the US. I thought that maybe they had tapped into a mine in China and could make it more affordable.

Is diatomite an alternative? It is quarried locally if that is an advantage.

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Hello Boksida, this might explain more what the Azomite is used for, it's between the start

and the end of the article.

Rice555

http://www.soilminer...m/AgricolaI.htm

Rice5s, that's an awesome link; read both parts; should be essential reading for farmers, ag educators and health professionals.

Edited by drtreelove
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Hello Boksida, this might explain more what the Azomite is used for, it's between the start

and the end of the article.

Rice555

http://www.soilminer...m/AgricolaI.htm

Rice555, you get my gratitude and vote for best farming post of the new year for this link. I ordered and read the "Ideal Soil" e-book and am totally impressed. I have used soil testing and prescription amendments for many years in my work, but this book has answered a lot of questions and given me a new perspective and tools to more intellligently use soil analysis, and to know how and why minerals content and balance is such an important component of farming, gardening, plant health and food production. don

Edited by drtreelove
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Hello All, I went to order some azomite today and found that the

price is [email protected], so a bag is Bt.1,900, "not" Bt.95.

rice555

Ouch!!! I didn't know that. That makes it less attractive. It must be imported from the US. I thought that maybe they had tapped into a mine in China and could make it more affordable.

Is diatomite an alternative? It is quarried locally if that is an advantage.

http://www.mineralszone.com/minerals/diatomite.html

diatomite / diatomateous earth is a different thing. a source of sillica and used in pest control and other ways, but not the complex mineral source tha azomite is.

I met with the Behn-Meyer / Azonite rep in Chiang Mai, but I was the only one who could make it. It is interesting and appears to be legitimately beneficial. He was knowledgeable and not a pushy saleman at all, and showed me some photos of trials and results with different crops and application rates. The recommended application rates are 5 - 10 kg per rai for general use and grain crops and 10 - 15 for some root veggies. He also indicated that the 95 baht per kilo was the full retail rate and that lower prices were available, a figure of 80 - 85 baht per kilo was suggested. (I wasn't buying at the time so didn't pin him down) So plug that into your cost benefit analysis.

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Hello drtreelove, thanks for the azomite update, I still going to try some.

The "Ideal Soil" e-book has a way of getting the mind moving forward.

rice555

From the start of "Ideal Soil" By Michael Astera with Agricola

"In order to begin, we need first of all to know what we are starting with, we need to take inventory. This book is a recipe for creating the ideal soil, but that recipe will do no good without knowing what ingredients we have to start with, so that we know what other ingredients may be lacking. The only way to know what we are starting with is to have the soil assayed by a soil testing laboratory. Once that test is in hand, the rest is pretty simple. Without the soil test results, we are floundering in the dark, we are merely guessing. Soil testing is not expensive. There are many soil testing labs around; they have hundreds of thousand of dollars of precision scientific equipment and skilled technicians to operate it, and they are inexpensive and fast. You will need the results of a soil test to use the information in this book."

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hello All, this is a follow up on some of the info from the book: "The Ideal Soil".

I'm not a book salesman, but the book helps with the understanding of getting to that starting

point and going forwards is.

The pix's at the bottom are from the BKK/KU Ag Show last week. The main reason we went was

to get info on SOIL TESTING, here's what you can get, how and the costs. This list covers soil and

water testing, and some plant testing. Where and how to take samples.

The last 2 pix's are some of the other handouts from the KU Soil Dept. about "Soil for Sustaining

Agriculture". #SSA1 is pages 4, 5 and the cover(R/H side). #SSA2 is pages 1, 2, 3.

Some parting clips from TIS.

rice555

"Organic gardening, unfortunately, was stuck back in the 1950s, and it has largely remained there since:

Compost, manure, mulch, and that's about it. The other schools of alternative agriculture - Steiner's

Biodynamics, Permaculture, Elaine Ingham's Soil Food Web concept, the various miracle microbe schools

etc.- all emphasize the biological and compost-based approach almost exclusively. The occasional

mention is made of rock dust, phosphate rock, or dolomite lime, but seldom with any understanding of

the soil chemistry involved".

"Getting back to our critique of today's agriculture: Regardless of their intent, neither the granola heads

nor the nature nazis have proven to have much of a clue when it comes to the big picture. It's time to

change that situation. In order to make a new agriculture, we need to use everything we know or can

find out, from any discipline. Being a believer and purist of any one school or philosophy of agriculture,

and trying to bend reality to fit those accepted truths, is not going to lead us forward.

Most organic growers have no clue what minerals are in their soil. Is it not so? The chemical growers are

generally a little better informed, as they are used to getting their soil tested in order to find out how

many pounds of chemical fertilizer to add, but they have little understanding of the essential role of the

nutrient minerals either".

"The worldwide Organic agriculture movement and its various offshoots have so far only offered

simplistic solutions, mostly one simplistic solution: add more organic matter to the soil. This is the school

from which this book’s authors come, and most growers with whom we work are organic growers. ―More

organic matter‖ is a step in the right direction if the soil is low in humus, but does little to address nutritional

deficiencies, especially mineral deficiencies. Yet it is fiercely defended and proclaimed to be ―the answer‖

for everyone everywhere. Is it? No. While essential, soil biology and organic matter are only a part of what

makes a healthy soil and nutrient dense crops. Nature is not simple, and simplistic one-size-fits-all answers

are not going to solve the nutritional and environmental crises we face".

"What the USA ended up with by the 1970s was a great division between those practicing organic

agriculture and those farming with strong, concentrated chemical fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides.

Neither side talked to the other, the organic group taking the moral high ground against poisoning the

land and the chemical farmers deriding the organic followers as backwards Luddites. Neither side knew

about the successes of those using the methods of Albrecht or Reams. How could they? Organic

Gardening was heavily invested in the idea that organic matter and soil biology alone were the answers,

while the chemical farmers were convinced that the next hybrid crop and the newest pesticide were going

to solve their growing problems. Neither one was interested in learning that they were both wrong, that

there was a system already up and running that didn't require scores of tons of compost and manure per

acre and didn't need toxic rescue chemistry either".

From:

"Ideal Soil" By Michael Astera with Agricola

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post-37242-0-18334600-1297101695_thumb.j

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Hi Rice,

Thanks for the information and your effort on soils.

I am not an environmental purist, as that is simply not realistic in todays society. The answer is made complex by conflict between the needs of the land and the people farming it .

For thousands of years organic byproducts kept the soils in good healthy condition, the human expectation on yield wasnt based on economics as much as it was balance between sufficiency and nature. Now pressure for increased yield means the traditional ways are not sufficient. The easy way has been to use chemical fertilisers alone and we find depleted soils and leeching problems.

I see this issue actually needing two seperate steps. Firstly the soil, get it alive again first. Then look to the needs of the crops to be grown. What is good for the soil will be good for the crop. But I will contest strongly, that what is good for the crop is necessarily good for the soil. Reports I have read indicate that the world's farms have lost half their top soil in less than the last fifty years. That scares me.

I believe that the safest course is to use natural humus building materials, the traditional way. But equally the land is a resource to grow crops and those crops need sufficient nutrient. If only the chemists could develop products that took the needs of the soil, and all the non-plant life it should contain into account. Surely that has to be more possible. After all it was the scientists that developed the commercial EM's, kelp extracts etc... natural products of great value. Yes, the same guys that invented DDT!

I believe you cannot put enough organic material into the soil, but you have to give it time to regenerate. The need for soil analysis is before you plant and then you can look at supplying only those nutrients that the plants need that are not present. Time, that is the sticking point, chemicals are now, right now, but organics take time.

But we could have worms and better moisture retention. We could have less pest and disease issues, both prevented rather than cured. We would have soil that balanced itself in farms as we still have in forests. We could have chemical supplements that improved yield without leaving non-plant-available residues that leech into the ground water.

Wouldn't it be great? I suppose as the Thais say, "Up to you!" I mean a camel is really only a horse designed by a committee!

Isaan Aussie

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  • 5 months later...

Just saw this thread and wanted to comment. Azomite is def good stuff--I've used it for about 3 years now. Behn Meyer sent me a sample (5 kg) bag for free--I paid 0 baht for shipping through Thai Post--and still have about 1/4 of it left after all this time.

I can't remember the name of the guy I talked to at Behn Meyer but he was def a European and suggested the free sample before I even asked about buying any...

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  • 5 months later...

Rice 5's, I PM'd you this but thought others might be interested:

"The Ideal Soil" approach is a revelation; I am grateful for your tip on Michael Astera's work and soilminerals.com. I have run soil tests on several properties and sent to Michael for prescription, then applied amendments accordingly. The full results are a not in yet of course, but I am beginning to see some significant good signs of plant health on the properties that I've treated earlier this year. (Not farm plots but landscapes.) Early results look so much better than the excessive growth and heavy pest pressure that is normally created with conventional high nitrogen NPK fertilization or heavy on manures.

Soil mineralization is being practiced by Dr. Lee Klinger of suddenoaklife.org, in response to "sudden oak death" syndrome, which is epedemic here in northern/central Calfiornia. I have seen some of his results with his "fire mimicry" program and it is impressive.

We processed soil samples from rice fields on two Chiang Mai farms,and sent the mineral prescriptions; there were significant deficiencies found. I'm awaiting word on sourcing of materials and treatment status. CM farmers may be interested in seeing these sample reports as indicative of possible similar soil deficiecies in San Sai and Mae Rim districts. PM me for copy.

Let me know if you need help in processing soil samples from your property; Logan Labs in Ohio is cheap and efficient ($20); all you need to do is to mail the samples with a USDA permit attached (available on Logan Labs website). They email you the results; then send the report to: orders at soil minerals dot com and Michael will provide you with the analysis and prescription via PayPal ($45). Many major and minor mineral amendments are available in Thailand; some trace elements may be hard to find.

Try the minerals approach to complete your soil building, along with your soil fertility/biology program, organic matter building, mulch, green manure, and compost extracts for biology inoculations.

I sincerely believe that this comprehensive approach is superior to any quick fix miracle amendments or organic matter content building alone.

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  • 1 year later...

Rice, I am not sure what you think about Permaculture but I think you got the wrong idea about it. Yes, many who claim to be "Organic" Agriculture are wrong! Since they do not address natural soil building. A lot of folks who call themselves "Organic" promote unrealistic use of compost and manure as the solution, when there simply is not enough manure or compost in the world for every farmer to use such methods. The Permaculture methodology is to use watershed management, and plants/animals to cycle nutrients.

The main problem with modern farming is loss of topsoil and minerals from run-off. Teaching farmers how to minimize run-off should be a priority, instead of quick fix fertilizers. Rock minerals can be a short term solution, if the run-off is eliminated then it could be a long term one. Yes, understanding chemistry is useful, but understanding ecosystems and other natural systems is more useful. Why are the most fertile lands river bottoms or high mineral sediment areas? It is obvious to many people that these types of areas are good for farming, but what is less obvious is how to create such an area by design.

Edited by mo99
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  • 2 months later...

Wow, been a while since this thread was used. I have learnt a lot since I last posted (2 years ago?). I do not accept that there is insufficient natural materials to supply the whole farming community globally. Last year I achieved almost normal rice yield in a drought year and halved my costs. I now make my own fertilisers by supplementing with minerals so this year the rice crop will be fertilised by my farm wastes,my own efforts and a few bags of minerals that cost under 4 baht per KG.

What is the real component that is missing? HARD WORK, you get back what you put in

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Wow, been a while since this thread was used. I have learnt a lot since I last posted (2 years ago?). I do not accept that there is insufficient natural materials to supply the whole farming community globally. Last year I achieved almost normal rice yield in a drought year and halved my costs. I now make my own fertilisers by supplementing with minerals so this year the rice crop will be fertilised by my farm wastes,my own efforts and a few bags of minerals that cost under 4 baht per KG.

What is the real component that is missing? HARD WORK, you get back what you put in

Sounds great! What kind of minerals do you use? Are they mined locally?

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Nothing special, lime, gypsum,dolomite,rock phosphate and potash.Keen to try a Urea substitute I started making from algae.

But most of the goodness comes from the compost itself.

What tickles me is commercial fertilisers are mostly 50% filler which is being sold it 20 baht a kg. Whereas rock phosphate is 70% phosphate and 3 baht a kg.

Where is it mined? No idea.

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Nothing special, lime, gypsum,dolomite,rock phosphate and potash.Keen to try a Urea substitute I started making from algae.

But most of the goodness comes from the compost itself.

What tickles me is commercial fertilisers are mostly 50% filler which is being sold it 20 baht a kg. Whereas rock phosphate is 70% phosphate and 3 baht a kg.

Where is it mined? No idea.

I have tried buying small bags of Bat Guano at the local plant markets, and it seems to be mostly sand. Also very weak, not what I would expect from Guano. I'll save the money and get some more chickens, or buy chicken manuer instead.

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Nothing special, lime, gypsum,dolomite,rock phosphate and potash.Keen to try a Urea substitute I started making from algae.

But most of the goodness comes from the compost itself.

What tickles me is commercial fertilisers are mostly 50% filler which is being sold it 20 baht a kg. Whereas rock phosphate is 70% phosphate and 3 baht a kg.

Where is it mined? No idea.

I have tried buying small bags of Bat Guano at the local plant markets, and it seems to be mostly sand. Also very weak, not what I would expect from Guano. I'll save the money and get some more chickens, or buy chicken manuer instead.

The great unknown with organic products is the life on the shelf. Always better when fresh. I didnt know bats ate sand?

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