Bat guano typically contains 10 percent nitrogen, 3 percent phosphorus and 1 percent potassium. Nitrogen promotes rapid, green growth, making bat guano a useful fertilizer, especially for lawns. Phosphorus promotes root growth and supports flowering, while potassium helps plants grow strong stems. In addition to the presence of these major nutrients in bat guano, it also has micronutrients plants need for healthy growth.
Bat guano fertilizer can benefit the texture of the soil. It helps hold together loose soils and makes dense soils lighter. Guano is not easily leached out of the soil, so it benefits the plants and soil much longer than some inorganic fertilizers which are more readily displaced. Bat guano contains microbes which benefit the soil and plants.
Microbes in bat guano have been reported to have bioremediation capabilities. This means bat guano can aid in cleansing toxic soils. The microbes can also increase water-holding capacity and air space by loosening the soil. Bat guano microbes are also efficient decomposers and help control the incidence of soil diseases and dangerous nematodes. Bat guano can also be added to a compost pile to speed the decomposition process.
Using Bat Guano
When bat guano is harvested, it is in a powdered form. Plants that can benefit from the use of bat guano fertilizer include vegetables, herbs, ornamentals, and fruit and nut trees. The fertilizer can be incorporated directly into the soil or turned into a liquid fertilizer and applied to foliage or dispersed through an irrigation system. When applied to leaves, bat guano fertilizer can ward off fungal diseases.