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Re: Kitty Literite
>From: Dan Q <dqallwet at avana_net>
>Date: Sat, 15 Mar 1997 08:55:10 -0500
>Based on the many comments within this newsgroup, I might suggest that
kitty litter is a >form of laterite. It seems the whole laterite issue is
And that previous statement doesn't help a whole lot. You might as well
say that dirt from your backyard is "a form of laterite."
>One thing that intrigues me about the logic of laterite
>prophets is there belief that it contains a lot of plant nutrition. If
>this is the case, then why are they still using all sorts of fertilizer?
I guess I'm one of the "prophets" and I guess you've not read or misread
everything I've written about it. As a quick summary, laterite *initially*
provides iron needed by the plants and to help nitrifying and other
bacteria get started (they need iron too). After the initial period, the
CEC of laterite binds nutrients that are brought into the substrate via
whatever circulation means you have provided. The nutrients (positive
ions) are held by negative binding sites in the clay lattice until plant
roots can adsorb them. Except for the initial iron, laterite does NOT
provide nutrients but merely acts as a medium for the transfer of nutrients
to the plants. Other clays or substrate amendments can perform the same
function but I personally believe laterite does it in a more sanitary way
by avoiding lots of organics.