Based on Wikipedia, Zeolites are microporous, aluminosilicate minerals commonly used as commercial adsorbents and catalysts. The term zeolite was originally coined in 1756 by Swedish mineralogist Axel Fredrik Cronstedt, who observed that upon rapidly heating the material stilbite, it produced large amounts of steam from water that had been adsorbed by the material. Based on this, he called the material zeolite, from the Greek ζέω (zéō), meaning “to boil” and λίθος (líthos), meaning “stone”.
In business and industry term, Zeolite are crystalline hydrated aluminosilicate minerals of alkali and alkaline earth cations. They have infinite, three dimensional structures. Natural zeolites are very good absorbents so they have many particular uses in agriculture, animal farming, human medicine, veterinary medicine, cosmetics, environmental protection, industrial applications etc.
Natural Zeolite for Agriculture and animal farming
Natural Zeolite physical structure and geometry of particles makes it very good natural absorbent. In practical sense it means it absorbs, retains and gradually releases fluids and gases. It is for this reason that it is commonly used in agriculture in maintaining constant levels of nitrogen in the soil when saturated with nitrogen compounds.
Natural Zeolite is also used as farm animal food additive as it shows positive bioactive effects on overall health of animals and on their body weight increase as well as lower mortality rate. Additional advantage of adding natural zeolite to animal feed is reduction of ammonia and odour of animal excrement which ensures better living conditions.
Very often zeolite powder is added in the process of dry composting which results in killing the pathogens, reducing the odour, drying the manure more quickly, reducing insects infestations and it kills weed seeds. The resulting manure is thus produced more quickly and is of higher quality.
Another Natural Zeolite Insight
Another insight based on Zeolife.Gr article, Natural Zeolite is applied by soil incorporation in the amounts of 450 to 600 kg per acre, depending on the soil type and the particle size of the composition (fineness of the material). On heavy soils it is preferred zeolite in the form of gravel (2,5-5 mm), while in light soils is preferred the form of fine gravel (0,8-2,5 mm). The beneficial effect is in long term (zeolite will not disintegrate like other materials) and after the integration of three years completed for conventional crops, the next 10 years you will not have to re-add, and every year you receive the benefit of it. In this way transfer costs are achieved in several years.
Example: for Vineyards: 1 acre with about 400 vine roots: 150kg natural zeolite for three consecutive years. Olive trees: 1 acre Olive trees with about 25 trees: 200 kg zeolite, for three consecutive years or (8 kilos per local tree) Orange trees: 5 zeolite kilos per tree.
Natural Zeolite can also be used in the form of fine zeolite powder for sprinkling with water. Mix 1.5% by weight solution with water. (Eg 200 liters of water used 3 kg zeolite powder for 20 roots trees)
It can also be mixed in a ratio from 15 to 20% relative to the soil and used to seed production and decorative plants.