How To Make Potash – A Step By Step Guide

Last Updated on March 8, 2022 by Cristina

Potash is derived from the word potassium and it is also referred to as fertilizer potassium.  Potash is a natural element or a natural nutrient for both plants as well as human beings. How to make potash is what we would like to talk about.

This natural element is essential for plants as well as humans to get adequate nutrition to grow properly. Historically, potash has been used to make soap and glass. It has also been used as a drying agent in food and as an animal feed ingredient.

Even though potash is fairly easy to make, it can still require a little effort to know how to go about it.  Now, in this article, we will give you a step-by-step guide on how to make potash, so keep on reading for some insight on this.

But before we look into how to make potash, let’s quickly look into some information on potash.

About Potash
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Potash is also known as potassium salt came from an early production technique whereby potassium was leached from wood ashes. Then the resulting substance was then concentrated by evaporating the leachate in big iron pots (“pot-ash”).

So, in those days, potassium is usually extracted from the ashes of burnt wood. However, this practice is no longer used due to several environmental issues.

The very first patent in the US is potash. It was first patented in 1790 and it still remains an essential product as of today.

Potash is primarily used as an agricultural fertilizer and this is mainly because it is a great source of soluble potassium. This potassium is one of the main plant macronutrients alongside nitrogen and phosphorus (i.e. NPK).

This potash can be used in making soap and textiles softer. Potash can be used as a fertilizer to improve your garden soil nutrient. It can also be used in the prevention of plant diseases or you can use them as an insecticide by applying them to bugs directly.

Sources Where Potash Are Derived From

Since the old way of deriving potash is not safe and unreliable, where then does today’s potash come from? Here are two ways potash is sourced out from:

  1. From Ancient Sea

A time came when an ancient sea dried up. Then the marine salts concentration on the resulting dry land left an abundant residue of minerals and this mineral included potash. This residue is found in the dead sea of Israel and it has produced valuable sources of potash with ICL. They are one of the world’s top producers of potash that sells over 4.5 million tons yearly.

Sources Where Potash Are Derived From
  1. Mining

Another source of potash fertilizer is from mining a variety of geological potassium salt deposits around the world. Now, these are then processed to take out impurities and then converted into a variety of fertilizers.

There is also another mining operation that occurs in Catalonia, Spain through its subsidiary, ICL Iberia Suria and Sallent (IBP).

How To Make Potash: Guide To Follow

Follow this procedure to learn how to make potash:

Step 1: Addition Of Water And Nitrate

Use a measuring cup of 100 milliliters to measure water then use another measuring cup to measure 40mg of nitrate. Then pour it into the cup.

Step 2: Stir Completely

Pour the mixed solution above into a beaker and begin to stir slowly until it mixes completely.

Step 3: Get A Hot Pan To Pour Into

Use filter paper to sieve the solution and ensure there are no insoluble particles left. Then get a saucepan and pour the solution into it (water and nitrate). Then begin to heat it up.

Southern Ag Sulfate of Potash 0-0-50, 5 LB Size: 5 LB

How To Make Potash

Step 4: Potassium Chloride Addition

Get 37gms of potassium chloride and slowly pour it into the saucepan and begin stirring the solution until all is mixed. Make sure you maintain the heat at a medium temperature range and avoid boiling the solution. Then keep on stirring.

Step 5: Filter Then Freeze

After properly mixing the solution, get another filter paper and filter the solution into a freezer-safe container. Again, make sure no solid particles are left out.

Step 6: Crystallization

Once you’ve placed the solution into the freezer, crystallization will begin to form. Then you can take out the container from the freezer once you’ve noticed the total solution has turned completely crystal.

Step 7: Excess Liquid Should Be Drained Out

You should drain out the extra liquid. So, in case you see some liquid residue at the bottom of the container, you should just drain out the extra liquid. This is to further ensure that no liquid is left and all you’ve got is crystal.

Excess Liquid Should Be Drained Out

Step 8: Dry The Crystal

Next, allow the crystal to dry for a while. Then once they are finally dried, the dried crystal can be applied to your plant as a potash fertilizer.

So, there you go. You can see how easy it can be to make potash fertilizer with the right knowledge.

Sources Of Potash From Nature

There are some excellent sources of potash from nature, and they include:

  • Potassium sulfate (K2SO4)- Sulfate of potash
  • Potassium Chloride(KCl)- Muriate of Potash
  • Potassium thiosulfate (K2S2O3)
  • Potassium-magnesium sulphate(K2SO4-2MgSO4)
  • Potassium nitrate (KNO3)

The potash or potassium content present in each of the fertilizers mentioned above is pretty nutritious for plants no matter the source. However, the only difference between each of the fertilizers listed above is only the element that follows the potassium compound.

You should also note that each of the added elements has its own function and acts differently when supplied to crops as fertilizers.

Sources Of Potash From Nature

Final Thoughts On How To Make Potash

Potash is a type of fertilizer that is very useful when added to our garden crops and it can also be referred to as potassium.

Apart from adding them to our plants as fertilizers, there are also other uses for this substance. For instance, it can be used as a drying agent for food, it can be used for making soaps or glass, and you can also use it as an animal feed.

In this article, we have given you a step-by-step guide on how you can make potash. So, we do hope we have been able to enlighten you on the question: how to make potash.

FAQ’s

How to make potash fertilizer?

As of today, potash fertilizer comes from either underground or solution mining. Using mining method, a variety of geological potassium salt deposits around the world is mined to derive potash fertilizer. Then from the bottom of the sea when dried up, the residue minerals left from the dried sea contains also potash.

How to make liquid potash fertilizer?

Banana peels with 3 eggshells should be dried. Then combine them with Epsom salt and grind the mixture into powder form. Add water into the powder. Shake and water your plants with this liquid potash.

How to make potash from wood ashes?

Burn some woods in an enclosed area. An extra tip is not making use of any tree branch as this will leave to become black ashes. Then make sure the woods burn to about 2 hours and you can have your potash.

How to make organic potash fertilizer?

You can make organic potash fertilizer from hardwood ashes, kelp meal, and green-sand. Making a homemade organic potash fertilizer reduces wastage and the best part is that it does not require measuring or mixing ingredients.

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