how to choose best fertilizer for your lawn

How to Choose the Best Fertilizer for Your Lawn?

Having a beautiful lush lawn is a sign that you take care of your property and are doing things rightly. But, what does it take to achieve a beautiful lush lawn? The secret lies in figuring out what lawn fertilizer is best for your lawn and the best time for its application.

For lawns to reach their full potential in terms of beauty and performance, they need balanced, well-timed nutrition to fuel proper growth. So, whether you’re a first-time lawn owner or a longtime backyard pro, you can select the best lawn fertilizer for your lawn and achieve your set goals for a beautiful and lush lawn.

Lawn grasses need nutrients to sustain growth and beauty. Plants need three essentials nutrients– nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.  These are needed in larger quantities than other plant nutrients. Nitrogen is the main nutrient behind rapid, green, leafy growth. Lawn grasses need more nitrogen fertilizer than any other plant nutrient.

Nutrients, including phosphorus and potassium, are available in sufficient amounts in healthy lawns. These two primary nutrients stay relatively inactive until used. Nitrogen moves through the soil with rain or irrigation water. The high rate of nitrogen use and movement in the soil means it has to be replaced regularly to satisfy nutrient needs and keep grass healthy and green.

Understanding Fertilizer Nutrients:

Fertilizer is made majorly from three nutrients. They include:


Nitrogen is a protein present in every plant. It helps to spur the lawn growth process. Not only that, but it also can help plants fight off damaging pests. This is one of the main things that promote the lush green color in your lawns.


Phosphorous gives plants the ability to convert nutrients into growth-agents. It also helps to foster a robust root. If you have a very new patch of lawn and want to encourage growth, using a fertilizer with high phosphorous content, can help you do that. On the other hand, if you have a lawn that has been around for a while, then the best fertilizer likely will have much less.


Potassium helps in enhancing the overall growth of plants, it keeps them healthy and well balanced. In addition, it helps plants develop resistance to unfavorable weather conditions.

These three nutrients together are known as N-P-K, named after the initials of their atomic names.  N – for nitrogen, P – phosphorus and K – potassium. The levels of N-P-K will be listed on the bag or bottle of fertilizer, in the order of nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium content. The numbers indicate the percentage of each element per kilogram of fertilizer. For example, a fertilizer listed with an N-P-K of 15-15-15 has 15% nitrogen, 15% phosphorus, and 15% potassium per kilogram.

Natural fertilizers have a lower percentage of N-P-K content than synthetic fertilizers, meaning you will have to use more natural fertilizer to get similar results as synthetic fertilizers. Natural fertilizers often contain extra nutrients beneficial to the health of your lawn. Natural fertilizers also are less likely to cause burns on lawns than synthetic fertilizers.


Types of Lawn Fertilizer:

There are three different types of lawn fertilizers: granular, organic and water-soluble. Granular styles of fertilizer are available in time-release formulas which allows you to control when your lawn will be fed. Organic fertilizers are natural and can be produced at home. Composts, are also examples of this fertilizer. The break down process takes time and then slowly release nutrients into the soil which in turn feeds the lawn. Water-soluble fertilizers are quick-release fertilizers which imply that the benefits are visible almost immediately. They are also ammonium-based to help grass truly absorb the solution.

When picking fertilizer, you should consider things like how you want to apply it, how often you want to apply it, how much your lawn needs, how available you are to take care of your lawn. This can help you make the best decision for your specific operation. If you know you will be around through the spring/summer to watch your lawn, then water-soluble fertilizers will work best for you. On the other hand, if you are to leave town for a few weeks during summer, then time-release granules may be the best option for your lawn.

Fertilizers can also include pests repelling agents and eliminate weeds. You also can find fertilizers that promote quick-growth. So what suits your lawn and apply appropriately.


Best Lawn Fertilizer Reviews:

Scotts Tuff Builder Lawn Food

This lawn fertilizer has an NPK ratio of 26-0-3. This means that it doesn’t contain phosphorous, so it’s best for already established lawns. This fertilizer can work in any geographic area.

The Scotts Tuff Builder helps make your lawn “bulk up” and thicken. It also helps in eliminating weeds. Because it is high in nitrogen,  it can strengthen your lawn so you wouldn’t be worried during cold weather or drought. It can also help in boosting your lawn’s rate of water and nutrient absorption, enabling you see quick results in your lawn

For quick-acting, strengthening and weed-suppressing fertilizer for your lawn, this is a great option.

  • Helps to “bulk up” and thicken lawns
  • Helps in fighting off weeds
  • Boost water and nutrient absorption rates in lawns
  • Limited to existing grasses due to the absence of phosphorous



Not recommended for lawns that may be left dormant for a while. As it will lead to excessive growth before maintenance is carried out

Miracle-Gro Lawn Food

This is lawn fertilizer also can function for different lawns. It has an NPK ratio of 36-0-6. Making it an effective option for a mature lawn that needs to thicken up.

It will also help in promoting lush and beautiful lawns because of its high protein content. It is specially formulated for turfgrass that has chelated iron and high nitrogen. The manufacturers state that you can get visible results within a few days and its NPK content is to thank for that.

It is water-soluble which gives it the ability to be easily absorbed into the root and the stalk of your lawn.

  • Effective in individual blades strengthening
  • Iron content helps in promoting greener lawns
  • Acts very fast
  • Burns lawn when it’s not mixed precisely
  • Also burns when not applied before rain
  • Contains high amount of pollutant

Extreme Grass Growth Lawn Booster : Our Pick

This is a good option for new and young lawns. Its NPK content  is 20-4-8, which means the phosphorous content helps in encouraging rooting. The nitrogen and potassium will help to promote strength and pest resistance in your lawn.

Although it is concentrated, it is still pet and kids friendly. This is a great option for families, because it is safe and all-natural.

  • Its a good option for new lawns
  • It’s fulvic and humic acid-content forms the building-blocks for new grasses
  • It gives quick visible results
  • Easy to use
  • Doesn’t work for all grasses
  • The sprayer breaks easily



Milorganite 0636 Organic Nitrogen Fertilizer

This is a top-rated organic fertilizer selection for lawns. It is safe for families with children and pets. It is effective for building up lawn strength. It has an NPK ratio of 5-2-0. Meaning it doesn’t have potassium. As a result of this, it’s best for areas with moderate temperatures and no danger of droughts.

Another wonderful attribute of this fertilizer is that it has a 4-percent iron content that promotes the much desired lush greenery for your lawn.

Milorganite can be easily applied all year round.

  • Safe for use for families with children and pets
  • It’s iron contents helps in promoting lush greenery
  • Flexible
  • Can be applied all year round
  • Can cause burn if not applied prior to rain as it needs plenty of water to dilute
  • Not as effective when sprayed on food plants