Types of Fertilizers

Article Posted By: Home Depot Staff

Fertilizers are used to feed your lawn and keep it healthy and beautiful. When you walk into the Garden Center at your local Home Depot store, you’ll see fertilizers grouped into a few different categories.

These categories are

  • synthetic
  • organic
  • water-soluble
  • granular

Most synthetic fertilizers come in granular form, and they come in different time-release formulations. These time-release formulas will give you much more control over how much and how often you feed your lawn.

A quick-release fertilizer is an ammonia-based fertilizer. The nutrients are utilized quickly for a rapid response in growth and color of your lawn. The drawback of these formulas is the potential for leeching of nutrients. A slow-release fertilizer is urea-based and is treated with sulfur or polymer coated nitrogen granules. The soil breaks these granules down more slowly to feed your lawn over a longer period of time. Fewer nutrients are lost through leeching this way, and it is less likely to burn your grass.

Organic fertilizers naturally grow a thick, green lawn. This would include compost that you make yourself, or you can purchase pre-made organic fertilizer. These pre-made organic fertilizers usually comprise grains like ground corn, alfalfa, cottonseed, or soy as well as blood meal and feather meal.

The primary advantage of organic fertilizer is their slow-release formula. Releasing nitrogen and other elements slowly keeps a yard from burning and the nutrients from leeching.

When shopping for fertilizer, remember that you can reduce the cost of fertilizing by determining how much you will need to buy for the season and purchasing the largest package available. In a larger package, fertilizer usually costs less per pound.

Learn more about fertilizer and how to choose the right one for your lawn or garden with our Fertilizer Buying Guide.

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