Best NPK Ratio Fertilizer for Spring Lawns

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Best Fertilizer for Spring Lawns

Do a little Googling and look for .edu websites and extension offices.  What you’ll find is the same answer repeated over and over.  In the absence of a soil test, a fertilizer with a ratio of 3-1-2 or 4-1-2 is the best lawn fertilizer for most lawns both warm season and cool season.  Remember a ratio of 16-4-8 is… a 4-1-2 ratio.  PGF Complete is the best fertilizer for ALL grasses that have entering into their GROWING season. 


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A professional grade 10-10-10 with tiny particles, micro nutrients, and iron. 

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Preventative products should be used in the late summer.  Killing products work best in the spring. The product below can be applied anytime of the year to kill grubs. 


Best Fertilizer N-P-K Ratio

Without a soil test the consensus of most experts is very clear…  a balanced NPK ratio of 4-1-2 is the best fertilizer for all lawns.  Yes, you will hear arguments in many ways, but the experts (and our testing) has shown that this ratio is best overall ration for a regular maintenance fertilizer.

In most cases, a rate of one pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet is suggested for each fertilizer application to the lawn. If high percentage nitrogen fertilizers are used, then less actual fertilizer product is needed to supply that one pound compared to fertilizers with low percent nitrogen. Recommended ratios of N-P-K for lawn fertilizers include 3:1:2 or 4:1:2   → Link to Citation

Good maintenance type fertilizers should be in a 3-1-2 ratio of nitrogen (N) to phosphorus (P) to potassium (K). An example of a 3-1-2 ratio fertilizer would be a 15-5-10 or something relatively close to this.  → Link to Citation

If you have not had a soil test, apply a fertilizer that is four to six parts nitrogen, one part phosphorus and two to four parts potassium. A 16-4-8 fertilizer analysis would fall within this range with a 4-1-2 ratio of these nutrients. → Link to Citation

Use a 3-1-2 or 4-1-2 ratio fertilizer if you elect not to conduct a soil test. A common example of a 3-1-2 ratio fertilizer is 15-5-10,while a good 4-1-2 ratio fertilizer is 16-4-8.These ratios generally supply what most lawns need, and they won’t dramatically increase the phosphorus levels if it’s unneeded → Link to Citation

Best NPK Ratios for Spring Lawns
Article Name
Best NPK Ratios for Spring Lawns
Once our lawns enter into their growing season, the best NPK ratio is a 4-1-2. This is the most recommended ratio by all the extension offices and AG researchers.
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How to with Doc
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3 years ago

WHAT is the best to put down HumiChar or 10-10-10?

Karen Helmbold-Wasileski
Karen Helmbold-Wasileski
3 years ago

My soil test came back low on potassium. The remedy was 15-0-15 now. Why would I put that out when you say its to early for Nitrogen… they sell just potassium why not just that for now
3 years ago

Excellent! Doc is the best!

3 years ago

doesn’t seem to be available this year. I thought it worked on my lawn. If it is not going to be manufactured, what are recommendations for a replacement product(s)?