In my previous post,Lawn Soil Test Report, I talked about the results of a soil analysis that I had done on our lawns soil. The resulting report recommends that I apply a fertilizer with a ratio of 3:1:3 where 1 lb of Nitrogen is applied to every 1,000 sq. ft. This is where the confusion starts to set in. The ratio is a ratio of Nitrogen: Phosphorus: Potassium. If you start looking at the bags of fertilizer that are available on the shelf of your local home store you’ll realize where my confusion comes from.
Seeing it’s spring I started looking at the bag of Scotts Turf Builder With PLUS 2 Weed Control (Yellow bag) that is recommended for Spring fertilizing. The ratio listed on that bag is 28:2:3 or 14:1:1.5. Obviously that ratio isn’t close to having the appropriate amount of Potassium in it for my soil conditions. Next I looked at Scott’s Turf Builder with SummerGuard (Orange bag) that is recommended for Summer fertilizing. The ratio listed on that bag is 28:0:8. Again this ratio doesn’t have enough Potassium for my soil.
At this point I was very frustrated so I called the University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension (the folks that did the soil test) and I asked them what kind of fertilizer I should use. The simple answer is you’re not going to find a perfect 3:1:3 ratio. Furthermore, my soil tested in the optimal range for Phosphorous (P) so I could go with any ratio that has a “high:low:high” type of combination.
So when I looked more at the Scott’s brand fertilizers I found that the Scott’s Turf Builder WinterGuard Fall Lawn Fertilizer has a ratio of 22:2:14. This is as close as I can come with Scott’s brand fertilizer to a “high:low:high” ratio. The big problem I think I’m going to have is finding someone that stocks that brand in the spring. With any luck I can find someone that has some left over from last fall.