If you want a fuller, greener lawn with fewer weeds, the best organic lawn fertilizer can help. These products are made of all-natural ingredients and don’t contain any harmful chemicals but they still deliver amazing results.
There are a lot of great organic fertilizers out there. To choose the right one, it helps to understand how they work and what kind of results you can expect. Let’s take a closer look.
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Why Use Organic Fertilizer On My Lawn?
Organic fertilizer has a lot of benefits for both you and your lawn.
The main benefit of using organic soil is it adds organic matter to the soil and naturally increases nutrient exchange. There are billions of microorganisms in the soil that are a key part of the process and they love to eat organic fertilizer.
When the soil is healthy, it’s able to maintain better moisture levels and attracts a bigger earthworm population. Earthworms are the easiest and most effective way to naturally improve aeration and drainage plus their waste is full of nutrients that plants love.
One of the best reasons to use organic fertilizer is because it lasts a long time. Since organic material takes longer to break down, these fertilizers last for months and remain in the soil even with watering or heavy rain.
These fertilizers release nutrients slowly at a pace that your grass gets everything it needs without being overstimulated. Grass grows slowly and evenly which means you don’t have to mow as often.
Obviously, one of the biggest benefits of using organic fertilizers is they don’t contain harsh, dangerous chemicals. You don’t have to worry about spills and difficult cleanups and you won’t harm your lawn by using too much.
Of course, these products are great for the grass, too. They get all the nutrients they need, fewer deficiencies, and stronger roots. When grass grows stronger, your lawn is less likely to suffer an insect infestation and it’s more difficult for weeds to sprout.
Organic Vs Chemical Lawn Fertilizer – Which Works Better?
Both organic and chemical lawn fertilizers give you results but they’re by no means equal.
Here are some of the differences to keep in mind while when determining what’s best for your lawn.
The most common form of organic fertilizer is pellets. Application is generally pretty easy but can take a while. One big plus is that applying too much organic fertilizer does not harm your plants.
Chemical fertilizer most commonly comes in liquid form. It’s easy to apply but you have to be very careful not to use too much because it can quickly burn your lawn and cause brown spots.
Organic products have all the nutrients your lawn needs but the amount of each can fluctuate. That said, they do contain a lot of the macronutrients that your soil also needs.
While chemical fertilizers have precise amounts of essential nutrients, macronutrients are lacking. There’s also a danger that nutrients can build up in the soil over time and run-off when watering or during heavy rain.
Nutrients are released slowly with an organic fertilizer at a rate that plants can absorb effectively. Because of this, it requires fewer applications and won’t lead to overgrowth.
Synthetic fertilizers provide a quick burst of nutrients and generally offer a short term solution.
Grass grows quickly and needs to be mowed more frequently. Since the nutrients are released quickly, more frequent applications are needed.
There’s no question that organic fertilizer is better for soil. It gives the natural microorganisms and bacteria the food they need to help create a well-balanced ecosystem ideal for plant growth.
Chemical fertilizers don’t do anything beneficial for the soil. In fact, they can actually decrease fertility in the long run.
The Best Organic Fertilizers For Your Lawn Grass
Now that you know a little more about organic fertilizers, let’s take a close look at some of the best products available for your lawn.
|Pictures||Organic Lawn Fertilizer||Fertilizer Analysis||Links|
|The Andersons Innova Organic Fertilizer||7-1-2||Buy on Amazon|
|Safer Brand Ringer Lawn Fertilizer||10-0-6||Buy on Amazon|
|Espoma EOLB30 Organic Lawn Booster Fertilizer||8-0-0||Buy on Amazon|
|Milorganite 0636 Organic Nitrogen Fertilizer||6-4-0||Buy on Amazon|
|Dr. Earth Super Natural Lawn Fertilizer||9-0-5||Buy on Amazon|
|Scotts Natural Lawn Food||11-2-2||Buy on Amazon|
|Purely Organic Lawn Food||10-0-2||Buy on Amazon|
|Wiggle Worm Castings Organic Fertilizer||1-0-0||Buy on Amazon|
|Superior Nitrogen & Potash Lawn Food Natural Liquid Fertilizer||15-0-15||Buy on Amazon|
|Natural Alternative Early Spring Fertilizer||21-0-4||Buy on Amazon|
Organic Lawn Fertilizer Reviewed
1. The Andersons Innova Organic Fertilizer
This organic fertilizer from the Andersons is completely plant-derived and contains no biosolids, composted waste, manure, or animal parts.
It’s a soybean-based formula that gives your plants all the vitamins and nutrients they need, including nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorous.
Innova Fertilizer also contains a high amount of amino acids and an extended nitrogen release source that stimulates healthy soil and supplying fuel to beneficial microbes. The 6:1 carbon to nitrogen ratio creates a perfect balance for these microbes and fertile soil for your grass.
One of the great things about this product is it’s safe and easy to apply. The low-dust, homogenous granules are easy to apply using conventional methods. It’s safe around children and pets as well as environmentally-sensitive well, ponds, and other waterways.
This 40-pound bag goes a long way. To maintain your yard, you need anywhere from 3.5 to 11 pounds of Innova per 1,000 square feet. For new lawns, use 20 pounds per 1,000 square feet to prep the seedbed for effective growth.
2. Safer Brand Ringer Lawn Fertilizer
Safer Brand is another great organic option that uses plant-based nutrients. There’s no poultry litter, bio-solids, or manures and, best of all, no odor. This product works really quickly. IN fact, you can see results in as little as three to five days.
This is a great choice if you have an established lawn that’s struggling. The lawn restores formula is designed to work fast, ensuring the proper balance of nutrients in your soil to feed the bacteria and fungi living in your soil that produce the nutrients your lawn needs to thrive.
You can use this fertilizer on warm and cool-season grasses including Kentucky Bluegrass, Perennial Ryegrass, and Bermuda Grass. It can even help prevent the spread of weeds by strengthening your grass and giving weed less chance to grow.
This 25-pound bag covers 5,000 square feet and should be applied roughly every eight weeks using a handheld spreader or pushcart. For best results, do an application in the spring, one mid-summer, and another in the fall.
3. Espoma EOLB30 Organic Lawn Booster Fertilizer
Espome Spring Lawn Booster is made from feather meal, pasteurized poultry manure, and gypsum and is an affordable, chemical-free organic fertilizer that’s specially formulated to optimize the health of your lawn.
One of the great things about this formula is it has 2.5 times more slow-release nitrogen than other fertilizers. This helps foster more uniform growth.
A 30-pound bag covers up to 5,000 feet and is safe around pets and kids. It’s designed to be applied in the spring and works best when your lawn has been freshly mowed and it can more easily penetrate the soil.
This fertilizer works best with a drop or broadcast spreader. It should be watered slightly if no rain is forecast in the next 24 hours to help saturate the soil for best results.
4. Milorganite 0636 Organic Nitrogen Fertilizer
This organic fertilizer from Milorganite is a slow-release formula that’s not only good for your lawn. It prom the healthy growth of trees, shrubs, and flowers, too. It uses non-burning, slow-release nitrogen that works for up to 10 weeks.
There are a few benefits to using this slow-release formula. Not only can you wait longer between applications but it can also reduce mowing and conserve water. This formula is so effective, it’s been around for 90 years and has been used by golf courses for decades.
You can cover 2,500 square feet with this 36-pound bag. Just apply the granules evenly during the growing season to encourage lush, strong growth. Plus, because this formula has 4% water-soluble iron, your grass will grow greener than before.
One more thing, this formula doesn’t contain salts so it’s safe to use in dry conditions when water restraints are in place and it won’t contaminate groundwater or wells.
5. Dr. Earth Super Natural Lawn Fertilizer
Next up is this organic fertilizer from Dr. Earth, a superior blend of fishmeal, fishbone meal, potassium sulfate, alfalfa meal, seaweed extract, and more. Not only is this a great choice for your lawn but it’s also ideal for many garden projects including planting trees and shrubs.
One thing that this fertilizer does that makes it so effective is controlling thatch. Thatch is a layer of debris that’s produced by grassroots. It sits between the vegetation and the soil. When it’s removed, fertilizer can penetrate deeper to help build a hardy root system for your lawn.
Another cool thing is it contains three different mycorrhizae stains and a range of beneficial soil microbes. These organisms help make sure the fertilizer gets into the soil effectively and at an optimal, steady rate.
Dr. Earth greatly enhances the quality of your soil and delivers results quickly. That’s not all, one application lasts for up to three months so you don’t have to reapply too often.
6. Scotts Natural Lawn Food
Scotts is a well-known brand when it comes to fertilizers and their natural lawn food is a great way to get a thick, green lawn without the use of harsh chemicals. You can apply it during any season to any grass type and the end result is a thicker, natural lawn.
Use a pushcart for fast and even application. Watering isn’t required but you should water before allowing activity on the law, especially if there’s a dry spell and no rain is predicted in the coming days.
After application, you don’t have to wait to use your lawn again. It’s safe to walk on again immediately and you can even let your kids and pets play on it without worry. For best results, reapply every six weeks.
Scotts also offers a No-Quibble guarantee. If you’re not happy for any reason, you’re entitled to your money back. All you have to do is send them a receipt and they’ll mail you a refund check as soon as possible.
7. Purely Organic Lawn Food
Next up is this Lawn Food from Purely Organic. This brand has been used by professional sports venues for years to keep their grass fields green and lush. Now, you can get the same look at home right in your own backyard.
If you prefer organic products, something else you might really appreciate about this fertilizer is that it’s sustainable. Rather than allowing food waste to sit in landfills, Purely Organic refines and blends it to create all-natural fertilizer that’s effective and affordable.
It works by nourishing your lawn from the inside out to make more nutrients available to your lawn. You can use it as often as you want and because it encourages thick, healthy growth, your yard is also less likely to be invaded by weeds.
This 25-pound bag covers up to 5,000 square feet. Application is quick and easy and there are no restrictions for when you can enter the lawn again after application. There’s no manure so there’s no unpleasant odor plus it’s convenient and family-friendly.
8. Wiggle Worm Castings Organic Fertilizer
One of the most unique fertilizers on our list is this one from Wiggle. Why? Because it made out of pure earthworm castings. Not only is this a great choice for your lawn, but it’s also great for houseplants, vegetables, and flowers, too.
The nightcrawlers used to produce this fertilizer are fed organic material that’s rich in minerals and trace elements. After the earthworms ingest and pass this material, the result is an extremely fertile fertilizer that’s loaded with nutrients plants need for strong roots and fast growth.
This fertilizer works quickly because the earthworms have already processed the materials so they’re easier for plants to use. That’s not all, this mix also has what your plants need for long-term nutrition so you won’t have to reapply too often to get long-term results.
9. Superior Nitrogen & Potash Lawn Food Natural Liquid Fertilizer
For anyone who prefers liquid fertilizer, this product from Simple Lawn Solutions is a great choice. It’s ideal for regular maintenance but works very well with lawns that show a deficiency of nitrogen and potassium.
Key ingredients in this formula include nitrogen and potassium blended with humic/fulvic acid. This combination intensifies growth and color while providing necessary nutrients for healthy, strong growth.
This formula can be used with all grass types including Bermuda, Zoysia, Palmetto, and Bluegrass. This 32-ounce bottle treats up to 3200 square and is applied using a simple garden hose attached right to the bottle.
Since there are no harsh chemicals, this product won’t stress or burn your lawn. It works well with sandy soils and can improve resistance to extreme temperatures, too. This product is safe for kids and pets and is made and manufactured in the USA.
10. Natural Alternative Early Spring Fertilizer
Finally, we recommend this fertilizer from Natural Alternative. It’s a phosphorus-free formula that’s all-natural and organic-based.
This product feeds your lawn slowly and steadily with rich microbes and other ingredients that feed the soil to produce a strong, lush lawn.
This 20-pound container covers over 6,000 square feet and because it doesn’t contain any phosphorus, it’s a safe option for around lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water.
Application is simple, use a calibrated spreader to make sure you’re applying evenly. For established lawns, use three pounds per 1,000 square feet. If applying to a newly seeded lawn, make sure you rake the fertilizer into the soil before seeding.
What is the Best Organic Lawn Fertilizer You Can Buy?
Our pick for the best organic lawn fertilizer is The Andersons Innova Organic Fertilizer. This fertilizer is a completely plant-derived, soybean-based formula that includes nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorous.
This formula uses a 6:1 carbon to nitrogen ratio that creates an ideal environment for the beneficial microbes living in the soil. There is also a high amount of amino acids and extended nitrogen release for long-term benefits.
Application is really simple. The low-dust granules are safe for kids and pets and are safe for applications around wells, ponds, and other waterways. A 40-pound bag goes a long way and can be used on established lawns or new growth.
Types of Organic Lawn Fertilizers
There are generally three different types of organic lawn fertilizer. Each has a different makeup and adds different nutrients and minerals to the soil. The three types are:
Plant-based. Plant-based fertilizers don’t last as long as other organic options but they’re generally the best way to condition the soil. One of the major benefits of a plant-based fertilizer is they can be very effective at helping dry soils hold onto water.
Plant-based fertilizers often use bases of alfalfa meal, compost, cottonseed meal, legumes, and molasses.
Animal-based. These fertilizers include things like bone meal, blood meal, and manure. They add a lot of nitrogen to the soil and are great for the beginning of planting season or when you first seed your lawn.
Mineral based. An example of organic mineral-based fertilizer is calcium or Epsom salts which can add necessary nutrients to the soil while also changing the pH.
Sometimes, this is necessary for optimal growth and a mineral-based organic fertilizer is a great way to achieve it.
When to Apply Organic Lawn Fertilizer?
The important thing to remember about organic fertilizers is that most of them have nutrients that cannot be directly used by plants. Their primary function is to feed the microorganisms in the soil to make it suitable for growth.
Because of this, there’s a lag between when you apply the fertilizer and when you see the biggest benefits from it. It’s a good idea to do an application a few weeks before planting. You can even do one at the end of fall to make sure the soil is ready for next year.
You should also take into consideration how wet the environment is. Most microorganisms need a warm, moist environment to release nutrients, so plants may need to wait a little longer to see the benefits.
Pay close attention to the weather. Sometimes, it’s necessary to change your schedule application if the weather is unseasonably cold in spring because it slows down the whole process.
If you notice that your grass looks like it needs fertilizer and you’re waiting for the effects to kick in, try a quick-acting fertilizer applied to the leaves. Leaves absorb nutrients directly so this is a good way to get your grass through a difficult spell while waiting for the fertilizer in the soil to be effective.
It’s important to note that fast-acting fertilizer should only be used as a quick fix. There should be enough nutrients in the soil to sustain your lawn throughout the year once the microorganisms get to work from the original application.
How Often to Use Organic Fertilizer Lawn?
There’s a lot to consider when applying an organic fertilizer to your lawn. How often you apply it is one factor but it’s also really important to make sure you’re applying it properly. It’s a good idea to have your soil analyzed so that you know exactly what it needs.
Soil tests usually provide a fertilizer recommendation that’s expressed as a series of three numbers. These numbers give you an idea of how much nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium you need to add to your soil and help you choose the right fertilizer.
The fertilizer you choose will have specific instructions for application. For granules, use a handheld spreader or pushcart to cover the area. Some types work better if watered into the soil while others should be worked into the surface with a rake. Follow the package directions for the best results.
Liquid fertilizers are a little easier to apply, just attach them to your garden hose and apply evenly to your lawn or use a handheld sprayer or backpack sprayer. These fertilizers generally work by giving additional nutrients through the leaves or blades of grass and eventually make their way into the soil.
There is a much lower chance of causing damage to organic fertilizer than when using chemical fertilizer because they’re just not as harsh. That said, every organic fertilizer is different so be sure to read the package instructions carefully.
So, how often should you apply organic fertilizer? It depends on where you live and what type of grass you have.
Although there a lot of different varieties of grass, there are two main types: cool-season and warm-season. Cool-season grasses typically grow in the north where temperatures get a bit colder while warm-season grasses grow in the south.
There are also transitional climates, too, where either type of grass can grow.
Cool-season grasses stay green year-round in areas with cold winters and warm summers. These grasses should be fertilized once in early fall, once in late fall, and again in the spring. This gives the fertilizer enough time to work before spring and sustains it throughout the summer.
Warm-season grasses grow best in warm climates and can go dormant in the winter, turning brown. These grasses require a different approach. Do an application in early spring when the grass begins to turn green, another in late spring, and a third in late summer.
Because warm-weather grasses go dormant in the winter, you don’t need to worry about a fall application.
Using the top-rated organic lawn fertilizer can do wonders for your lawn. Remember, these fertilizers work differently than chemical fertilizers and have a lot of benefits. They require fewer applications and work to make your soil fertile for longer periods of time.
It’s best to have your soil analyzed before choosing a fertilizer but our top pick is The Andersons Innova Organic Fertilizer. It’s completely plant-based and has nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus to bring your soil to life.
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