Reading the Fertilizer Bag
El inglés es el idioma de control de esta página. En la medida en que haya algún conflicto entre la traducción al inglés y la traducción, el inglés prevalece.
Al hacer clic en el enlace de traducción se activa un servicio de traducción gratuito para convertir la página al español. Al igual que con cualquier traducción por Internet, la conversión no es sensible al contexto y puede que no traduzca el texto en su significado original. NC State Extension no garantiza la exactitud del texto traducido. Por favor, tenga en cuenta que algunas aplicaciones y/o servicios pueden no funcionar como se espera cuando se traducen.
English is the controlling language of this page. To the extent there is any conflict between the English text and the translation, English controls.
Clicking on the translation link activates a free translation service to convert the page to Spanish. As with any Internet translation, the conversion is not context-sensitive and may not translate the text to its original meaning. NC State Extension does not guarantee the accuracy of the translated text. Please note that some applications and/or services may not function as expected when translated.Collapse ▲
When you buy a bag of fertilizer, do you ever wonder exactly what’s in it? It’s really very easy to know what is contained in that bag if you know how to read the code. The code is the 3 numbers on the front of the bag such as 10-10-10. These numbers can be different but they all mean the same thing. Each number represents the percentage of the 3 major nutrients contained in that bag. The numbers are always in the same order, nitrogen is first, phosphorous is in the middle and potassium is last. This means that a 50 pound bag of 10-10-10 has about 16 pounds of nitrogen, 16 pounds of phosphorous and 16 pounds of potassium in the bag.
What do these nutrients do? Well, nitrogen is for top growth and makes the plant nice and green. Phosphorous helps with flowering and also insures healthy roots. Potassium promotes the general health of the plant and helps with disease resistance. Some fertilizers also contain micro-nutrients such as iron. The numbers tell you what crop that fertilizer is best suited for. If you’re sowing a new lawn, the first and second numbers should be high to help the grass germinate and grow roots quickly. Fertilizers such as 10-10-10 and 17-17-17 are for general purpose uses. High phosphorous fertilizers are often applied around rhododendrons to help them set blooms for next year.
It is always best to use these nutrients in a balanced fertilizer blend. In other words don’t go out and just put phosphorous on your lawn. That can get things out of whack. You can also choose quick release or slow release fertilizers. The quick release feeds all at once but the slow release feeds the area for a period of three to four months. Either is fine to use but obviously the slow release fertilizer has a more lasting effect.
Fall is the best time to fertilize the lawn. Trees and shrubs should not be fertilized at this time. Follow the application rate on the bag and your lawn will be ready to go next spring. If you need help choosing the best fertilizer for your needs, give the Extension office a call at 764-9480.