The Best Organic Lawn Fertilizers (Including Organic Care Guide)

Best Organic Lawn Fertilizers

Organic lawn fertilizers contain only eco-friendly ingredients to give grass essential nutrients. The best fertilizers for organic lawns should contain only natural sources of nitrogen—the necessary nutrient for healthy green grass growth. Organic grass fertilizers help grow lush, green lawns as they improve soil quality and strengthen turfgrass roots.

Many of the best-selling organic grass fertilizers contain plant-based nutrients without any animal products. This type of natural lawn feed means that grass is safe for children and pets to play on. Also, using only all-natural lawn fertilizers causes less pollution in the environment and creates a sustainable, organic garden.

Choosing the best organic lawn fertilizer can be challenging. To help determine the right type of grass feed, it’s vital to understand how fertilizers work. You also need to know how often to apply organic fertilizers to grow beautiful, healthy, emerald-green lawns.

In this guide to using organic grass fertilizers, you’ll find out the pros and cons of using all-natural products. You will also learn about the top natural lawn care products currently on the market.

The Advantages of Using Organic Fertilizers on Your Lawn

The main advantage of using organic lawn fertilizers is that they add microbes and microorganisms to the soil without harsh chemicals. Other benefits of pure organic lawn food are that it increases soil fertility, improves soil structure, and releases nutrients slowly. Organic lawn products are also pet and children-friendly.

Organic fertilizers for lawns are the best type of “food” to improve soil health. Soil rich in organic matter encourages earthworms and retains moisture. This provides the best eco-friendly environment for robust turfgrass root systems to develop. The result is lush grass that is resistant to weeds, pests, and diseases.

You’ll also find that turfgrass that “feeds” on all-natural products is easier to maintain. For example, plant-based fertilizers don’t overstimulate plant growth. Grass grows at a natural pace and requires mowing less often.

One of the main advantages of organic lawn fertilizers is their low impact on the environment. Adopting organic gardening techniques eliminates harsh, synthetic chemicals that can pollute soil, rivers, and plants. You also don’t have to worry about any pets or children being on the grass after you have applied a natural grass feed.

The Differences Between Chemical and Organic Lawn Fertilizer

Organic lawn fertilizers use natural organisms containing high levels of nitrogen, potassium, and other micro-nutrients. Chemical lawn fertilizers contain inorganic materials, and synthetic processes produce the nutrients. Organic fertilizers were once living organisms—plant or animal—so, using them in gardening put the nutrients back in the ground.

The primary nutrients in all types of fertilizers—organic and synthetic—are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). Depending on what the fertilizer is used for, these three nutrients are in varying ratios. For healthy, green, vibrant grass growth, the two vital nutrients are nitrogen and potassium.

Researchers from the University of Illinois say that most organic grass fertilizers are from animal or plant sources. Common sources of plant-based fertilizers are seaweed (kelp), alfalfa, and cottonseed meal. When it comes to organic lawn fertilizers from animal sources, bone meal, poultry manure, or feather meal are all excellent sources of nutrients. (1)

According to research, chemical fertilizers are usually the result of the petroleum industry. Synthetic fertilizers may produce results faster than organic natural fertilizers, but they contribute to environmental pollution. These types of fertilizers often kill off beneficial microorganisms in the soil, leading to poor soil and plant quality. (2)

Is Organic Lawn Fertilizer Better Than Synthetic?

Organically-sourced lawn fertilizers benefit both the grass and the soil. Natural fertilizers stimulate microorganisms in the ground, improving soil structure. Unlike synthetic fertilizers that give a short, sharp growth spurt, organic fertilizers are gentler and feed turfgrass roots more effectively. The results of organic fertilizers last longer than synthetic ones.

Compared to synthetic chemical fertilizers, organic lawn fertilizers have the following benefits:

  • Ease of use—You don’t have to worry about over-applying organic fertilizer to your lawn or worrying about spills.
  • Nutrients—All nutrients are natural and don’t cause a harmful buildup of mineral salts in turfgrass soil.
  • Micro-nutrients—As well as containing the three primary nutrients (NPK), organic fertilizers—unlike synthetic ones—also include many more nutrients that plants need.
  • Rate of nutrient release—The nutrients in organic fertilizers break down slowly in the soil, feeding plants as they need them. The slow nutrient release also means fewer fertilizer applications.
  • Impact on soil—Organic lawn fertilizers promote a healthy ecosystem in the soil and increases fertility.
  • Safety—All-natural fertilizers are safer for lawns as they don’t burn roots. Also, organic grass fertilizers don’t pose a risk for humans or pets when applied to grass.
  • Environmentally-friendly—There is minimal runoff or leaching into nearby water sources.

Types of Organic Lawn Fertilizer

The two types of organic lawn fertilizers are plant-based grass feed and animal-sourced ones. Many kinds of animal-based fertilizers come from chicken manure, bone meal, or blood meal—but they can be smelly. High-quality organic plant fertilizers are made from plant extracts or seaweed and are generally odor-free.

All types of organic lawn fertilizers should have a higher nitrogen ratio to potassium and phosphorus. In fact, it’s not uncommon for organic lawn fertilizers to have no phosphorus at all.

According to the University of Illinois, the recommended N-P-K ratios for lawn feed are 3-1-2 or 4-1-2. Nitrogen ensures lush, green grass growth, and potassium promotes overall grass health and vigor. (1)

For example, a good-quality plant-based grass fertilizer could be 18-0-3. This fertilizer would be 18 percent nitrogen and 3 percent potassium with no phosphorous.

The Best Organic Lawn Fertilizers

 Organic Lawn Fertilizer
Espoma Organic All Season Lawn Food
The Andersons Innova Organic Lawn Fertilizer
Natural Liquid Fertilizer for Grass - High Nitrogen Lawn Food
Safer Brand Organic Lawn Fertilizer
Milorganite Organic Nitrogen Fertilizer
Organic Liquid Seaweed and Kelp Fertilizer for Lawns and Plants
Purely Organic Lawn Food
Green Envy Lawn Turf Superfood

The 8 Best Organic Lawn Fertilizers Reviews

What are the best natural lawn fertilizers to help organic turfgrass thrive and develop resistance to pests, disease, and drought? Here are some of the best organic lawn fertilizers on the market:

1. Espoma Organic All Season Lawn Food


Espoma organic lawn fertilizer is a high-nitrogen, all-natural product for healthy lawn growth. The granular lawn feed has an N-P-K ratio of 18-0-3 to help grass grow fast and green. This nitrogen content is derived from feather meal and poultry manure. This slow-release natural fertilizer creates healthy lawns and soil.

In addition to natural nitrogen sources, the fertilizer contains a bio-tone formula. These beneficial microbes promote strong roots and a healthy growth environment.

2. The Andersons Innova Organic Lawn Fertilizer


The Andersons slow-release grass fertilizer only contains plant-based organic ingredients. The fertilizer is USDA certified for organic gardening. The benefits of this organic lawn food are that it doesn’t contain biosolids, manure, animal parts, or composted waste products. It is an N-P-K balance of 7-1-2.

This plant-based, organic fertilizer is safe around kids and pets. You can apply the fertilizer and water your lawn without risk to human, animal, or plant life. Because it only contains plant extracts, there are no foul odors.

3. Natural Liquid Fertilizer for Grass – High Nitrogen Lawn Food


This natural liquid lawn fertilizer is high in nitrogen and potassium for vigorous grass growth and healthy roots. The liquid fertilizer concentrate is easy to apply to maintain your lawn’s natural health. There are only natural and organic ingredients in the fertilizer, which has an N-P-K balance of 16-4-8.

All you have to do is attach a hose to the liquid fertilizer container to apply the right amount. You can use this high nitrogen lawn food for any type of lawn grass.

4. Safer Brand Ringer Lawn Restore, Lawn Fertilizer


This plant-based, natural lawn fertilizer has high nitrogen, medium potassium, and no phosphorous. The plant extracts help improve the soil’s structure and provide essential nutrients for vibrant grass growth. This fertilizer is free from poultry products or biosolids and doesn’t have any bad odor. The N-P-K analysis is 10-0-6.

Microorganisms in the fertilizer also help your soil to thrive. You can safely apply this fertilizer to turfgrass without any worry of risk to children or pets. The plant-based lawn feed ensures that there is no plant burn from mineral salts. Suitable for all grass types.

5. Milorganite 0636 Organic Nitrogen Fertilizer


This slow-release natural fertilizer provides all the nitrogen that a thriving lawn requires. The non-burning fertilizer is suitable for most grass types where you need chemical-free lawn care. Milorganite nitrogen fertilizer uses microbes to produce nitrogen and phosphorus content.

Apart from using this organic fertilizer on lawns, you can use it to boost the growth of shrubs, trees, and other plants in an organic garden.

6. Organic Liquid Seaweed and Kelp Fertilizer for Lawns and Plants


Seaweed and kelp are fantastic sources of natural nitrogen to boost the health of your turfgrass. Made from organic sea plants, this all-natural lawn fertilizer strengthens grass growth from root to blade. The liquid fertilizer formula is rich in amino acids, enzymes, minerals, and macro-nutrients to ensure vibrant lawn growth.

This natural, organic fertilizer is also excellent for fertilizing houseplants, vegetables, trees, and shrubs. Using this liquid kelp fertilizer, you can safely grow healthy, organic plants without the use of synthetic fertilizers or chemicals.

7. Purely Organic Lawn Food


Get emerald-green grass and healthy soil by using this organic, plant-based lawn fertilizer. There is no stinky manure, biosolids, or harsh chemicals in this natural grass food. The N-P-K rating is 10-0-2, so there’s plenty of nitrogen to encourage natural grass growth. The nitrogen content is from distiller’s grains and soy.

This chemical-free fertilizer formula doesn’t risk burning your soil due to over-application.

8. Green Envy Lawn Turf Superfood


This top-quality liquid grass feed contains organic ingredients to meet the nutritional needs of all types of lawns. This product is different from other types of organic fertilizers because it contains beneficial bacteria to boost the natural nitrogen content of the soil. The presence of beneficial bacteria promotes good soil health.

You can use this organic grass food with other organic fertilizers to boost their effectiveness. Use to enhance soil, grow healthy lush grass, and build natural resistance to disease.

What is the Best Organic Lawn Fertilizer?

The best fertilizer for growing organic lawns should have a high nitrogen content. Most homeowners prefer plant-based organic lawn feed because it has less odor. Whatever type of natural fertilizer you choose for your organic lawn care, it should only contain natural ingredients. So, read the ingredients carefully.

When Should You Apply Organic Fertilizer on Your Lawn?

Caring for lawns using organic products only requires fertilizing a few times a year. Use organic lawn fertilizer three times a year—in late May, then in early July, and finally in early fall. Applying natural lawn feed at these three times helps ensure that your lawn is well-nourished.

It is good to remember that organic lawn care is a long-term process. So, results may not be immediately apparent after applying organic fertilizers. Many all-natural plant feeds work best in warm, moist environments. So, if you’ve had a cold spring, you could use the organic feed when the weather warms.

How to Use Natural Organic Lawn Fertilizer

Use natural organic lawn fertilizer to ensure you have a lush, vibrant green lawn. The easiest type of fertilizer to use on lawns is the granule type, rather than liquid spray lawn fertilizers. It’s best to use a spreader to get even coverage to use organic fertilizer granules.

It can be challenging to apply lawn fertilizer by hand. Although organic feeds don’t cause plant burn as synthetic fertilizers do, hand application can result in uneven fertilization. Similarly, spraying liquid fertilizers for grass requires precision to avoid applying more fertilizer to one part of the lawn than the other.

To use natural organic grass fertilizers on your lawn, this is what you should do:

  • Fill the spreader with a high-quality organic fertilizer that has an N-P-K ratio to suit your lawn’s needs.
  • Set the spreader appropriately to distribute the amount of fertilizer you want to apply.
  • Starting at the edges of your lawn, move at walking speed back and forth in straight lines. Always make sure there is an overlap when at the edge of the previous line of spread.
  • When you finish, thoroughly water your lawn to allow the nutrients to soak down into the turfgrass roots.

Using Organic Weed and Feed as Part of Natural Lawn Care

When it comes to organic weed and feed, you will need to combine 2 separate products: organic fertilizer and organic weed preventer. Organic weed preventer for your lawn contains corn gluten meal that works by preventing weed seeds from rooting after germination.

Organic weed preventer is not an herbicide. So, if you already have unwanted plants growing in your lawn, you will need to remove them naturally using one of these homemade natural weed killers.

Apply organic weed and feed products twice a year to stop dandelions, crabgrass, foxtail, and other lawn weeds from appearing.

One example of an organic weed preventer is Espoma CGP6 Organic Weed Preventer which prevents new emerging weeds.

The time to use weed and feed products is before weeds have germinated. Early spring is the best time to apply organic weed applications. As part of organic care for your yard, you should follow the following principles to reduce weeds:

  • Mow your grass so that it’s about around 3” long (7.5) before applying weed and feed.
  • Wait for two days and then apply the weed and feed to dry grass.
  • Follow the manufacturer instructions on how to apply the organic weed and feed.

You can use other organic lawn care methods that will improve the lawn health and reduce the amount of unwanted lawn weed.

Some of the aspects of organic lawn care include:

  • Only water lawns when the top few inches are dry, and always water it thoroughly. Remember that the roots of weeds are shallower than grass roots. So, allowing the top layer of soil to dry and then giving your lawn infrequent, but thorough watering is a natural weed-prevention tip for organic lawns. Ideally, you should wait until the top 6” (15 cm) of turf is dry before watering.
  • Only use high-quality, organic lawn fertilizers to feed your lawn.
  • Test the pH level of the soil every two or three years to make sure it’s around 6.5. Keeping turf slightly acidic creates the best growing environment for grass. Also, weeds tend to thrive in soil that has a pH of 7.5.
  • Aerate the lawn. Aeration helps to remove thatch, improve drainage, and give the roots more oxygen to “breathe.”

Related: Organic Lawn Care – How to Maintain Your Lawn Naturally

How Often to Apply Organic Fertilizer on Your Lawn

Apply organic fertilizers on lawns two or three times a year during the growing season. Because organic grass feed improves the soil structure, quality, and health, you don’t need to fertilize often. Use organic fertilizers when the weather becomes warmer in spring, then in early summer, and later in early fall to keep lawn grass thriving.

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