NPK

NPK – What does it mean? Why is it important for your lawn?

Knowing why NPK is important will help you to understand how you are helping your lawn when you fertilise.

For the most part though, if you use a good quality fertiliser suited to your turf, your lawn will thrive.

Lawn Fertilisers come in many varying types and blends. It can be quite confusing as to which is the right option for you. Grass is like any other plant – It takes nutrients and air through the soil and sunlight through the leaves for photosynthesis. This process is where the conversion to sugars and energy takes place. It is the job of lawn fertilisers to keep this in balance and help provide the nutrients your lawn lacks.
The three numbers on the side of your fertiliser represent the value of the three macro-nutrients required for your lawn.

These three macro-nutrients are N, P, & K. 

Let’s break it down…

(N) Nitrogen

Nitrogen is largely responsible for the growth of leaves and is the most talked about nutrient when it comes to lawns. It is usually the highest percentage of your NPK ratio. Nitrogen usually comes in the following forms: Ammonium, Controlled release (synthetic) and Urea.
Lawns love Nitrogen. But, it is important to strike a balance between strong leaf growth and strong roots capable of supporting it. Which is where Phosphorus comes in.

(P) Phosphorus

Phosphorus is largely responsible for root growth and is actually quite a low percentage of the overall NPK ratio. Phosphorus moves slowly through the soil. It isn’t used in great amounts by your lawn, so some is needed but not a great amount.
Phosphorus usually comes in the following forms: Water Soluble, Citrate Soluble and Citrate Insoluble.

(K) Potassium

Potassium is a nutrient that helps the overall functions of the plant perform correctly. Potassium is an essential macro-nutrient used in the largest quantities by plants for vigour and growth. Potassium comes in the form of Sulphate as soluble potash which helps grass withstand drought and disease. It also helps the plant to more efficiently use Nitrogen.

By understanding how these nutrients effect the overall health of your lawn, you will be better equipped to identify deficiencies in your lawn and the tell-tale signs of stress. All of this will help you know when it’s a good time to fertilise.

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For information on caring for your lawn visit our Lawn Care Page.

 

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