23 Mar What can NPK do for you?
Fertilizers come in a variety of numbers, such as 10-10-10, 2-14-0, or 20-5-5. These values do not just serve to confuse the public. They represent the NPK values. So, what are NPK values and why should you care?
These values represent the nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium levels. These are macro-nutrients used by plants. You will find these values represented in organic fertilizer as well as chemical varieties. The higher the number the more concentrated the nutrient is in your fertilizer. A value of 0-20-0 means that only phosphorus is in the fertilizer, 10-0-0 would only have nitrogen, etc. Knowing the NPK values will help you select the correct fertilizer for the plant life you are growing and what stage the plant is in. For example, leafy vegetables need a higher nitrogen number to increase growth. New flowers will want a higher phosphorus value to encourage more blooms. Keep in mind that high nitrogen will make for quick growth but weaker plants that are more susceptible to attack by disease and pests. Consider a 5-14-5 for new plantings and switch to a 10-10-10 later in the season.
It is easy to get the right fertilizer your specific plants are craving. The first step is knowing what they want. Doing an evaluation of the plants you have and their needs before you fertilize is key to getting the best results. Soil tests can also help you determine your NPK value balance needed for your beds and gardens. Here at TurfTec we look to our customers soil samples to determine what macro-nutrients need added to your plant and turf fertilizers. That level of attention will get you the best-looking foliage on the block.
For more information check out the link below from Clemson University on the subject