How to Apply Fertilizer to Your Garden

When most of us think of simple ways to improve our lawn or garden, fertilizer is probably the first thing that comes to mind. Properly applying fertilizer takes planning, preparation, and careful consideration if you want to reap the full benefits of using fertilizer on your lawn and garden.

But you don’t have to be an expert landscaping professional to properly apply fertilizer– just check out these tips from The Parke Company to get your dream garden started today!

How to Fertilize a Garden

Choosing Fertilizer

Choosing the right type of fertilizer can depend on a number of different factors. If you are looking for the most eco-friendly options, you can use recycled materials that you may even have around your house like torn newspaper, cardboard, or compost from food scraps.

If you are looking for something high powered that may yield quicker results for your lawn or garden, there are inorganic fertilizers with nutrients that are readily available to your garden, nourishing them immediately. Some of these fertilizers are also designed to “slow-release” the nutrients to sustain nutrition over time.

Fertilizers can also be dry, water-soluble, and come in a variety of sizes, material-makeup, and prices. Fertilizers will also differ between lawns and gardens. Never use a lawn fertilizer on your garden and vice-versa.

Whatever fertilizer you choose, it is important that you opt for whatever best fits your budget as well as your particular landscape.


Most professionals agree that soil should be tested every two years. By performing these landscaping services, your soil testing report will reveal the nutrients in your soil in addition to the nutrients your soil lacks. This information can also help inform your decision in choosing a particular fertilizer.

When you get to the point of actually applying your fertilizer, there are typically four different methods of application:

1. Broadcast Before Planting

Using this method, the appropriate amount of fertilizer is spread evenly over the garden, mixing with the soil at 3-4 in depth. This method is usually the most ideal for home gardeners.

2. Band/ Row Application

With this method, fertilizer is added in strips alongside the row before planting.

3. Starter Solution

This method is used rarely and should be considered carefully if you believe it is the best for your garden. Typically used for transplants, you can mix 2 tablespoons of garden fertilizer with a gallon of water and pour it into the hole you will plant in, allowing the solution to soak.

4. Application to Growing Plants/ Side Dressing

Particularly in sandy soils or in nutrient-lacking beds, side dressing can help infuse nutrients into your soil.

To use this method, sprinkle fertilizer along the sides of the rows and water into the soil. The amount and timing for this application method will change depending on the types of plants in your garden.

Contact The Parke Company Today!

Applying fertilizer is a lot more than ripping open a bag and dumping it on your lawn. Proper application of fertilizer takes time and patience, in addition to knowledge of your landscape.

For the dedicated gardener, all of this may come easily, but for those who want a beautiful garden without all of the legwork, hiring a landscaping maintenance company for your projects can help give your garden the jump start it needs to bloom.

Whether it is lawn mowing, leaf removal, or more complex projects like hardscape installation, The Parke Company is the right landscaping company for the job. Our experienced professionals are ready to develop a landscaping plan that works for your property and your budget. For residential or commercial landscape maintenance, give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you!

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