Finding and selecting the right fertiliser for your garden can be challenging, especially if you’re just starting. There are hundreds of different fertilisers out in the world for you to try; however, it’s not as simple as it sounds. Various fertilisers are used for different stages of a plant’s life. Plus, giving your precious plants the wrong Bailey’s fertiliser or power feed in Bunnings is easy, which can quickly destroy the plant’s health.
You may try several different fertilisers before you find the right one, but we don’t want you to waste your time (and hurt your precious plants!) by grinding through all that trial and error – that’s why we’ve compiled this guide to the best fertilisers for all your needs. Wondering what the best fertiliser for blueberries is? How about the best lawn fertiliser in the business? Read on to find out!
What is fertiliser, and why should you use it?
Firstly, all a plant needs to photosynthesise is water, carbon dioxide, and the sun. What is photosynthesis, you might be wondering? This extraordinary chemical reaction transpires within the plant, producing oxygen and glucose. The glucose provides energy for the plant allowing it to grow.
However, plants also benefit from nutrients which is the reason for fertilisation. The chemicals in fertilisers contain all the natural nutrients in the soil and elsewhere, such as the ocean. As such, the ground has everything a plant needs for optimum growth – humans living in a modern industrialised world, however, need to grow things at mass rates to produce enough food for our growing populations – hence the need for fertiliser!
Furthermore, as we have damaged the earth’s soil over time, it has become less fertile. Fertilisers can be a double-edged sword, helping our produce grow whilst hurting the environment. That’s why it’s imperative to select the right one.
Many fertilisers have the lettering – N.P.K on them. This stands for Nitrogen (N), Phosphorous (P), and Potassium (K). These are the three major components of most fertilisers. Other fertilisers have M.A.P. on them. This means mono ammonium phosphate. Map fertiliser is commonly used for seedlings.
There are many different types of fertilisers to choose from, which can be overwhelming. Which kind of fertiliser is best for your needs? Which fertiliser is best for tomatoes? Which fertiliser is easy to use? Let’s explore…
Liquid Fertiliser – These fertilisers come in different forms, synthetic and organic. Of course, we recommend organic fertiliser as it’s better for everything and everyone involved. Liquids also come in soluble-grade dry granules that require water. The liquid form is easy to use, making it ideal for those looking for convenience. However, liquid often isn’t the best choice as it usually contains a great deal of added chemicals as fillers. This is especially apparent in brands like Seasol.
Granular Fertiliser – Granular fertiliser is another convenient choice as it doesn’t require anything extra. This fertiliser is used by simply spreading the grains evenly throughout the area with the help of a fertiliser spreader.
Slow-Release Fertilisers – These are granular fertilisers designed to release active chemicals slowly. The slow, gradual release ensures the lawn or plants don’t get overfed and harmed in the process.
Controlled-Release Fertiliser – Similar to slow-release, these fertilisers slowly release the active chemicals; however, the release is dictated by the temperature and water content of the soil. The intention is to ensure your lawn or plants get the nutrients when they need them most.
The Best Lawn Fertilisers
Seaperia Soluble – Seaperia is made from seaweed, specifically a unique species from Norway called Ascophyllum nodosum seaweed. The harsh conditions that this seaweed grows in cause it to produce much higher quantities of natural growth hormones. This is what makes Seaperia an effective health and growth activator for plants. Further, it’s perfect for the environment. You won’t find this lawn fertiliser in Bunnings; you must order from their website. Seaperia is the best of the seaweed fertilisers we’ve encountered. We’d even go as far to say Seaperia is the best lawn fertiliser in Australia.
Scott’s Lawn Builder – Scott’s Lawn Builder is a concentrated fertiliser with a slow-release time. Many growers have reported Scott’s to be the best slow release lawn fertiliser. The concentration levels in Scotts fertiliser were designed to reduce the need for high volumes, and the slow release of chemicals is intended to mitigate the negative environmental impacts. Further, it’s been reported to be the best lawn fertiliser for Kikuyu grass and an effective buffalo grass fertiliser. A decent choice if you have a small lawn.
Blue Planet Nutrients Liquid Seaweed – Seaweed is probably the best fertiliser you can give to your lawn and plants; and perhaps the best buffalo lawn fertiliser. Seaweed has been proven to boost vitality and stimulate healthy new growth in all varieties of plants, and Blue Planet contains alginic acid, vitamins, auxins, gibberellins, and natural antibiotics. It’s also jam-packed with many major plant nutrients and over 60 trace elements. A great option for liquid fertiliser for lawns; our second best recommendation after Seaperia, due to Seaperia’s high-quality product, environmentally friendly focus and value-for-money benefits.
Miracle Gro – This fertiliser is formulated with phosphate and potassium, which are excellent nutrients for the roots of the lawn. It’s also safe for pets and children. According to customer reviews, using Miracle Gro fertiliser results in positive results within two weeks of use. Although effective, some users have reported negative outcomes such as yellow grass and clumps of fertiliser within the grass. Not high on our recommendations, but probably better than nothing!?
The Best Plant Fertilisers
Seaperia Seaweed Soluble – It provides plant nutrients, minerals, amino acids and growth hormones that boost health, strengthen against disease and pathogens, build roots and encourage exudates. Although Seaperia claims to be a plant health activator rather than a fertiliser, it certainly produces the results. Seaweed in general is magnificent for plant health, but Seaperia does it best with their specialised seaweed from Norway!
Blood and Bone Fertiliser – As the name says, this fertiliser is made from organic blood and bone. These organic nutrients have proven to boost plant health and improve the soil. Additionally, blood and bone contain a natural potash fertiliser for extra colour and flavour. People rant and rave about Blood and Bone, and we agree, it’s fantastic. We would put Blood and Bone second on this list.
Osmocote Plus Organics – This could be the right choice for you if you have roses or anything similar. Osmocote encourages plant growth above and below the ground by combining organic plant food with controlled-release fertiliser. A great option for rose gardens, a great succulent fertiliser and it’s also a good fertiliser for frangipani!
Searles Flourish Soluble Plant Food – Searle’s is an exceptional plant food applied as a liquid feed. It can be used easily through a sprayer by diluting it with water. Flourish provides plants with sufficient nutrients to ensure better growth, flowering and fruiting. Not the best for your fresh patch; however, it does the trick and at the right price!
The Best Fertiliser for Indoor Plants
Green Planet Nutrients – Green Planet is a premium choice for indoor plant lovers. Perhaps the best hydroponic fertiliser out there. It doesn’t contain nasty plant growth regulators or pesticides. Green Planet provides a two-part package that contains everything you need for a luscious garden. Note, this is not us! We’re a separate Green Planet! But we can certainly tell you that these guys are awesome for growing certain “special herbs” 😉
Neptune’s Harvest Organic Hydrolysed Fish & Seaweed Fertiliser – This fertiliser is a natural organic combination of dead fish and seaweed. It sounds disgusting but your plants find it delicious. It contains a perfect combination of NPK, and at low levels, it’s near impossible to burn your plants. This fertiliser isn’t quite at the level of Seaperia, but it definitely comes close!
DIY – Opting to make your own homegrown organic fertiliser is an excellent choice as you can get multiple birds stoned at the same time. For instance, instead of chucking your organic food scraps in the bin they can be better utilised as compost for your soil. Elements such as coffee grounds, eggshells, and banana peels all contain healthy nutrients for the soil. Worm castings, Bunnings worms, bat guano, and certain types of manure are also highly nutritious.
Dyna-Grow Liquid Grow Plant Food – This one is low on our list as it’s a synthetic formula; however, it does provide your indoor plants with a concentrated fertiliser that’s low in Nitrogen. Fertilizers high in nitrogen tend to overstretch the plant’s initial growth. Additionally, it’s high in phosphorus which provides your plants with enhanced flowering. Not bad but last on our list of recommendations.
The Best Fertiliser in Bunnings
We’re going to break this down into the best organic, liquid, slow-release, and specialised fertiliser available in Bunnings.
Best Organic Fertiliser Bunnings
Yates Dynamic Lifter Organic Plant Fertiliser and Soil Improver – If you like to give your garden gentle care, then Yates is a good choice. It releases nutrients slowly making it easy on your greenery. Yates also encourage earthworms and beneficial soil microorganisms. Yates Dynamic Lifter has added Blood and Bone, fishmeal and seaweed that organically enriches and improves the soil. Thrive fertiliser by Yates is another great choice!
Best Liquid Fertiliser Bunnings
Eco-Aminogro Concentrate Liquid Organic Fertiliser – Many Customers noticed that their plants were much more vibrant and lusher when using this. It encourages foliage and works wonders for flowering. For roses, it is excellent combined with Seasol in Bunnings and Eco-Oil.
Best Lawn Fertiliser Bunnings
Yates 15kg Dynamic Lifter Turf Starter – Yates is formulated with the optimum amount of nutrients that are recommended for your grass. Additional micronutrients and trace elements are also added to the composition which ensures a consistent slow release of nutrients over a long period.
If you would prefer an organic fertiliser for your lawn and garden or are looking for a way to improve the organic structure of your soil, then Dynamic Lifter is certainly a good option for a general treatment program.
Best Cow Manure Bunnings
Fine Farms 25L Blended Cow Manure – This is a natural Australian-made product. Fine Farms is great as a general-purpose fertiliser; it assists soil with water retention and soil structure. Fit for use on most greenery including trees, vegetables, flowers, any Bunnings or Big W plants, and garden beds.
When To Use Fertiliser
Fertiliser is best used in moderation as plant life doesn’t need an excessive amount of added feeding. Of course, this differs slightly according to plant type, species, lawn, trees, etc. However, the right fertilisers are excellent staples for your garden supplies.
For optimum lawn care, lawn fertilisation is best done on a bi-annual basis, once during Autumn, and once during spring. This frequency allows for optimum nutrition year around as feeding in the spring will boost growth and feeding in the autumn to protect from winter.
Fertilisation in plants differs according to species but it’s best general practice to postpone any feeding during the early stages of a plant’s life as the roots aren’t mature enough to handle excess chemicals. When the plant has grown enough, usually 2 to 3 months, then you can add fertiliser.
So, which is THE best fertiliser?
Overall, we highly recommend organic fertiliser. Whether it be seaweed, worm castings at Bunnings or a DIY concoction, you cannot go wrong with natural elements as they are good for the plant, good for the earth, and more importantly, good for your health.
With that in mind, we can definitively say that Seaperia is our number one choice given the fact that they’re the absolute Gold Standard for environmental friendliness and eco sustainability, for value for money, and for the fact that they’re an independent business run by the same family since 1974.