The 7 Best Fertilizers for Bermuda Grass in 2024

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Bermuda grass thrives with proper nourishment, and selecting the best fertilizer is key to a lush, green lawn. This article delves into top fertilizer choices for Bermuda grass, providing expert insights on nutrient needs, application timing, and product types to ensure your turf remains robust and healthy.

Whether you’re a seasoned landscaper or a homeowner seeking the best for your lawn, our guidance will help you cultivate a vibrant Bermuda grass that’s the envy of the neighborhood.

The Key Info:
  • Bermuda grass requires a balanced NPK ratio, with fertilizers like 16-4-8 or 15-5-10 being ideal to provide the necessary nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.
  • The best time to fertilize Bermuda grass is during its active growing season, which is generally from late spring to early fall, avoiding application during dormancy.
  • Soil testing is recommended to determine specific nutrient needs and to avoid over-fertilizing or under-fertilizing, which can harm the lawn and the environment.
  • A variety of fertilizers are suitable for Bermuda grass, including liquid and granular types, organic and synthetic options, and slow-release versus quick-release formulations.
  • Proper aftercare following fertilizer application is important, including watering and waiting to mow, to ensure the grass absorbs the nutrients effectively.

The Best Fertilizers For Bermuda Grass

man spreading fertilizer on bermuda grass

Bermuda grass is a warm-season turf known for thriving in hot and sunny climates. It’s a popular choice for lawns, golf courses, and sports fields due to its durability, drought-tolerance, and fast growth. To keep your Bermuda grass healthy and green, you need to apply the right fertilizer at the right time.

For Bermuda grass, a balanced NPK ratio is crucial. Look for fertilizers with a 3-1-2 or 15-5-10 ratio, which supplies the grass with the ideal levels of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Nitrogen promotes fast growth and vibrant green color, phosphorus supports strong root systems, and potassium helps the grass resist stress and disease.

When applying fertilizer, keep in mind that timing is essential. Avoid using nitrogen-based fertilizers during January through April, due to the risk of frost. It’s best to fertilize Bermuda grass once there’s little chance of frost and when the grass is actively growing.

Granular fertilizers are easy to apply with a spreader, while liquid fertilizers can quickly cover large areas using a hose-end sprayer. Whichever type you choose, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the best results.

By taking the time to choose the right fertilizer and applying it properly, you’re setting your Bermuda grass up for success. A healthy, green lawn is achievable with a bit of diligence and the right fertilizer choice. Remember to care for your Bermuda grass effectively to ensure it remains vibrant and strong.

Simple Lawn Solutions Advanced 16-4-8

A gallon of simple lawn solutions.

Simple Lawn Solutions Advanced 16-4-8 is a fantastic option for your Bermuda grass lawn, providing a balanced mix of essential nutrients. This liquid fertilizer contains 16% nitrogen, 4% phosphorus, and 8% potassium, which are crucial for maintaining your lawn’s health and vitality. Moreover, the added seaweed extract and humic acid improve soil health and plant growth, giving you an all-around solution for your lawn care needs.

Application is a breeze with this liquid fertilizer, as it’s easily used with a hose-end sprayer. You can cover up to 16,000 square feet of lawn with just one container, giving you plenty of coverage for your Bermuda grass. Keep your lawn looking its best by using the Advanced 16-4-8 every 4 to 6 weeks during the growing season. This will enhance the color, density, and strength of your lawn, making it the envy of the neighborhood.

Safety is crucial when it comes to lawn care products, and that’s where Simple Lawn Solutions Advanced 16-4-8 shines. Made from natural and organic ingredients, this fertilizer is manufactured in the USA and is safe for both kids and pets. You can have peace of mind knowing that you’re providing a high-quality solution for your Bermuda grass while also being kind to the environment.


The Andersons PGF Complete Fertilizer with Humic DG 16-4-8

A bag of fertilizer for a lawn.

When looking for a high-quality fertilizer for your Bermuda grass, The Andersons PGF Complete Fertilizer with Humic DG is an excellent choice. This granular fertilizer has a balanced formulation of 16% nitrogen, 4% phosphorus, and 8% potassium, along with iron, sulfur, and other micronutrients to provide a comprehensive lawn care solution.

One of the key ingredients in this fertilizer is humic acid, a natural soil conditioner. Humic acid helps improve your soil’s water retention, nutrient availability, and microbial activity, all of which contribute to the overall health of your Bermuda grass.

The small particle size of The Andersons PGF Complete Fertilizer makes it easy to spread and ensures quick dissolution into the soil. This means your Bermuda grass can quickly benefit from the nutrients provided.

During the growing season, you can apply this fertilizer every 6 to 8 weeks. This will help boost the growth, color, and health of your Bermuda grass, keeping it looking lush and vibrant.

Not only is The Andersons PGF Complete Fertilizer suitable for Bermuda grass, but it’s also beneficial for other grass types and soils, making it a versatile solution.


Safer Brand Lawn Restore Natural Fertilizer 9-0-2

A bag of safer lawn restore.

This plant-based fertilizer is composed of 9% nitrogen, 0% phosphorus, and 2% potassium, making it a balanced choice for your lawn. So, how does it benefit your grass?

First of all, it’s made from environmentally friendly ingredients such as soybean meal, feather meal, and sulfate of potash. That means no synthetic chemicals or animal by-products are found in this product—just what your Bermuda grass needs to thrive!

Another advantage of using this fertilizer is the beneficial bacteria present in its composition. These bacteria work hard to break down organic matter and release essential nutrients into the soil. As a result, your Bermuda grass will have improved resistance against drought, heat, and pests.

To get the most out of Safer Brand Lawn Restore Natural Fertilizer, it’s recommended to apply every 6 to 8 weeks during the growing season. Your lawn will feel revitalized, and you’ll begin to notice a difference in the appearance and health of your Bermuda grass.


Milorganite Slow-Release Nitrogen Fertilizer 6-4-0

Milorganite lawn fertilizer bag.

If you’re looking for an effective, eco-friendly fertilizer for your Bermuda grass, then you should definitely consider Milorganite Slow-Release Nitrogen Fertilizer 6-4-0. This organic fertilizer is loaded with 6% nitrogen, 4% phosphorus, and 0% potassium, along with iron for a deeper green color. What sets it apart from other fertilizers? Well, it’s made from heat-dried microbes that digest organic waste materials, like sewage sludge.

The slow-release nature of this fertilizer ensures that your Bermuda grass is gradually fed over several weeks, without any leaching or runoff. You can apply it every 8 to 10 weeks during the growing season, to stimulate root growth, enhance turf density, and even reduce weed pressure. Pretty impressive, right?


Scotts Turf Builder Pro 32-0-4

Scott's turf builder pro lawn food.

This synthetic fertilizer has a unique composition of 32% nitrogen, 0% phosphorus, and 4% potassium, paired with a patented formula called Water Smart Plus.

What does Water Smart Plus do for your lawn, you ask? It helps your Bermuda grass absorb water and nutrients more efficiently. No more worrying about the wasted resources, as this smart formula gets the best out of your lawn care regimen.

One of the great advantages of using Scotts Turf Builder 32-0-4 is the built-in weed preventer. Weeds can be a real pain to deal with, especially the notorious crabgrass. But when you go for this fertilizer, it stops crabgrass and other weeds from germinating for up to four months. That’s less time spent battling weeds and more time admiring your stunning lawn.

Application is only required every 6 to 8 weeks during the growing season to keep your Bermuda grass in tip-top shape. This product has got your back, keeping your lawn thick and vibrant with minimal effort on your part.


Lesco 24-2-11

A bag of lesco professional turf fertilizer.

Lesco 24-2-11 is a great synthetic fertilizer option. With a blend of 24% nitrogen, 2% phosphorus, and 11% potassium, plus iron, this fertilizer helps Bermuda grass get the nutrients it needs for a richer, greener appearance.

One of the benefits of Lesco 24-2-11 is that it contains slow-release nitrogen, which provides your lawn with a steady supply of nutrients for up to eight weeks. This means you can enjoy a healthier, more vibrant lawn without the need for constant reapplication.

During the growing season, you’ll want to apply Lesco 24-2-11 every two months to ensure your Bermuda grass remains adequately nourished. This consistent care will contribute to improved grass performance and a stronger, more attractive lawn.


Sunday Lawn Care

A green hose and a bottle of water on the grass.

Sunday Lawn Care is a subscription-based service that has got you covered. This service delivers customized liquid fertilizer and soil amendments right to your doorstep, tailored to your lawn’s needs and local climate.

Using a blend of natural and organic ingredients like molasses, seaweed, and iron, Sunday Lawn Care helps feed your Bermuda grass and enhance its overall beauty. When you subscribe, you’ll receive a free soil test kit and a personalized lawn care plan that guides you on when and how to apply the products. This ensures your grass gets the nutrients it requires for optimal growth.

Applying Sunday Lawn Care every 3 to 4 weeks during the growing season can transform your lawn from a mere patch of grass into a vibrant oasis. Not only is the service easy and convenient, but it’s also eco-friendly and safe for both pets and kids. So you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that your lawn is taken care of without harming the environment or your loved ones.

So, by choosing Sunday Lawn Care, you’re choosing a straightforward, eco-friendly, and hassle-free solution to keeping your Bermuda grass in tip-top shape. And in the process, you’ll create a lush and vibrant lawn that you can feel proud of.


Choosing a Lawn Fertilizer For Bermuda Grass

different types of granular fertilizers

Before selecting a fertilizer for your Bermuda grass, it’s essential to know what makes a specific type of fertilizer most effective for your lawn. Here are some tips to help you make the best choice.

Nutrients – NPK

When it comes to maintaining a healthy and lush Bermuda grass lawn, three essential nutrients come into play: nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. These nutrients are represented by the N-P-K ratio on fertilizer labels. Let’s take a closer look at each nutrient’s role in your lawn.

Nitrogen is the key player in promoting leaf growth, color, and density. Bermuda grass thrives with a higher nitrogen intake compared to other grasses, especially during the peak growing season from spring to fall. As a guideline, apply 1 pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet of lawn each month to boost its vigor.

Phosphorus aids in root development, seed germination, and flowering. However, your Bermuda grass doesn’t necessarily need large amounts of phosphorus unless the soil is deficient, or you’re dealing with a newly established lawn. It’s vital to avoid using too much phosphorus, as it can lead to environmental issues like algae blooms in waterways. To determine your soil’s phosphorus levels, consider performing a soil test to see if any adjustments are needed.

Lastly, potassium plays a significant role in stress tolerance, disease resistance, and water regulation. Moderate amounts of potassium are necessary for Bermuda grass to withstand droughts, heat, cold, and heavy foot traffic. Just like phosphorus, a soil test can guide you in determining if your lawn requires any additional potassium.

By ensuring the right balance of these three nutrients, you can provide your Bermuda grass with the optimal conditions to maintain its health and lush appearance throughout the year.

Soil Test

A soil test is a great way to understand the nutrient levels, pH, and organic matter content of your soil. By conducting one, you’ll be better equipped to choose the best fertilizer for your Bermuda grass and prevent issues like over-fertilizing or under-fertilizing your lawn. Pretty helpful, right?

To get started, you can easily procure a soil test kit from your local extension office or online. Just follow the instructions to collect a soil sample and send it off to a laboratory for analysis. In return, you’ll receive a report detailing your soil’s nutrient levels, pH, and organic matter content. But that’s not all! The report will also include recommendations on the type and amount of fertilizer to apply, as well as the optimal timing for it.

We suggest performing a soil test every two to three years, as this will allow you to monitor changes in your soil and adjust your fertilization strategy accordingly. This regular testing will ensure your Bermuda grass remains healthy and vibrant. 

Micronutrients

Your Bermuda grass needs micronutrients, just like humans need vitamins and minerals. Some of the essential micronutrients for Bermuda grass include iron, sulfur, magnesium, manganese, zinc, copper, boron, molybdenum, and chlorine. Don’t worry! These elements are typically present in most soils in small amounts.

However, sometimes your Bermuda grass might not get enough micronutrients which can lead to deficiencies. Factors like high or low pH levels, poor drainage, and excessive fertilization can make these micronutrients unavailable to your plants. So, how can you find out if your soil has sufficient micronutrients? A soil test is the answer! It will help you identify any micronutrient deficiencies or imbalances, and then you can take appropriate action.

Type of Fertilizer

When it comes to maintaining a lush and healthy Bermuda grass lawn, it’s essential to know which types of fertilizers suit your needs best. Let’s explore the different types of fertilizers and their benefits for your Bermuda grass.

Organic vs Synthetic

Organic fertilizers are derived from natural sources like plant or animal materials. These fertilizers are often slow-release, which means they provide a steady supply of nutrients over time. This can be beneficial for your Bermuda grass, as it allows for more consistent growth. Moreover, organic fertilizers enhance the soil structure, water retention, and microbial activity, leading to a healthier lawn overall.

On the other hand, synthetic fertilizers are manufactured using chemical compounds. As they are usually fast-release, they provide a quick boost of nutrients right when your grass needs it. This can make them particularly effective if you’re looking to rapidly improve your lawn’s appearance. Additionally, synthetic fertilizers typically have a higher concentration of nutrients per unit weight compared to organic options.

Liquid vs Granular

liquid and granular fertilizer

Liquid fertilizers are dissolved in water and sprayed onto your lawn. They’re easy to apply, and you get the benefit of uniform coverage of nutrients across your entire lawn. Plus, liquid fertilizers act quickly, as they can be absorbed by the grass through both the leaves and roots. This means you’ll likely see results faster when using liquid fertilizers.

Granular fertilizers are solid particles that you spread on your lawn using a spreader. This type of fertilizer is generally more economical and lasts longer than liquid fertilizers. One of the key benefits of granular fertilizers is their slow-release nature, allowing the nutrients to be released gradually and controlled by the amount and frequency of application.

If you’re looking for fast results and an easy application process, liquid fertilizers may be the way to go. However, if you’re more budget-conscious and prefer a slow-release approach, granular fertilizers might be a better fit for your lawn.

Slow Release vs Quick Release Fertilizer

Slow-release fertilizers are designed to gradually release nutrients over a period of weeks or months. What’s great about these fertilizers is that they reduce the risk of burning or leaching, providing a consistent supply of nutrients to keep your Bermuda grass healthy and vibrant. Moreover, fewer applications are needed, which can save you time and money in the long run.

Quick-release fertilizers rapidly release nutrients within a few days. If your Bermuda grass is showing signs of nutrient deficiencies or stress symptoms, this type of fertilizer can provide a swift solution. Additionally, quick-release fertilizers can enhance the color and growth of your lawn, making it look picture-perfect in no time.

Weed and Feed

yates weed and feed review

Weed and feed fertilizers are a combination of fertilizer and herbicide, which can make them a convenient option for caring for your Bermuda grass. However, there are some reasons why they might not be the best choice for your lawn.

Applying weed and feed products at the wrong time or at an incorrect rate can damage your lawn. To avoid harming your Bermuda grass, you should be attentive to the instructions on the product label and follow them accordingly. Remember that doing a separate, targeted application for fertilizer and herbicide might be a better solution to ensure proper timing and avoid potential harm.

Another concern with weed and feed products is that they can negatively impact the beneficial microorganisms and insects in your lawn’s soil. These little helpers are crucial for maintaining a healthy ecosystem, and by using weed and feed fertilizers, you might inadvertently disrupt this delicate balance.

It’s also important to consider the environmental impact of weed and feed fertilizers. When used irresponsibly, these products can contaminate water sources and harm local wildlife. To minimize your lawn’s environmental footprint, you can aim to use more eco-friendly options, such as organic fertilizers like Sunday Lawn Care and targeted herbicides.

How To Fertilize Bermuda Grass

drop spreader fertilizing a lawn

So, you’ve chosen the perfect fertilizer for your Bermuda grass lawn, and now it’s time to apply it the right way to achieve the best results. Read on for some helpful tips to make the process a breeze.

When To Fertilize

The ideal time is when your lawn is actively growing, which usually occurs from spring to fall in warmer climates. During these months, your Bermuda grass will benefit the most from nutrients and care.

A common question I get is, “Should I fertilize when my lawn is dormant?” The answer is no. Generally, Bermuda grass becomes dormant during the colder months, typically from late fall to early spring. Fertilizing during dormancy can result in wasted nutrients and even damage your grass.

Always follow the instructions on the fertilizer label for best results. This will provide guidelines for the frequency and rate of application.

As a rule of thumb, applying 1 pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet of lawn per month during the growing season should suffice. However, this could vary depending on the specific type and quality of the fertilizer you’re using.

Be mindful of the weather when planning to fertilize your lawn. Avoid applying fertilizer before heavy rain or during a drought, as this can lead to nutrient loss or even damage your beloved Bermuda grass.

How To Apply

If you are using a granular fertilizer, you’ll need to choose a fertilizer spreader that is calibrated and adjusted based on the fertilizer label. When spreading the fertilizer, ensure an even distribution by following a crisscross pattern across your lawn. This way, your Bermuda grass will happily soak up all the nutrients it needs to flourish.

Are you using a liquid fertilizer? No worries! Bust out a hose-end sprayer and attach it to your garden hose. This nifty tool will allow you to spray the fertilizer evenly according to the instructions found on the product label, ensuring a healthy and well-nourished lawn.

But what if you’re going down the organic path? Good on you! After spreading the organic fertilizer on your lawn, simply rake or water it into the soil. This helps break down the fertilizer faster and releases crucial nutrients into the soil for your Bermuda grass to enjoy.

It’s always wise to wear gloves, goggles, and a mask when handling any fertilizer to protect your skin, eyes, and lungs from any accidental exposure.

Aftercare

Taking care of your Bermuda grass after fertilizing is crucial for its overall health and appearance. Make sure to water your lawn deeply soon after fertilizing. This helps dissolve the fertilizer and allows it to penetrate into the soil more effectively, providing your grass with the essential nutrients it needs.

Hold off on mowing your lawn for at least 24 hours after applying fertilizer. This gives the grass blades time to absorb the nutrients without the risk of removing them prematurely. A well-timed mowing schedule can make all the difference in achieving a lush and healthy Bermuda grass lawn.

As you monitor your lawn’s progress, keep an eye out for any signs of over-fertilization or under-fertilization. These could include yellowing, browning, wilting, or stunted growth. When you spot any issues, don’t hesitate to reassess your fertilization schedule or rate – your lawn will thank you for it!

Maintaining records of your lawn’s fertilization history is a smart move. Jot down details like the date, type and amount of fertilizer, along with any notable results from each application. By doing this, you’ll have a clearer understanding of your lawn’s performance, allowing you to fine-tune your fertilization practices accordingly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the ideal fertilizer ratio for Bermuda grass?

The ideal fertilizer ratio for Bermuda grass is one with plenty of nitrogen, some potassium, and little to no phosphorus. This blend of nutrients, called the NPK ratio, helps your Bermuda grass look its best.

When is the best time to fertilize Bermuda grass?

The best time to fertilize Bermuda grass is during its active growing season, which is typically from late spring to early fall. You should apply fertilizers at least twice during this period for optimal results, with the first application in late spring and the second one in late summer or early fall.

Is liquid fertilizer recommended for Bermuda grass?

Liquid fertilizers can be an effective choice for Bermuda grass because they are easy to apply and allow for quick nutrient absorption by the grass. However, granular fertilizers also work well, especially if you are looking for a more controlled release of nutrients over time.

How does the choice of fertilizer for Bermuda grass vary by location?

The choice of fertilizer for Bermuda grass can vary based on factors such as climate, soil type, and regional nutrient preferences. Therefore, it is important to test your soil and select a fertilizer that targets the specific nutrient needs of your lawn. Feel free to consult with a local lawn expert or extension agent for personalized recommendations for your specific region.

What type of fertilizer promotes a thicker, greener lawn?

A higher nitrogen content in your fertilizer will promote a thicker, greener lawn for your Bermuda grass. Nitrogen is essential for robust shoot growth and overall vitality of the grass. Consider selecting a fertilizer with a higher nitrogen ratio to boost the lushness of your Bermuda grass.

Is 10-10-10 or 13-13-13 fertilizer more suitable for Bermuda grass?

Both 10-10-10 and 13-13-13 fertilizers provide an equal ratio of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. However, for Bermuda grass, it is best to choose a fertilizer with an emphasis on nitrogen and a reduced phosphorus level. Therefore, neither 10-10-10 nor 13-13-13 ratios are ideal for Bermuda grass. Instead, look for fertilizers with a higher nitrogen ratio and lower phosphorus content.

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Aaron is the founder of and Essential Home and Garden. With over 15 years of hands-on experience in home ownership, lawn care, and gardening, Aaron is a seasoned expert in areas like lawn care, DIY, HVAC, and pest control.

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