All lawns will perform at their best, and have the least amount of problems, when a good fertilising program is maintained throughout the year. Actually, fertilising is quite possibly the easiest task you need to do to gain a perfect lawn.

In fact, if your lawn is looking pale or yellow, it’s most likely in dire need of a good fertilising program.

There are many different brands of lawn fertiliser for sale. Fertilisers range in price from around $20 to $40 for 20 kg bags, which will often spread at a rate of 50 grams per square meter. While some concentrated fertilisers can be bought for a slightly lower price for 10 kg bags and spread at a rate of 25 grams per square meter.

When choosing a fertiliser, the best starting point is to find one best suited to your soil and lawn.
Generally slow-release fertilisers do better than non-slow release even though they are slightly more expensive. Normal fertiliser washes through quickly, whilst slow release lasts for about 3-months.

Slow release fertilisers also work out more cost effective, despite the higher price. Some of the fertilisers have been formulated with a longer lasting fertiliser, which works well for lawns such as Buffalo that only above ground runners, unlike Kikuyu, Zoysia and Couch which have underground runners.
The other reason why slow release fertilisers are good is that they do not burn. So, if you forget to water straight away, die back will not result. This is important on non-rhizomatous lawns such as Buffalo. Despite this, if you cannot find the safer slow release types, then most lawn fertilisers will work well, just remember to water them in.

Another factor to consider is time of the year. Lower in Nitrogen in summer and autumn, and higher Nitrogen in spring. Some fertilisers take this into account.


  • Before fertilising your lawn rake away all debris, such as leaves.
  • Always select a fertiliser that suits the time of year, your lawn and your soil.
  • Best results are achieved by fertilising at least three times a year – early spring, early summer and mid to late autumn.
  • If you choose to only fertilise once a year do so in late spring.
  • Ensure you apply the fertiliser evenly.
  • Follow the label’s directions for when and how to water after fertilising.
  • Allow about two-days after mowing before applying the fertiliser.
  • Do not mow your lawn for about one week after fertilising (do not use a catcher).