Liquid plant food makes lawns a rich emerald green with healthy roots and lush foliage, quickly and efficiently. Using liquid plant food is important over the course of a lawn's life because nutrients in the soil deplete as the lawn matures. The key elements in liquid plant food for lawns are nitrogen, which provides the rich color and makes it dense; potassium, which toughens the roots and foliage to make the grass disease resistant; and phosphorus, which promotes deep root growth.
The main ingredients of liquid plant food for your lawn are nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus (phosphate). Nitrogen is the most needed in your lawn, and is why liquid applications turn your lawn a rich green within days. Nitrogen also makes the foliage more sturdy and lush, helping it battle pests, weeds and disease. Potassium works with nitrogen mostly to deepen and toughen up the roots. This makes sure your grass is as disease-, drought- and cold-weather-resistant as it possibly can be. Phosphorus mostly works under the surface, down at the tip of the roots, to keep them durable and anchored.
Liquid lawn food comes in two varieties--organic and synthetic. Either way, it comes as a concentrated liquid that is applied by attaching a hose and nozzle to a spray bottle. Organic liquid lawn fertilizer comes from animal and plant sources and is not only good for your soil but also the environment. On the other hand, the organic liquid plant food doesn't work as quickly as synthetic fertilizer, but makes results last in the long haul. Synthetic liquid plant food is manufactured chemically and penetrates the soil quickly. But the downside for this type is that while the results are immediate, they fade quickly if the food is reapplied often. If applied incorrectly the food can burn your lawn.
The three main ingredients in liquid plant food are represented by the numbers on the container. For example, 10-10-10 indicates even amounts of the three, while 30-10-10 is for grass that needs a big nitrogen boost. A blend with more potassium (a higher third number) is good for preparing grass for winter.
Liquid lawn fertilizer provides even coverage (since it is a spray), and the process is simple since it comes in a small bottle instead of large, heavy granular fertilizer bags. The results are noticeable within a couple of days, so it is effective for a quick fix if you need to perk up your lawn for a get-together. Most liquid food has a combination of herbicide as well so it helps deter weeds.
Liquid plant food for your lawn does have some cons. It can be expensive, particularly if you don't have a hose to attach to the container of food. It is one of the more expensive types of plant food. Another downside is that you must apply this type of food frequently, and if you have large areas of lawn, this can take up a lot of time and energy.
Liquid plant food for lawns has drawbacks when it comes to the environment, especially if you live on a slope. Over-application of fertilizer causes runoff that can pollute streams and kill fish and other marine or plant life. It also can create algae to bloom and promote bad bacteria growth. Ultimately, it can contaminate drinking water. Make sure you don't over-apply your liquid plant food.