University of Florida

Slow-Release Fertilizers

Have you heard of slow-release fertilizer and wondered if you should use it? The answer is yes.

Nutrients from misapplied fertilizer can wash from our landscapes into waterways by rain and irrigation runoff. Slow-release fertilizer helps reduce pollution problems, because it releases nutrients slowly.

Bags are marked "slow release" or "controlled release" and the label indicates the percentage of slow-release nutrients. The higher the percentage, the less chance there is of leaching.

Slow-release fertilizers can also be applied less frequently, making them more cost-effective. Your plants will be fed with light but frequent doses of fertilizer, which will help them thrive.

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