What is Triple 16 fertilizer? How to use it? Lawn care

Today we will discuss fertilizers, especially chemical fertilizer. The use of fertilizer whether chemical or organic is inevitable for every gardener. You have to use it in one way or another. So it is very important to understand the type, composition, and uses before selecting any fertilizer especially the chemical ones. We will start with understanding the Commonly available Triple 16 chemical fertilizer.

What is Triple 16 fertilizer How to use it
What is Triple 16 fertilizer & How to use it?

Check out my previous post: How to Propagate Blueberry bush from Cuttings?

What is triple 16 fertilizer?

Triple 16 is balanced chemical fertilizer. The name indicates that this fertilizer contains 16% of Nitrogen, 16% Phosphorus, and  16% Potassium by weight.

It is a balanced blend of 16 part Nitrogen, 16 part Potasium, and 16 part Phosphorus salt in total 100 parts of fertilizers. The 52 part of leftover in the fertilizer is simply fillers like fine sand and gravels. 

In simple words, we can say that out of 100 oz or Kg of triple 16 fertilizer only 16 oz or kg each has Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium. Rest is only filler like fine sand or something like that.

Triple 16 fertilizer is also known as NPK 16:16:16. This naming clearly denotes the proportion of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium in the fertilizer.

The composition of the triple 16 fertilizer is mostly complex salts of several minerals. It may contain Urea, Potassium nitrate, and some phosphates. Together they release an equal amount of soluble nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium to the soil.

What is Triple 16 fertilizer used for?

Triple 16 or NPK16:16:16 is a balanced fertilizer. We use this kind of balanced fertilizer in the fields to increase the nutrient level.

It will feed the soil and provide enough nutrients for root, shoot, and fruit growth. Now, this is a matter of consideration which one is your requirement.

Generally, you can use a triple 16 fertilizer in flower beds and vegetable gardens. Keep in mind, these fertilizers are chemical salts. So only use it when required and keep the concentration low.

How do you apply triple 16 fertilizer?

NPK 16:16:16 fertilizers are available in two variants- Slow-release granules and  Fast release water-soluble granules.

Slow release or sulfur coated triple 16 fertilizers are granular in shape. It slowly releases nutrients and feeds the soil for an extended time. Apply the fertilizer in the early morning or evening time. Don’t forget to water the soil and plants after applying this fertilizer. Generally, the land or field is cleaned and tilled before applying these fertilizers. It is applied to enrich the soil before cultivation. This can be repeated according to the need for the cultivar.

Fast release triple 16 fertilizers are water-soluble in nature. You can either spread the granules in the fields before watering or just spray the water solution to the plants. Spraying fertilizer in liquid form is very effective for rapid plant growth. Though you have to keep the concentration very low otherwise it can burn the plants.

Is Triple 16 good for lawns?

Our lawns contain mostly green grass turfs. Grass needs nitrogen for rapid foliage growth and potassium for strong root growth. Now the fertilizer we are discussing i.e NPK 16:16:16 or triple 16 contains all three of them. That’s nice. But we generally don’t require that much quantity of phosphorus. It can encourage flowering in the grass. And we don’t want that with our turfs.

Instead, you can use this fertilizer to replenish the soil nutrients in the spring. It is ideal to use before seeding your lawn. Once your lawn is ready and looks green feed it with NPK 30:0:16. This combination is more useful and cost-effective for a healthy green lawn.

How long does it take for triple 16 fertilizer to work?

The fast-release fertilizer will start working in 10-24 hours. You can see visible changes within a couple of days. You have to reapply this fertilizer every 20-30 days.

The slow-release triple 16 fertilizers will do the same in 7-10 days. It seems slow but it is more effective in cultivation.

It releases only the required amount of nutrients over time. Hence it will save your resources for a long time. A single application of this NPK 16:16:16 can work for 25-40 days in the soil. It can give you support for an extra couple of weeks.

Also read: How to Propagate a Lime or Lemon Tree by Air Layering?

how much triple 16 fertilizer per acre?

The amount of fertilizer required per acre is dependent on several factors. The type of cultivar is the most important factor in this list. Other important factors to consider are- Temperature, Moisture, and Sunlight.

High heat and bright sunlight can quickly break and damage the fertilizer. Some of the constituents have a low boiling point and they can quickly sublime. In simple words, useful nutrients can easily evaporate in high heat and direct sunlight.

Water or moisture is another important factor in this list. It is the main carrier of nutrients. The nutrients dissolved in water can feed the plants. So if the moisture in the soil is very low then the application of fertilizer is useless. Otherwise too much water or flooded land can carry the nutrients from one place to another. In both cases, the plants and the soil will have a deficit of nutrients. Simply your fertilizer will be wasted. So try to maintain enough moisture in the soil.

After all these considerations you should understand one important thing. Different plants or cultivars need different amounts of fertilizers. So The amount of triple 16 fertilizer per acre can vary from 15-40 kg or 35-80 pounds.

Where to buy triple 16 fertilizer

A garden store is an ideal place to buy a triple 16 fertilizer. you can check the manufacturing details, Composition, Types of salts used, expiration time, and the proper method to use it. The best part of this purchase is that you can bargain for the price if possible.

Some farms and nurseries also sell this fertilizer. So you can give them a try especially if one is near your residence. Finally, the best buying option in this Covid pandemic situation is Amazon. You can Checkout my favorite NPK 16:16:16 fertilizer or triple16 fertilizer on Amazon.

Precautions with triple 16 fertilizer

Triple 16 fertilizer is chemical salt-based fertilizer. So read the application method carefully before use. Excess use of these fertilizers can change the soil ph. It can permanently damage the soil.

The plants can burn and you may lose your cultivation with a simple mistake. Take some precautions in the Application.

  1. Never apply any chemical fertilizer in the hot afternoon time. It will damage the fertilizers. Your money will be wasted.
  2. Don’t leave fertilizer granules over plant leaves. It will burn and kill the plant.
  3. Always apply water after fertilizer. This will settle down the granules and feed the plants as required.
  4. Never repeat the fertilizer before the scheduled date. Frequent fertilization may damage the soil and plants instead of helping them.
  5. Apply triple 16 fertilizer only to the plants that require all three nutrients. Else the unused nutrients are simply wasted. You can save money by considering the actual requirements of your plants.

Check out: Is dog poop good fertilizer-How to compost it?

Final Word

Triple 16 fertilizer is a balanced fertilizer. It can feed your plants with an equal amount of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The exact proportion of nutrients in this fertilizer is 16:16:16 i.e NPK 16:16:16. You can use it for the general fertilization of the soil. It will enrich the soil with all three nutrients. Always use it with care.

Keep reading keep gardening!


Hi, My name is Sukant. I am an I.T professional. Gardening for me is not just a hobby, it's a way of living life with nature. My Ancestors were Commercial farmers: So I personally feel attached to the green. I am not an expert, I'm here only to share my gardening experiences. It's always Refreshing.

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