Care should be taken when choosing fertilizers for yards where children play.

Scotts Fertilizer Ingredients

by Marissa Baker

Like other commercially available fertilizers, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium form the basis of Scotts fertilizers. Turf Builder, Miracle-Gro and Scotts' natural fertilizers all contain ingredients that may be harmful to children if played with or eaten. However, once the fertilizers are used on the lawn or garden according to package directions, they are safe for children to be around.

1. Basic Fertilizer Ingredients

The basic components of fertilizers are nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. These ingredients are represented on fertilizer labels as the N-P-K ratio. All commercially available fertilizers, including Scotts lawn and garden fertilizers, will have this ratio displayed on the label. If all three ingredients are included, such as in a 24-8-16 fertilizer, then the fertilizer is called complete or balanced. Some fertilizers will contain only one of these ingredients, such as nitrogen to green-up lawn grass.

2. Fertilizer Safety

Lawn and garden chemicals, including Scotts fertilizers, are toxic and must be stored where children cannot reach them. Follow label directions carefully when applying chemicals and wear protective gear including shoes, long pants, a long-sleeved shirt and eye protection. Fertilizers designated as child safe, such as Scotts Natural Lawn Food, are safe to apply where children play, but care should still be taken when storing and disposing of these chemicals. Left-over fertilizer should be given to someone who can use it, stored for later application, or taken to a location that disposes of hazardous household waste.

3. Scott's Lawn Fertilizers

Scotts Natural Lawn Food has an N-P-K ratio of 11-2-2 and is derived from hydrolyzed feather, meat, bone, blood meals and sulfate of potash. According to the label, it is safe for children to play on the lawn immediately after applying this fertilizer. Scotts Turf Builder lawn foods are chemically derived, and also described as kid- and pet-friendly when applied according to label directions. Super Turf builder has an N-P-K ratio of 32-2-8, and Turf Builder with 2 percent iron has a ratio of 32-0-4.

4. Scott's Garden Fertilizers

All-purpose, water-soluble Miracle-Gro is described as posing minimal risk to people. Its fertilizer ratio is 24-8-16, and it is applied by mixing 1 tablespoon of fertilizer with 1 gallon of water. The organic version of Miracle-Gro has a fertilizer ratio of 7-1-2, and is derived from poultry litter and feather meal. Osmocote slow-release plant food's fertilizer analysis is 19-6-12. It is chemically derived from ammonium nitrate, ammonium phosphate, calcium phosphate and potassium sulfate.

Photo Credits

  • Nick White/Digital Vision/Getty Images