The Best Fertilizer for Shrubs and When to Do It (Based on Experts)

2 min read

Experts recommend using a balanced, slow-release fertilizer for shrubs in early spring and late fall for the best possible growth and flowering.

a Rose shrub fertilized the right way
a Rose shrub fertilized the right way

Understanding Shrub Fertilization

Fertilizing shrubs is important for their growth and health but also when you try to revive dying shrubs.

Knowing the right fertilizer and timing can make all the difference. A balanced approach, tailored to the specific needs of your shrubs, will promote growth and blooms.

a leafy shrub that is growing well
a leafy shrub that is growing well

The Best Time to Fertilize Shrubs

The timing of fertilization significantly impacts the health and growth of your shrubs.

What Experts Say:

"The best time to fertilize shrubs is typically in the early spring as new growth begins. This provides the plants with essential nutrients for the surge of spring growth. It's also beneficial to apply a slower-release fertilizer in the late fall to help shrubs withstand winter stresses." advises Mike Drouin, expert gardener and co-founder of

Fertilizing in early spring kick-starts growth by providing necessary nutrients as the plants emerge from dormancy. Late fall fertilization helps shrubs store energy for the winter and ensures a robust start the following spring.

Fertilization Techniques and Tips

Proper application is just as important as choosing the right fertilizer and timing. Apply the fertilizer around the drip line of the shrub, which is the outermost circumference of the shrub's branches.

This method ensures that the roots, which extend outward, can easily access the nutrients. Water the fertilizer in a well to help dissolve and distribute the nutrients into the soil.

a well fertilized shrub in full sun
a well fertilized shrub in full sun

The Best Fertilizers for Shrubs

What Experst Advise:

"The slow release formula encourages strong healthy growth, improves soil fertility, soil structure and moisture retention.' states Jane Westoby an expert in flower care from

These fertilizers are designed to feed your plants over several months, which means less work for you and a more consistent nutrient supply for your shrubs similar when making grass or moss last longer.

Do Plants Like Coffe Grounds?

Yes, for most of the plants like coffe grounds because they provide a bunch of nutrients.

“Acid-loving plants such as azaleas, rhododendrons, blueberries, and hydrangeas benefit from coffee grounds due to their acidic nature. These plants thrive in soil with a lower pH level, which coffee grounds can help maintain or achieve.“ States Andy Fleming webmaster at

How Many Times to Fertilize Your Shubs

What Experts are Saying:

"I tend to recommend fertilizing your shrubs twice a year. In my experience, fertilizing in fall can help shrubs make it through winter healthier, and fertilizing in early spring prior to the active growth period can also help give your shrubs a boost to encourage healthy root and plant growth." Ryan Farley, CEO of and expert in plant care.