What is 0-0-60 Fertilizer Good For? – When and How to Use It?

If you’re looking for a high-potassium fertilizer, a 0-0-60 fertilizer is a good option. It can provide plants with a hefty dose of potassium and is relatively inexpensive.

I will provide more details about this fertilizer and cover how to apply 0-0-60 fertilizer. Then I’ll provide some recommendations for 0-0-60 fertilizers.

What Is 0-0-60 Fertilizer?

If you’re looking for a fertilizer that’s high in potassium and low in other nutrients, a 0-0-60 fertilizer fits the bill. This fertilizer contains 60% potassium by weight and no nitrogen or phosphorus.

If you’d like to learn more about fertilizer numbers and what they mean, you can check out our article on the topic.

Adding potassium to the soil ensures your plants can access this essential macronutrient. In addition, potassium helps plants move materials such as water, nutrients, and carbohydrates throughout the plant.

It also significantly affects a plant’s ability to withstand cold and heat, fight against disease, fend off insect attacks, develop strong roots and stems, and produce fruit and flowers.

If a plant is experiencing potassium deficiency, the leaves may wilt and dry on hot days. You may also notice that the leaf tips on older leaves become curled and/or brown, and the leaves become yellow in between the veins.

What Is 0-0-60 Fertilizer Used For?

Since this type of fertilizer is so high in potassium, it’s used when plants need a large amount of this nutrient. This can occur anytime a soil is deficient in potassium.

The best way to tell if your soil needs potassium is to take a soil test. By taking into account the amount of potassium in the soil and a plant’s potassium needs, you can determine whether or not you need to add more potassium to the soil.

You can apply 0-0-60 fertilizer on its own if you want to add a large amount of potassium and no other nutrients.

However, potash is often mixed with other fertilizers to supply plants with a well-balanced blend of nutrients. In fact, many fertilizer companies use potash as an ingredient in fertilizer blends.

No matter if you’re applying a 0-0-60 fertilizer on its own or mixing it with other nutrients, you can use it in a wide variety of applications. It can provide a boost of potassium to lawns, trees, shrubs, vegetable gardens, row crops, and more.

When and How to Apply 0-0-60 Fertilizer?

When deciding whether or not you should apply potash, you must consider the crops you are growing and your soil. As I mentioned above, conducting a soil test is always a good step before you decide to fertilize.

If the soil already has adequate levels of potassium, there is no need to apply a 0-0-60 fertilizer. However, it’s worth noting that plants may display signs of potassium deficiency even if there is enough potassium in the soil.

Inconsistent or low soil moisture can prevent plants from taking up the potassium they need. Therefore, you should aim to keep the soil consistently moist so plants can access and take up the potassium they need.

With all that said, here’s how you should apply 0-0-60 fertilizer to various types of plants.

How to Apply 0-0-60 Fertilizer to Lawns

Typically, lawns will benefit from fertilizers that contain lots of nitrogen and just a bit of potassium. That’s why you’ll often see lawn fertilizers with NPK ratios like 30-0-4.

However, if you don’t want to apply a pre-blended fertilizer or your soil is low in potassium, you can apply 0-0-60 fertilizer to your lawn.

The amount of 0-0-60 you should apply depends on your soil test results as well as the type of grass you are growing. For example, tall fescue and zoysia grass require more potassium than centipede grass and Kentucky bluegrass.

However, if you’re unsure about the potassium level in your soil and the nutrient requirements of your grass, you can start with a rate of two pounds of 0-0-60 per 1,000 square feet.

The best time to apply 0-0-60 fertilizer to your lawn is in the fall. You can apply the annual dose of fertilizer all at once during this time. However, you can also apply the fertilizer in the spring if you miss out on a fall application.

The easiest way to evenly apply 0-0-60 fertilizer to your lawn is with a drop spreader. Calibrate your spreader to apply two pounds per 1,000 square feet, and walk across your lawn to apply the fertilizer evenly.

How to Apply 0-0-60 Fertilizer to Trees and Shrubs

Since trees and shrubs need a mix of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, applying a fertilizer containing all three of these macronutrients is best. However, if your soil is very deficient in potassium or you’d like to create your own fertilizer blend, you can apply 0-0-60 fertilizer to trees and shrubs.

As is the case with all plants, I recommend testing your soil before applying 0-0-60 to trees and shrubs. If you opt to forgo a soil test, the recommended application rate of 0-0-60 fertilizer is two pounds per every 1,000 square foot of area covered by trees and shrubs.

When you’re figuring out the area to fertilize, remember that tree roots can span over a huge area! Even if a tree trunk is only two feet wide, the plant’s roots may expand over two times the width of the canopy!

The best times to apply 0-0-60 fertilizer are the spring and fall. You can apply all the fertilizer at once, or split it up into two applications.

Using a fertilizer spreader is the easiest way to evenly apply granular fertilizer. However, if you are only applying a small amount of fertilizer to a few shrubs or small trees, you can use your hands to evenly distribute the fertilizer around the plant’s root zones.

How to Apply 0-0-60 Fertilizer to Vegetable Gardens

Like all plants, vegetable crops like tomatoes, lettuce, and carrots require many different nutrients to thrive. And potassium is one of these nutrients.

Before you start a vegetable garden in a new area, it’s always a good idea to test the soil to gain a baseline understanding of the nutrients present (as well as those that are lacking). If you find that your soil is deficient in potassium, you can use a 0-0-60 fertilizer to boost the potassium levels.

In general, the potassium level in soils should be between 125 and 175 ppm (250 and 350 lbs/acre) in order to grow healthy vegetables. The amount of 0-0-60 you should apply depends on your soil test results.

If your results show that the soil only contains 50 ppm (100 lbs/acre) potassium, you need to add about 150 lbs of potassium per acre. That translates to 250 lbs 0-0-60 fertilizer per acre.

However, if you’re on a small scale, you’re likely working in lbs per 1,000 square feet. If that’s the case, you’ll need to apply 2.75 lbs of 0-0-60 per 1,000 square feet to get your potassium levels up to optimum levels.

But remember this is just an example! If your soil contains less than 50 ppm potassium, you’ll need to add more 0-0-60 fertilizer. And if your soil contains more than 50 ppm potassium, you won’t have to add as much 0-0-60.

The best time to apply a 0-0-60 fertilizer is in the fall or spring before you plant your crops in the ground. Fertilizing once will get your soil potassium levels at a good spot.

From this point on, I recommend switching over to a fertilizer with an NPK ratio like 3-4-4 or 5-5-5 to supply your vegetable with nutrients as they grow.

Applying 0-0-60 Fertilizer to Houseplants

Since 0-0-60 fertilizer contains so much potassium, you should avoid applying it to houseplants. These plants only require small amounts of potassium, so you are better off using a fertilizer with an NPK ratio like 1-1-1 or 3-3-3.

Types of 0-0-60 Fertilizer

While some types of fertilizer are available in a wide variety of forms, this isn’t the case with 0-0-60. If you opt to use this fertilizer, you’ll be using a granular formula.

Granular 0-0-60 Fertilizer

The most common type of 0-0-60 fertilizer is a granular form. This type of product is made up of small, water-soluble granules that can range in color from white to pink.

You can apply granular fertilizer with a fertilizer spreader or via hand.

The most common type of 0-0-60 granular fertilizer is potassium chloride, KCl. This material accounts for about 90% of the potassium applied worldwide.

It is typically mined from below the earth’s surface, but it can also be extracted from sea water. Potassium chloride is approved for organic production by the Organic Materials Review Board (OMRI).

My Top Choices for 0-0-60 Fertilizer

If you decide that 0-0-60 fertilizer is the right choice for you, I recommend choosing between these two options. While they are the same materials, the package size is different.

And if you’re applying 0-0-60 on a large scale, you can look for 50 pound bags of 0-0-60 fertilizer at places such as Tractor Supply Company.

Easy Peasy Muriate of Potash

Easy Peasy Muriate of Potash

If you’re looking for a small amount of 0-0-60 fertilizer for your vegetable garden or lawn, this product from Easy Peasy is a good option. It comes in a five-pound bag, which means shipping is affordable and you won’t have to deal with an excessively large amount of fertilizer.

This muriate of potash product consists of granules of potassium chloride (KCl). Applying these granules is easy—just evenly distribute them across the soil surface and then water well.

Garden Naturals Natural Potash

Garden Naturals Natural Potash

Garden Naturals offers a more economical option if you need to apply a larger amount of 0-0-60 fertilizer. This 25 pound bag may be a better option if you need to fertilize a large lawn or garden, or if your soil is extremely deficient in potassium.

Both the Garden Naturals product and Easy Peasy product contain the same material: potassium chloride. The main difference between these two products is the size of the package.

If you opt for this larger package, you will be paying less per ounce of product.

It’s important to remember that KCl is water soluble. That means you’ll need to be extra careful to store leftover product away from moist areas. I like to keep extra fertilizer tightly sealed in a plastic bag tucked inside a plastic bin or trash can.

Precautions When Applying 0-0-60 Fertilizer

Since 0-0-60 fertilizer contains such a large amount of potassium, it’s important to not over apply this fertilizer. If the soil contains too much potassium, plants will have a difficult time taking up other crucial nutrients.

Therefore, you should always follow application recommendations when applying 0-0-60 fertilizer.

You should also be aware that 0-0-60 fertilizer can cause harm if you ingest it or get it in your eyes. Therefore, you should always apply it with caution and keep it away from children and pets.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Does 0-0-60 Fertilizer Compare to Bone Meal?

Bone meal and 0-0-60 fertilizer both supply plants with nutrients, but they are very different. While 0-0-60 fertilizer only provides plants with potassium, bone meal supplies nitrogen and phosphorus but no potassium.

Is 0-0-60 Fertilizer Organic?

Many types of 0-0-60 fertilizer, including KCl, are approved for organic production. However, other types of potassium fertilizer including potassium sulfate (0-0-50) and langbeinite (0-0-22) are also potassium fertilizers commonly used in organic production.

How Long Does It Take 0-0-60 Fertilizer to Work?

Since 0-0-60 fertilizer is made up of water soluble potassium chloride, it is relatively quick to work. As long as you receive rain or irrigate after application, the fertilizer will be available to plants soon after application.

However, if your plants are potassium deficient, it will likely take a few weeks before they show signs of recovery. And don’t forget that consistently moist soil is a key part of potassium uptake.

Consider Your Fertilizer Options

It’s important to remember that 0-0-60 is just one type of fertilizer, and it may not be the best choice for every situation. Learning about other types of fertilizer can help you choose the best product for your plants.

To learn more about fertilizers, check out our articles on 12-12-12 fertilizer and 46-0-0 fertilizer.

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Briana Yablonski

Briana holds a B.S. in Plant Sciences from Penn State University and has been working with plants, soil, and ecology for over ten years. She spent five years working on vegetable farms throughout the East Coast before starting her own farm in 2020. She has been writing about plants, food, and science since 2019.

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