Learn how to choose the right type of lawn products that will work on your grass, and get recommendations for the best weed and feed. Read on to learn how weed killers work and see why recommendations for the top weed killers. If you have a problem with weeds in your yard, it's important to find the best grass fertilizer with weed killer to keep your lawn looking neat and weed-free all summer. …
The Best Weed and Feeds of 2022
Get your lawn looking healthy and green by selecting the right product for your grass.
By Debbie Wolfe | Updated May 30, 2022 12:00 PM
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Keeping your lawn looking great means that you need to weed frequently, and fertilize at the right times of the year. If your lawn looks a bit drab and weedy, bring it back to life with weed and feed fertilizers and herbicides. Designed to introduce essential nutrients into the ground that accelerate the growth of your grass, these products help your lawn grow thick and healthy, and with no weeds.
Take a look at our guide to help you choose the right type of lawn products that will work on your grass, and our top picks for the best weed and feed options for purchase today.
- BEST OVERALL:Scotts Turf Builder Weed and Feed
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK:GreenView Weed & Feed
- UPGRADE PICK:BioAdvanced All-in-One Weed & Feed
- BEST COOL SEASON:GreenView Fairway Formula
- BEST WARM SEASON:Scotts Turf Southern Triple Action
- BEST FOR WEED PREVENTION:Preen One LawnCare
- BEST LIQUID:Scotts Liquid Turf Builder Weed Control
Before You Buy
Maintaining a healthy lawn includes mowing, weeding, watering, and fertilizing. However, fertilizing isn’t always necessary. Over-fertilizing your lawn will make the grass grow more vigorously, causing you to have to mow more frequently or lead to run-off which ends up in your local watershed.
Excessive fertilizing can result in lawn burn, which is when the nitrogen and salt levels in the soil are too high and cause yellow to brown strips or patches of dead grass. A lawn, as with any type of plant, only needs fertilizing if the soil lacks the vital nutrients to help it grow. In situations like these, fertilizing your soil is essential.
Types of Weed and Feed
Weed and feed comes in two forms: liquid and granular. Although the liquid forms are easier to apply and provide faster results, it’s more economical to use the granular form. Spray or liquid weed and feed are designed for small yards. Granular weed and feed covers more area, often 5,000 square feet or more, and are available in 18-lb bags and larger. Granular versions offer a better value for your money, but you do need to water your lawn after application for it to penetrate the grass.
Some weed and feed feature slow-release formulas so you don’t have to fertilize as often. However, to achieve good results plan on treating your lawn at least once every eight weeks from the start of spring.
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Weed and Feed
Type of Turf Grass
The best weed and feed product for your lawn depends on the type of grass you have. Grass species have different nutrient requirements, so not all of them are safe for every species of grass. Using the wrong product can damage your grass. In general, grass species are divided into two categories: warm season and cool season. The seasons do not refer to the time of year, but the climate and average soil temperature range.
- Warm-season turfgrasses grow best with average soil temperatures between 80 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Warm-season grasses thrive in warmer climates found in the Southeastern and Southwestern United States and include Bahia grass, Bermuda grass, carpet grass, Saint Augustine grass, and zoysia grass (Japanese lawn grass).
- Cool-season turfgrasses grow best with average soil temperatures between 60 and 75 Fahrenheit. Cool-season grasses thrive in the cooler climates of the Midwest and Northern regions of the United States. Some cool-season grasses are Kentucky bluegrass, perennial ryegrass, and tall and hard fescue.
Selecting a fertilizer and weed killer that’s compatible with your grass species will give you far better results.
To grow a lush lawn, your soil needs to have essential nutrients. Fertilizers temporarily add nutrients to the soil. Fertilizers denote their nutrient ratios as NPK. This denotation represents the percentage of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) in the product. This is how the nutrients help grass:
- Nitrogen helps the grass to grow properly and develop a green color.
- Phosphorus helps to develop strong root systems.
- Potassium protects plants from disease, drought, and cold.
There are at least 11 states that ban phosphorus fertilizer use or sale. Luckily, many lawn weed and feed products available have adapted to this and have removed phosphorus from the product. Don’t worry—the weed and feed will still green up and thicken the grass without the additional phosphorus.
Fertilizers can also contain secondary elements and micronutrients needed for healthy growth such as sulfur, calcium, magnesium, boron, iron, molybdenum, zinc, copper, chloride, nickel, and manganese. To find out exactly what nutrients your lawn needs can be determined by conducting a soil test. You can either purchase a test to use at home or take a soil sample to your local cooperative extension testing office.
Many fertilizers also have built-in herbicides or weed preventatives. Some products are better at killing certain types of common weeds and pests than others. In general, most weed and feed target common types of broadleaf weeds including plantain, chickweed, creeping charlie, dandelions, and clover.
Weed preventers, or pre-emergent weed killers, block weed seeds that are already in the soil, like crabgrass, poa annua, chickweed, and henbit, from germinating. Identify the type of weeds that are infesting your lawn and then make sure you choose a product that’s made to take care of it.
Our Top Picks
The following list takes into account the above considerations to narrow the field to some of the most effective weed and feeds on the market. This list includes both liquid and granular weed treatments for improving your lawn.
The Best Weed Killers for Your Lawn for 2022
Wondering how to choose the best weed killer for your lawn? Read on to learn how weed killers work, how to apply these products, and our recommendations for the top weed killers.
If your lawn is getting out of control with weeds, hand pulling them just isn’t going to cut it. Sure, you can tug out a few by the root, but it may be difficult and time-consuming to do that for your entire yard. That’s where weed killers come in, often the best method for lawn weed control.
There are tons of lawn weed killers on the market, so it may be difficult to choose the exact right one for your lawn. The This Old House Reviews Team has rounded up the top weed killers for 2022—and how to choose them. For extensive weed control and lawn care, we recommend considering a lawn company like TruGreen.
Before you can choose the proper weed killer, you’ll have to determine exactly what type of weed you’re dealing with. Different weed types require different treatments—what’s effective for one may do little or no damage to another.
There are three main categories of weeds: broadleaf, grassy, and grass-like.
1. Broadleaf weeds
These weeds have broad, flat leaves, so it’s unlikely you’ll mistake them for grass. They thrive in soil that’s lacking key nutrients, and they come in different types—annual, biennial, and perennial, so different broadleaf weed varieties require different chemicals depending on their life cycle.
Examples of broadleaf weeds include dandelions, ground ivy, clover, chickweed, dollarweed, thistle, and oxalis.
2. Grassy weeds
Grassy weeds have leaves that look like grass blades, and they grow one at a time. Examples of grassy weeks include crabgrass, quackgrass, goosegrass, and foxtail.
3. Grass-like weeds
This weed type resembles grass, but its leaves are more tube-like and triangular than flat. Examples of grass-like weeks include garlic, nutsedge, and wild onion.
How Weed Killers Work
Weed killers work by using chemicals that kill the weed or prevent its growth. There are a variety of different herbicide types to treat weeds at different stages of their life cycle—or before they even sprout. Here are the main characteristics to consider when choosing your specific weed killer.
Pre- or post-emergent
Pre-emergent weed killers target weed seedlings before they get a chance to sprout. If weeds have already popped up, this type won’t help. Post-emergent weed killers are designed to eradicate weeds in their active growing season. You apply post-emergent weed killers directly to the plants’ leaves.
Selective or non-selective
This aspect is critical. Selective weed killers eliminate weeds without harming beneficial plants nearby, while non-selective herbicides will damage all nearby plants, even if they’re beneficial.
Systemic or topical
Systemic weed killers attack the entire plant, including the roots. Topical herbicides, on the other hand, only kill the areas where the weed killer is applied.
Persistent or non-persistent
Persistent weed killers stay active after you apply them to prevent future weeds. Non-persistent weed killers don’t offer ongoing weed control.
How to Apply Weed Killer
Even if you select the right weed killer, applying it incorrectly can make your efforts fruitless, and the wrong application can cause complications.
Many weed killers need to be diluted with water and put in a spray bottle. The product’s label will explain precisely how much water and weed killer you’ll need to combine. Some weed killers, however, come in granular form. Solid weed killers must be applied with a spreader.
When applying weed killer, timing is everything. You don’t want to apply weed killer immediately after mowing your lawn since that could harm your tender grass. The same goes for fertilizer. In both cases, wait several days before applying weed killer.
The weather also plays a role in when to apply weed killer. Applying weed killer when it’s too hot can stress your grass, and applying it right too soon before it rains means it can wash away before it gets absorbed.
The 3 Best Weed Killers
Here are the top three best weed killers for 2022.
This powerful, fast-acting weed killer battles the exterior part of the weeds it contacts as well as the root systems. It kills stubborn weeds very efficiently, and spraying weeds selectively will ensure your lawn stays intact.
Preen Garden Weed Preventer
This pre-emergent, selective weed killer offers residual effects, with ingredients remaining active in the soil for three months after application. Preen prevents nearly 30 broadleaf weed varieties without hurting nearby plants.
Scotts Turf Builder Weed & Feed
Scotts’ most powerful weed and feed thickens grass while crowding out weeds. It’s especially effective against dandelions and clover. The company offers a satisfaction guarantee, promising your money back if you aren’t satisfied with your results.
Top Recommended Professional Lawn Care Company: TruGreen
If you’re battling stubborn weeds or confused about what weed killer is best, it may be time to call in the experts. The This Old House Reviews Team’s top selection for lawn care, TruGreen, offers both pre and post-emergent weed control.
The specialists at TruGreen can create a custom-made plan to restore your lawn to its former health and make sure it can compete against future weeds. The lawn care company offers five annual plans with varying levels of coverage in every state except for Alaska and Hawaii.
*First application. See quote for terms and conditions.
How to Prevent Weeds
When it comes to tackling weeds, the best defense is a good offense. You should always take these steps to keep your grass hardy and robust, reducing the chances of weeds taking over.
- Water deeply and infrequently—If you want your grass to have strong, deep roots, you need to water deeply and infrequently instead of choosing shallow, daily watering. With deep, sturdy roots, your grass can grow nice and thick and compete with weeds that may try to grow.
- Mow high—Weeds need sunlight to grow. If you let your grass blades grow taller by setting your lawn mower to the first or second highest setting, the grass will grow tall enough to cast shade on any weed seeds, preventing them from sprouting.
- Feed regularly—Stressed lawns are more susceptible to being crowded by weeds. Feeding regularly will keep your lawn lush and make it less hospitable to enterprising weeds.
Our Rating Methodology
To provide readers with the most objective, accurate, and detailed recommendations, the This Old House Reviews Team continually researches lawn care service companies on the market. We take the following steps to obtain up-to-date information about the industry and each company we review:
- Analyze more than 100 customer reviews from third-party review sites, such as Yelp, the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and Google Reviews, for each company
- Secret-shop for lawn care plans and packages to get a sense of cost, offered services, and the overall shopping experience for prospective customers
- Speak with representatives on the phone to simulate the customer service experience from each provider
- Update information on a regular basis to ensure the most accurate information when plans or services change with each company
We use the data from our research to build an in-depth rating system that allows us to score lawn care providers on a 100-point scale. Here are the factors in our evaluation and their designated scores:
- Plan options (30): As one of the most important factors for homeowners shopping for a lawn care service, this one is weighted heavily based on each company’s lawn coverage. Companies that offer more options, such as irrigation, weed control, seeding, and aeration services in addition to a general plan, score higher than others.
- Trustworthiness (30): Each company’s reputation is another significant factor for homeowners to consider before signing up for a plan. We scored providers based on their BBB score, accreditation, and offered guarantees available with each purchase.
- Additional Benefits (20): We gave extra points to companies that provide a few additional services and benefits with their offered plans, such as organic treatments, pest control services, and a mobile app for digital communication and plan management.
- Customer Service (10): In this rating category, we awarded points to customer-focused lawn care service providers who offer weekend availability and easy communication through phones, online chats, and online resources.
- Availability (10): We also scored companies based on their overall availability, rewarding those that are nationally available over local companies only operating in select cities or ZIP codes.
To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at [email protected].
Best Grass Fertilizer With Weed Killer 2021
The products and services mentioned below were selected independent of sales and advertising. However, Don’t Waste Your Money may receive a small commission from the purchase of any products or services through an affiliate link to the retailer’s website.
If you have a problem with weeds in your yard, it’s important to find the best grass fertilizer with weed killer to keep your lawn looking neat and weed-free all summer.
While you can always buy fertilizer and weed killer separately, there are plenty of products that combine them, which makes these landscaping tasks much easier. Of course, everyone’s lawn is different — some have tons of weeds, some have only a few — but because these mixes also include fertilizer, they’re good for nearly every type of lawn.
The best grass fertilizer with weed killer is one that will last a long time (preferably all summer) and will prevent multiple types of weeds, like crabgrass and dandelions.
Most grass fertilizers with weed killer come in large bags or spray bottles. Keep in mind how much product you’ll get for the price, as one bag may be enough for a smaller yard, but you will need multiple bags if you have a lot of land.
The Best Grass Fertilizer With Weed Killer
1. Scotts Turf Builder Starter Food For New Grass Plus Weed Preventer
This Scotts Turf Builder Starter Food for New Grass Plus Weed Preventer feeds new grass and prevents weeds for up to six weeks. It also improves seeding results, so it would work as well on sod and grass plugs as it would on existing lawns. One bag covers 5,000 square feet.
2. BioAdvanced Weed & Feed Crabgrass Killer
The BioAdvanced Weed & Feed Crabgrass Killer kills dandelion, clover, chickweed and more, while also greening and strengthening your lawn. One 24-pound bag treats up to 10,000 square feet.
3. Spectracide Weed & Feed Ready-to-Spray
The Spectracide Weed & Feed Ready-to-Spray in this 32-ounce bottle covers up to 7,500 square feet. Using a 20% nitrogen formulation, it controls dandelion, chickweed, knotweed, clover, mallow, purslane and other broadleaf weeds. It works by just connecting it to your hose and spraying.
4. GreenView Weed & Feed
The GreenView Weed & Feed comes in a 13-pound bag, which covers 5,000 square feet. The time-released formula feeds the lawn for up to eight weeks and kills more than 250 different weeds. It also restores nutrients to the soil and helps the lawn retain water to protect against heat and drought.
5. Miracle-Gro Shake ‘N Feed All Purpose Plant Food
The Miracle-Gro Shake ‘N Feed All Purpose Plant Food is also a weed-preventer. One application feeds plants and prevents weeds for up to three months, and one 4.5-pound jug treats around 125 square feet. It’s best to apply as early as possible in the growing season before weeds have emerged.
Do you apply grass fertilizer and weed killer to your lawn?
About the Author
Kaitlin is a freelance multimedia journalist with a background in newspaper and broadcasting. She has a degree in journalism and psychology, enjoys writing, editing, animals, music and movies/TV. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her on her yoga mat, whipping up a new vegetarian dish or at a wine tasting with friends. You can email her at [email protected] or find her on Facebook at Facebook.com/KaitlinGatesWrites. Learn More.