Early spring is an ideal time to fertilize tall fescue pastures, says Oscar Ingram, University of Missouri extension agronomy specialist.

He says a ton of fescue removes about 45 lbs of nitrogen, 12 lbs of phosphorus and 50 lbs of potassium. But nutrient removal can be highly variable under pasture conditions.

“For the best results, soil samples should be taken and fertilizer applied according to test results,” Ingram advises.

In the absence of test results, he suggests broadcasting a mixed fertilizer such as 90-30-120 just before green-up to stimulate grass growth in spring and early summer.