Scotts Green Max Lawn Fertilizer Review 2019
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Scotts Green Max Lawn Food

What could be more fitting of the American Dream than a deep green, perfectly lush and thick, healthy front yard lawn? Perhaps your backyard, too. Nothing complements your home better than a good lawn, and let’s face it, sometimes it’s near impossible to figure out why your green grass grows like weeds one year and seems barren the next. What could help is Scotts Green Max Lawn Food – but how?

Scotts Green Max Lawn Food and Its Best Alternatives for 2021

Scotts Green Max Lawn Food - Scotts Green Max Lawn FoodScotts Green Max Lawn Food
  • Coverage: 2,500, 5,000 or 10,000 square feet
  • NPK: 27-0-2
  • Type: Granular
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Urban Farm Fertilizers Liquid Lawn - Scotts Green Max Lawn FoodUrban Farm Fertilizers Liquid Lawn
  • Coverage: 130,000 square feet
  • NPK: 10-1-2
  • Type: Liquid
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Miracle-Gro Water Soluble Lawn Food - Scotts Green Max Lawn FoodMiracle-Gro Water Soluble Lawn Food
  • Coverage: 4,000 square feet
  • NPK: 36-0-6
  • Type: Granular and Liquid
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Safer Brand Lawn Restore - Scotts Green Max Lawn FoodSafer Brand Lawn Restore
  • Coverage: 6,250 square feet
  • NPK: 9-0-2
  • Type: Granular
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What Is Scotts Green Max Lawn Food and Should You Use It?

Man opening a bag of Scotts Green Max Lawn Food next to a push broadcast spreader standing on his lawn.
Image credits: Scotts via Amazon

Before we get started, you might also enjoy our guide to the best fertilizers, which will also tell you everything you need to know about how lawn fertilizers work.

Scotts GM is a fertilizer made specifically for grass – any grass. It includes iron to help give your grass a deeper green, and it’s full of nitrogen and potassium, too, but it shies away from phosphorus. These nutrients all have a specific job when it comes to feeding plant life. Nitrogen helps to strengthen each grass blade, while potassium aids in keeping your lawn’s health up.
Scotts promises deep greening in three days, and it’s thanks to that 5% level of iron that it can promise that. You can also expect fast results as far as growth goes. Compared to organic products, this grass food is fast-acting.

If you have an established lawn, this can help by giving it a boost of nutrients to help promote growth and health. However, if you have bald spots in your yard or you’re just starting to grow some seed, you should find another fertilizer that has phosphorous, which helps with root growth and is not present in this lawn food.



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Features and Benefits

Scotts Green Max Lawn Food is meant to help you grow greener grass, but it does more than that. Some of its features offer extra benefits.


As mentioned before, this feed includes more than 5% iron. Iron isn’t usually found in fertilizer formulas, but when it is, it’s to up the greening factor of the lawn food. In fact, iron can help boost the nitrogen typically found in fertilizers. Nitrogen makes grass green, but iron gives the hue a deeper, blueish-green color.

The only issue with iron is that it can cause rust stains. As long as you follow the directions on the bag, you shouldn’t have any problems with spots on your driveway or walkways. Spread the food, then sweep or blow away any granules from those areas before you water your lawn. If you do get any stains, you can clean them off with a rust remover.

27-0-2 NPK

If you’ve already got a green thumb, you probably know what NPK means. NPK stands for nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). You’ll find the NPK values listed on every bag of fertilizer, and on this Scotts GM Lawn Food, it’s listed as 27-0-2. This means that it’s heavy on nitrogen, which is what helps push those blades up through the soil and sprout. There’s no phosphorus, which means this fertilizer won’t help with any root growth, so it’s not suitable for a lawn you’re just growing from seed. There’s such a small amount of potassium that it may or may not lead to a healthier lawn.

It’s important to follow the directions on the bag, but also the rules of nature. You need to give your grass big drinks of water unless you’re getting some good, heavy rains. There’s a chance that this fertilizer won’t work for your lawn, and if that’s the case, it could be that your soil pH is out of balance. This is an inorganic fertilizer, so it’s designed to work well for any lawn.

Any Grass

Speaking of working well on any lawn, Scotts promises that its Green Max Lawn Food works for any type of grass. It’s good news for those in the south who are trying to grow Zoysia, which is known for being slow to green in the spring. Fine fescue can benefit greatly from this grass food because it notorious for spreading unevenly. Tall fescue is also a problem grass at times because it seems a bit clumpy at times, but this fertilizer can help fill in where the grass is shorter or thinner.

Although a grass like St. Augustine is beautiful, it’s a bit susceptible to disease, so it would benefit from a bit more potassium. Whatever grass you’re growing, though, this grass food is likely to help it grow thicker, faster, and greener. There’s another benefit to that rapid growth.

Chokes Out Weeds

Gardener loading a bag of Scotts Green Max Lawn Food into a broadcast spreader.
Image credits: Scotts via Amazon

Show me a lawn that has no weeds and I’ll show you a diligent gardener. Weeds are a hard fact of life when it comes to gardens and lawns. When you use a fertilizer like Scotts Green Max Lawn Food, though, the high level of nitrogen helps push weeds out. That boost of nutrients helps encourage your lawn to grow more blades of grass fast, which roots out the weeds and sort of chokes them out.

Some weeds are stubborn, especially if they’re already present, so you may still need to manually remove them. However, a thick, quick-growing lawn should help prevent new weeds from growing. Just be sure to not apply too much lawn feed or too often. And make sure your thirsty lawn gets plenty of water.

Three Sizes Available

You can get Scotts Green Max Fertilizer in three different sizes: 2,500 sq. ft., 5,000 sq. ft., and 10,000 sq. ft. Obviously, smaller yards will require less lawn food and bigger yards need more. It’s important to purchase the right size bag for your yard because you likely don’t want to leave an open bag hanging around. Although this is an inorganic fertilizer and it shouldn’t activate without being applied to a lawn and watered, the granules can clump in humid conditions or if it inadvertently gets wet. So, be careful how you store any leftover feed.

It’s easy enough to apply – you can simply spread it all over your yard with gloved hands. However, using a spreader will ensure more even coverage. Plus, many spreaders have edge guards, which help protect your driveway and sidewalks from the feed that could stain.

Every Two Months

The great thing about inorganic fertilizers like Scotts GM Feed is that you can apply it during any season. Scotts suggests that you apply this fertilizer to your grass every six to eight weeks, but you can probably wait longer if your grass is doing well. Of course, many types of grass are finicky when it comes to weather, so if your lawn is being stubborn during the winter even with the fertilizer, remember that your grass may not be meant for greening during that season.
The only place you cannot buy this particular fertilizer is Florida, due to certain environmental laws. However, Scotts sells a lawn feed that is similarly effective for residents of Florida.

Customer Reviews

Customers who have used Green Max report overwhelmingly positive results. Most people saw a greener lawn two to three weeks after applying the fertilizer to their existing lawns. Brown or yellow spots were replaced with thick, green-blue grass, and weeds were taken over by thick new grass growth.

The smell of the fertilizer is a bit off-putting, but it appears to fade after a good watering. Even following the directions, though, some people reported rust stains on their driveway – sometimes you can’t stop Mother Nature from blowing some of the granules astray. Those who complained about the lawn feed not working were only waiting three days, which is what the bag promises – greener grass in three days.

Alternative Lawn Fertilizers

If Scotts Green Max isn’t for you, whether it’s too high in nitrogen, your lawn needs phosphorus, or you prefer an organic product, you have some options. Each product has varying results.

Best Liquid Alternative

Urban Farm Fertilizers Liquid Lawn
    Choose this fertilizer if you've freshly planted your lawn and want to give it a boost of phosphorus.



Liquid Lawn is similar to Scotts Green Max Fertilizer in that it promises greener grass after using the product, but that’s about where the similarities end. You apply the fertilizer by diluting it with water and then spray it on your yard – there’s enough feed here to apply up to 130,000 square feet.

The NPK of this lawn feed is 10-1-2, so it’s less concentrated, which is kinder to water runoff. Plus, it includes a tiny bit of phosphorus, which helps with newly planted lawn and its roots. Additionally, you can apply this weaker fertilizer more often – every two weeks – with little risk of burning your lawn. Considering the number of applications you get with one gallon, this is a more economical purchase than Scotts.

Best High Nitrogen Alternative

Miracle-Gro Water Soluble Lawn Food
    A good alternative for those looking for a higher nitrogen concentration and less water runnoff.



Just as Scotts Green Max Lawn Food makes your grass greener and encourages more growth, so does Miracle-Gro Water Soluble Food. The differences are minimal. The cost of this feed is less than Scotts, but it only covers 4,000 sq. ft. This Miracle-Gro fertilizer works on any grass, but this feed is sprayed on, rather than shaking out as granules.

You’ll have to use Miracle-Gro slightly more often (every four to five weeks), which could end up costing you more in the end, especially if you have a lot of lawn to feed. The NPK is 36-0-6, so it isn’t appropriate for those just growing a lawn from seed. The nitrogen is much higher than that of Scotts, so you can expect quick growth. Because it’s water-soluble and applied directly, there’s less risk of water runoff, but if it’s a concern, you may want to stick to Scotts.

Best Organic Alternative

Safer Brand Lawn Restore
    This plant-based fertilizer is your best bet if you'll have kids or pets playing on the treated lawn.



If organic fertilizer is your bag, you may want to consider Safer Brand Lawn Restore. It only uses plant-based materials and no manure, so there’s no odor. The NPK is 10-0-6, so it’s a light lawn food that will encourage growth, and it encourages a strong immune system in your grass – more so than Scotts. Just as Scotts promises greener grass in three days, so does Safer Brand, although it’s more conservative with a three-to-five-day promise.

A 25-pound bag of Safer Brand’s lawn food will cover 5,000 square feet, so it’s right up there with Scotts, but it’s slightly more expensive. The biggest difference between this fertilizer and Scotts is that this one is organic, safe to use around pets and children, and there’s no chance of burning your lawn.

Feed Your Lawn

If your lawn is yellowed or browning, patchy in spots, or just needs a boost of nutrients to help the health and growth of your grass, you need lawn fertilizer. Scotts Green Max Lawn Food goes to work immediately to help restore those dead or dying spots in your lawn and encourages new growth. What you’ll likely see is thicker grass that’s a deeper green within three days. Give it a couple of weeks after some regular watering and mowing, though, and you should see an even more dramatic difference. Check out Scotts Green Max Lawn Food for yourself and see if it’s the food your lawn has been craving.

*You might also like: Revive Organic Lawn Fertilizer Review