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Prilled Urea vs. Granular Urea: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Harlon Moss || Published on February 15, 2024
Prilled urea are small, spherical beads used in agriculture; granular urea are larger, irregular particles with slower nutrient release.

Key Differences

Prilled Urea is characterized by its small, spherical shape, making it easy to apply. These tiny beads allow for uniform distribution in the soil. Granular Urea, on the other hand, consists of larger and more irregularly shaped particles. This difference in size and shape affects their behavior in soil.
Prilled Urea dissolves quickly in soil, offering rapid nitrogen release which is beneficial for quick nutrient requirements of crops. This fast action, however, can lead to volatilization losses if not managed properly. Granular Urea has a slower dissolution rate, which results in a more gradual release of nitrogen, reducing the risk of nitrogen loss and providing a sustained nutrient supply.
The production process of Prilled Urea involves the formation of droplets that solidify into small beads. This process makes it less dense and more susceptible to breaking. Granular Urea is produced through a different method, resulting in a denser and harder product, which is less prone to physical damage during handling and transport.
In terms of application, Prilled Urea is often preferred in foliar sprays due to its small size, allowing for better suspension in liquid solutions. Granular Urea, with its larger size, is commonly used for soil application, particularly in pre-planting scenarios where a gradual nutrient release is desired.
The choice between Prilled Urea and Granular Urea depends on specific agricultural needs. Prilled urea is ideal for immediate nutrient requirements, while granular urea suits long-term nutritional strategies.

Comparison Chart


Small, spherical beads
Larger, irregular particles

Dissolution Rate

Dissolves quickly, rapid nitrogen release
Slower dissolution, gradual nitrogen release

Production Process

Formed into small beads, less dense
Denser and harder, different method

Preferred Application

Suitable for foliar sprays
Ideal for soil application


Immediate nutrient requirements
Long-term nutritional strategies

Prilled Urea and Granular Urea Definitions

Prilled Urea

This form is suitable for short-term crop needs.
To address the sudden nitrogen deficiency, prilled urea was applied.

Granular Urea

Granular urea's irregular shape aids in uniform soil distribution.
The irregular granules of urea helped in achieving an even spread across the field.

Prilled Urea

Prilled urea is less dense and more susceptible to breaking.
While transporting, care was taken to prevent the prilled urea from breaking.

Granular Urea

This form is denser and less prone to physical damage.
The granular urea remained intact during transportation due to its hardness.

Prilled Urea

It is known for its rapid solubility in water.
Prilled urea dissolved immediately when mixed with water for the foliar feed.

Granular Urea

Granular urea is a larger, coarse form of nitrogen fertilizer.
The farmer spread granular urea in the field for a steady nutrient supply.

Prilled Urea

Prilled urea is often used in foliar applications due to its fine size.
The gardener sprayed prilled urea solution on the leaves for immediate absorption.

Granular Urea

It releases nitrogen slowly, suitable for long-term nutrition.
Granular urea was chosen for its slow-release properties, benefiting crop growth over time.

Prilled Urea

Prilled urea is a small, spherical form of nitrogen fertilizer.
Farmers often use prilled urea for its quick nutrient release in high-growth periods.

Granular Urea

Granular urea is ideal for soil incorporation before planting.
Before sowing, granular urea was mixed into the soil to enrich it.


Is prilled urea soluble in water?

Yes, prilled urea is highly soluble in water.

What are the advantages of prilled urea?

Its advantages include easy handling, uniformity in size, and suitability for use in various soil types.

What is the nitrogen content of prilled urea?

Prilled urea typically contains about 46% nitrogen.

Is prilled urea environmentally friendly?

It can be, but its high solubility can lead to nitrogen runoff and environmental concerns if not used properly.

How is prilled urea produced?

It's produced by spraying molten urea from the top of a prilling tower, which solidifies into small pellets as it falls.

How should prilled urea be stored?

It should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from moisture to prevent caking.

What is prilled urea?

Prilled urea is a small, spherical form of urea fertilizer, created by spraying urea in a tower to form tiny pellets.

Why choose granular urea over prilled?

Granular urea is often preferred for its lower dust content, reduced caking tendency, and better physical strength.

How is prilled urea applied?

It's often applied by broadcasting onto the soil surface or as a side dressing.

What are the key uses of prilled urea?

It's mainly used as a nitrogen fertilizer in agriculture, but also in animal feed and industrial applications.

What is the nitrogen content in granular urea?

Like prilled urea, granular urea also typically contains about 46% nitrogen.

How should granular urea be applied?

It's commonly applied using spreader equipment for even distribution.

Can prilled urea be used for all crops?

Generally, yes, but its effectiveness can vary depending on the crop and soil conditions.

What is granular urea?

Granular urea is a larger, coarser form of urea fertilizer, typically used for agricultural purposes.

How is granular urea made?

It's produced by a process of granulation, involving the solidification of urea in larger, more irregular shapes.

What distinguishes granular urea from prilled urea?

Granular urea has larger and more irregular particles compared to the small, uniform pellets of prilled urea.

Is granular urea better for certain soils or climates?

Yes, it's often better for windy or rainy conditions, as it's less prone to being washed away or blown off.

What are the environmental impacts of granular urea?

Similar to prilled urea, misuse can lead to nitrogen runoff, affecting water quality and ecosystems.

Can granular urea be used in all agricultural applications?

Generally yes, but its effectiveness can depend on the method of application and type of crop.

How does the cost of granular urea compare to prilled urea?

Granular urea can be more expensive due to its processing and handling advantages.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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