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How Frequently To Fertilize Lawn

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Professional Lawn Fertilization Vs Diy Lawn Fertilizer

WHEN and HOW to FERTILIZE your lawn

Professional lawn care services are an excellent option for people who dont have the time or ability to maintain their lawn or for people who are disappointed with their lawn after trying to care for it themselves. Even though its cheaper to fertilize your lawn yourself, its also easier to wind up with a less vibrant lawn if you dont know what youre doing. The difference in cost between professional fertilization and DIY fertilization is also more minor than most people realize.

How To Apply Fertilizer To Your Lawn

Lawn fertilizers are sold in either liquid or granulated form.

This is mostly important in determining how to spread the fertilizer. With organic fertilizers, the difference comes down to what the fertilizer is comprised of. Corn grain meal based fertilizers are typically granular, while fish emulsions are liquid.

Synthetic fertilizers are available in both forms.

Speaking generally, most homeowners find granular fertilizers easier to apply.

If you want to use a liquid fertilizer, it is simpler to hire a professional service like TruGreen or a local alternative to do so.

Its more difficult to measure out and ensure even application of a liquid fertilizer. Professional services do that regularly and understand how to apply it.

Using a spreader to apply granular fertilizer is a simple process. A small broadcast spreader can be bought locally or for under $40.

Using a spreader is easy fill the hopper up on pavement, then walk the spreader across your yard.

Start with the perimeter, using an edge-guard to keep the material in your grass. Then go line by line until your yard is covered.

Spread it at a lower than recommended rate at first. This way youre sure not to add too much and damage your yard .

Make sure to sweep any granules off the pavement and into your yard. Left on pavement, they can harm the environment if allowed to wash into storm drains.

The Right Feeding Schedule For Your Grass Type

Overfertilizing promotes excess leaf growth at the expense of root growth, or worse, creates an unhealthy pH and nutrient balance, and a harmful buildup of salts. Before you decide on your fertilization schedule, read your fertilizers label to find out how long its formulated to last. Some time-released formulas continuously release nutrients for as long as 12 months, and reapplying to soon leads to over fertilization.

In general, plan to fertilize two to four times or around once every six to eight weeks, applying the bulk of the lawns yearly fertilizer during its most active growth period. Your grass active growth period depends on whether its a cool-season species, such as Kentucky bluegrass or tall fescue, or a warm-season species, such as Bermudagrass or St. Augustine grass.

Spring and fall are the active growing times for cool-season grasses, so thats when youll want to provide most of the years fertilizer. In summer, when growth is slower, these grasses need little to no feeding. Warm-season grasses are most active in summer, so they need most of their nutrition between late spring to early fall. Because they slow down once the weather cools, they dont benefit from late-fall fertilization.

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Clean The Spreader And Water The Lawn

  • After youve covered the lawn, check for any fertilizer that may have scattered onto your driveway, sidewalk or walkway. Use a broom and dust pan to clean these areas. Fertilizers contain minerals that can stain concrete. You can sprinkle any small amounts of leftover fertilizer back onto the lawn after you have scooped it up.
  • Put the lawn spreader on the lawn and rinse it off with a garden hose. This allows you to make use of fertilizer thats stuck in and around the spreader. Clean the hopper plate and wheels thoroughly. Allow the lawn spreader to dry before storing it.
  • Water the lawn thoroughly with a lawn sprinkler. This will mix the nutrients from the fertilizer into the soil.

When And How To Fertilize Your Lawn

Liquid vs. Granular Lawn Fertilizer

In some ways, lawns are a lot like people. Operating at the peak of beauty and performance requires a good diet and proper care. Lush, thick, green lawns depend on properly timed, properly balanced nutrition to look and grow their best. Understanding when and how to fertilize your lawn can help you and your grass stand out from the rest.

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Should You Feed A Lawn After A Heatwave

Growing grass in hot, dry weather can be tough, and it may be tempting to give it an extra dose of fertilizer to help it bounce back to its former glory. However, this isn’t advised.

‘After a heatwave, you should avoid putting any kind of fertilizer on your lawn as this will stress it out even more,’ says Carlos Real, Lawn Care Expert and Managing Director of TotalLawn . ‘There are a few things you can apply instead to bring it back to its luscious green glory.’ One of these is a wetting agent.

‘If youre not familiar with wetting agents, they assist with the breakdown of hydrophobic areas on the surface of the soil, to promote a deeper water penetration in the soil. In other words, they help the soil retain water for longer periods of time,’ he explains. ‘There are many brands to choose from, the truth is they will all do a similar job so buy from whoever or wherever is convenient for you.’

You can also apply liquid seaweed . ‘This is a great product that you can apply at the same time as watering your lawn,’ Carlos says. ‘It will increase the biodiversity in your soil, reduce stress in the lawn, further improve water retention, and give the plant some of the nutrients it needs.’

He recommends applying this natural product every four to six weeks, adding that it can be used alongside any other feed or lawn care routine you have. And check the seaweed content before you buy, as a low content will have little effect. ‘The higher the percentage, the better,’ he says.

Where Fertilizer Fits Into Your Grass Care Cycle

Like any other plant, grass makes its own food from sunlight and water. In contrast to the plant food that you might add to potted plants, fertilizer is really meant to improve the soil.

Whether youre using natural or synthetic, the reason you fertilize your lawn is to add micronutrients that improve the soil quality and help the grass grow.

When and Where Plant Get Their Essential Nutrients

Plants tend to grow in cycles, and grasses are no different. When your lawn is in a growing phase, the grass draws essential minerals like fertilizer, potassium, and phosphate from the soil. Although sunlight and water are the basic ingredients needed for grass growth, these minerals help produce structural and functional components that keep them healthy and strong.

When Fertilizer Comes In

Before or during the next growing cycle, which may not be until the next year, youll need to add another round of fertilizer to replenish the minerals that have been removed from the soil. Thats why many species of grasses dont need frequent fertilization.

Overfertilizing is wasting money on excessive minerals for your lawn and may risk damaging it, which well go over later. First, to decide exactly when and how often to fertilize your lawn, you need to identify what type of grass it has.

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When Is The Best Time To Fertilize

Besides the season when you fertilize, the time of the day is also important. Fertilize in the morning when it is still cool and the grass is slightly damp from the dew but not wet. The grass must be dry enough when you apply the fertilizer that the granules will fall between the blades of grass and onto the soil and won’t cling to the blades, otherwise it can lead to fertilizer burn.

Keep an eye on the weather forecast, because the fertilizer should be watered in within a day or two of application. Fertilize before it rains, ideally a slow and steady rainfall and not an intense rainstorm, which will wash the fertilizer away and it will end up in storm drains and streams and pollute waterways. The alternative to rain is to water the lawn with at least a quarter inch of water after the fertilizer application.

Image by Chris Winsor

Less Grass Fertilizer More Even Distribution

How Often Should I Fertilize My Lawn?

Dial back the rate of lawn fertilizer applications to 1/2, then make two passes with your spreader at right angles.

“I bet at least 3 out of every 5 homeowners use way more lawn fertilizer than they should.”

Many retailers promote a four-step lawn fertilizer schedule for homeowners. Fertilizing more than four times a year is overkill. In fact, most homeowners could get by with two every year. You can cut back on the amount of grass fertilizer you need by knowing when to fertilize lawn based on time of year. More on that later.

If you apply too much lawn fertilizer, especially in sandy soils, a good share of it will leach through the soil and make its way into our precious groundwater, lakes, streams and wetlands. Lawn grasses only need a certain amount of food. More isnt always better.

Unlike us humans, lawn grasses dont know how to stop eating when theyre full! This luxury consumption of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium actually makes the lawn grasses weak and more susceptible to disease. Excessive grass fertilizer will create too much thatch, which will ultimately choke out your lawn. Too much lawn fertilizer also means youll be mowing far more often than necessary. Too much mowing means excessive soil compaction, exhaust and noise pollution and excessive wear and tear on your mower.

When it comes to a lawn fertilizer schedule, applying more than four times a year is a waste. Save time and money by being more judicious in your use of lawn fertilizer.

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When To Apply Popular Us Fertilizers

Below is a guide detailing how often to apply popular U.S. lawn fertilizers such as Scotts or Pennington. It also states the key features of the fertilizer. Please note that the table only lists the multi-purpose fertilizers. There are fertilizers available for specific grass types such as St Augustine or Bermuda however, the products below are suitable for all types of grass.

Please note that the table below includes Amazon Affiliate links.

*NPK = Nitrogen, Phosphorous, Potassium

Planting Grass Seed In The Summer

Its possible to grow some types of grasses in summer, but theyll need extra TLC.

Not all grass varieties are suited for planting during the hot, humid summer months. However, it is possible to grow some types of grasses successfully in summer, they’ll just need some extra care. Here’s how to set yourself up for success.

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When’s The Best Time To Plant

The best time to plant depends on where you live and the type of grass youre planting. If you live in the North and are planting cool-season grass varieties, like Kentucky bluegrass, perennial ryegrass, or fescues, the best time to plant grass seed is the spring and again in the fall. Cool-season grasses grow most actively when the air temperatures are between 50 and 80 degrees F, the soil temperature is 50 to 65 degree F, and rain is plentiful. Cool-season grasses go dormant and do not grow during hot weather, when the soil temperature goes above 65 degrees F. Since this is common during the peak summer months, planting cool-season grass seed can result in poor seed germination or even seedling death.

On the other hand, if you live in the South and are planting warm-season grass varieties, like centipedegrass, zoysiagrass, bahiagrass, or bermudagrass, the best time to seed is late spring through mid-summer. Warm-season grasses are originally from tropical areas of the world and, once established, are able to thrive in scorching sun and high temperatures. They grow most actively when air temperatures are warm, between 70 and 90 degrees F. In addition, seeds need warmer soil temperatures than cool-season grasses to germinate .

When Should I Fertilize My Lawn In Spring And Fall

How to Fix a Weedy &  Patchy Lawn

As well as knowing how often to apply fertilizer, its also key to know when to apply the fertilizer. To answer this question, it is recommended that you should always follow the instructions found on the label of your chosen fertilizer. However, following the general tips below will help you decide when to fertilize the lawn:

  • Apply when the grass is actively growing.
  • Apply when the soil is damp and the grass is dry.
  • Apply when the grass is frost-free.
  • Dont mow the lawn 3 days before or after applying the fertilizer.

Applying fertilizer outside of the period stated on the instructions as well as the guide above will run the risk of damaging your lawn so it is important to pay attention to this.

Dont apply fertilizers to your lawn during the winter months as the grass is dormant and will not achieve any better results. Applying fertilizer in the winter will increase the chance of polluting waterways by excessive run-off of the nutrients into nearby streams.

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Understanding Whats In Your Lawn Fertilizer

When choosing a fertilizer, youll need a basic understanding of the fertilizers NPK rating.

NPK rating is the fertilizers levels of:

  • Phosphorous, and

For a standard lawn, a good choice for your first application of the season is around a 20-5-10 NPK rating.

That means the fertilizer is comprised of 20% nitrogen, 5% phosphorous, and 10% potassium. Those three are the primary nutrients for grass, similar to how people need a proper balance of macro nutrients to thrive.

  • Nitrogen makes your lawn grow and green quickly, and its essential throughout the season.
  • Phosphorous promotes healthy root development. Thats why its recommended to apply high phosphorous fertilizers early in the season to help your grass develop strong roots early. If you water regularly and well, your lawns roots will be able to withstand drought and dryness in the hottest part of summer. However, Phosphorous in high concentrations is bad for the environment, so more places are regulating the allowed amounts or banning it altogether.
  • Potassium promotes overall grass growth for a healthy, balanced lawn.

Synthetic fertilizers are more potent and have higher NPK ratings, while organic fertilizers have lower ratings.

The higher potency of synthetic fertilizers is why they have more immediate results in making your grass green. However, thats also why they are unsustainable.

Synthetic fertilizers inhibit your lawns ability to fend for itself, since the fertilizer replaces its natural processes.

Whats The Best Type Of Fertilizer To Use

Not all fertilizers are created equal, and you can learn more about that by reading our quick guide to fertilizers. But in a nutshell, you want a fertilizer thats good for your soil and your busy schedule. In other words, you need a fertilizer that doesnt need to be applied multiple times a year.

Luckily for you, we have a product that satisfies both needs.

Here at Green As It Gets, weve developed a multi-purpose fertilizer, known as Pro-Gro 365. This innovative fertilizer contains organic ingredients and keeps on feeding your soil for up to 12 months. Thats right with Pro-Gro 365, you get the best of both worlds, and youll never again have to ask the question, How often should you fertilize your grass? Pro-Gro 365 answers that question with one simple feeding. Whats better than that?

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Best Times To Fertilize A Lawn

The right time to fertilize your lawn is influenced by the type of grass you have. Much of the country has either cool-season or warm-season grass, with some areas combining the two types for a more versatile lawn. Its important to identify your grass type and plan your lawn care schedule around its needs. Below is a quick overview of which seasons are best for fertilization based on your lawn type.

Identifying Your Grass Type To Choose A Grass Seed

Fall Lawn Care | Aeration, Overseed, Starter Fertilizer, Milorganite FUN!

Before fertilizing or reseeding your lawn, you need to know what grass you have. Most regions have either cool-season or warm-season grasses, although some have a combination of both.

All lawns need nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium to grow, but the amounts of each vary depending on the type of grass you have. Getting the correct fertilizer for your grass type will make a big difference.

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How Often Should You Put Epsom Salt On Your Lawn

Some homeowners like to use Epsom salt as a natural lawn fertilizer in the spring to facilitate lush green growth. Epsom salt contains magnesium, which is key to seed germination, chlorophyll production, and improving the uptake of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur.

To try this method, add 2 tablespoons to each gallon of water used on the lawn. If you have a sprinkler system, lightly sprinkle the salt directly atop the grass and then allow the system to water it into the sod.

How Much Fertilizer Should I Use

In order to determine the right amount of fertilizer to apply, you first have to measure the area of ??the soil to fertilize. Fertilizer recommendations will vary depending on the amount of nitrogen a lawn needs per year, the type of turf and the area. Different types of herbs need different amounts of nitrogen to stay vigorous and healthy.

In Quebec, as a general rule, it is recommended applying about 1.25 kg of nitrogen and 1.25 kg of potassium per 100 m2. Therefore, you just have to calculate the area of ??your land to determine the amount of fertilizer to apply. It is very important to pay attention to the over-fertilization because it can damage your lawn and make it more vulnerable to pests .

If you have any doubts about the amount of fertilizer to use, do not hesitate to contact us and we will be pleased to give you an estimate.

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