How Do You Know How Often To Fertilize Lawns
There are several important factors that come into play when youre trying to understand lawn fertilization frequency. These include:
- Lawn fertilizer application times
- The type of fertilizer you use
- How you apply your fertilizer
- How frequently you water your lawn
Ill discuss each of these points in some detail below.
Using A Handheld Broadcast Spreader
A handheld broadcast spreader works well for fertilizing small lawn areas. Walk evenly and slowly, and be sure to overlap distribution patterns slightly with each pass. A small spreader like this also works really well when you have shady areas in your lawn that require a different fertilizer rate than the sunny sections. Some fertilizers combine an herbicide with the lawn food. These products are sold as weed-and-feed lawn care products and are applied using a lawn spreader.
When Should I Apply Scotts Crabgrass Preventer
For established lawns, early spring is the right time to apply Scotts crabgrass preventer. But if you just seeded your lawn or you are planning to seed, adjust the application time to ensure the herbicide doesnt stop your grass seed from taking root, since the product will stop different kinds of seeds from growing.
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How Soon Can I Fertilize My Lawn
The warmer spring days have sprung and the grass is beginning to green up, so when should you apply fertilizer? Dont get caught up in the early spring fever rush, because fertilizing too soon can be a waste of time. Fertilizer is generally composed of three different nutrients: nitrogen , phosphorus and potassium . The recommended rate for spring fertilizer is 1lb of nitrogen per 1000 square feet. Different blends and products determine how long the application will last, how often it needs to be applied, and even how to apply it .
When Should I Fertilize My Lawn After Seeding
Now that your grass has been seeded and you have your new regular fertilizer, how soon should you use it? As much as you might want to encourage growth and hurry the process along as quickly as possible, its best to wait before re-fertilizing your new grass.
How long? At least four weeks, and possibly as many as eight.
If you give in and re-fertilize too early, the nutrients will not be absorbed by the roots, and you can have runoff that, as we already mentioned, can make its way into the water supply or harm water-dwelling creatures. Moreover, over-fertilizing can actually leach more nutrients from the soil, leaving a deficiency of nutrients when your new turf is finally ready to be replenished.
Save yourself frustration and possible contamination: do not re-fertilize early. After this, you can adhere to the following regular annual fertilization schedule:
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Is Liquid Or Granular Lawn Fertilizer Better
Liquid fertilizers also have less salt content, which is usually why liquid fertilizers are usually better for starter fertilizers. Granular fertilizers contain a lot more salt content, and roots tend to steer away from granular fertilizers for this reasonespecially if theres a lot of nitrogen and potassium.
Do I Really Need To Fertilize My Lawn
However, most soils are not capable of supplying all the nutrients turf grass requires during the growing season, despite their capacity to fulfill some nutrients. The growing of healthy and active grass requires a lot of energy. The act of putting tyle promotes new leaf and root growth, thereby maintaining the health of your lawn.
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Understanding When To Apply Fertilizer
I recommend fertilizing your lawn four times annually with an organic, slow-release lawn fertilizer.
Your first application of fertilizer is best applied early in the season when grass has just started to grow.
This gives your grass a boost of nutrients early to help it take root and green up very quickly. When applied with a good pre-emergent herbicide , you allow your lawn to crowd out annual weeds every single year.
The rule of thumb is to apply your first batch of fertilizer when your soil hits 55-degrees Fahrenheit.
Usually, you can tell when the soil reaches temperature when lilacs bloom and grasses begin to sprout.
For more assurance, you can get a lawn thermometer at your hardware store or garden center, or you can buy one online .
Can You Fertilize Your Lawn Too Much
Its very easy to fertilize your lawn too much. Fertilizing your lawn with too much fertilizer in one application or not allowing enough time between applications, leads to three problems.
As long as you follow the instructions found on the packaging of the fertilizer, the three problems above can be easily avoided.
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How Often Should I Fertilize A New Lawn
Dont fertilize a new lawn until the grass is actively growing and you have mowed the lawn at least three times. Then use a fertilizer that will promote strong roots without a surge in grass growth while keeping the lawn weeds at bay.
For U.S. based gardeners, fertilize your lawn with Scotts Turf Builder Starter Food for New Grass Plus Weed Preventer .
U.K. gardeners should use a lawn fertilizer such as Miracle-Gro EverGreen Premium Plus Weed Control Lawn .
These fertilizers will slowly release nutrients into the lawn. You will only need to apply these once every 12 weeks while the lawn becomes established.
Its also worth mentioning that if you apply a crabgrass preemergent fertilizer or a regular weed and feed, ensure that you have waited four weeks before sowing your new grass seed.
Should I Fertilize My Lawn In Winter
During the winter months, grass is likely dormant if you haven’t been irrigating. When you fertilize too early in springmeaning it’s still winter you’re providing nutrients before the grass has broken dormancy. It won’t be able to immediately take advantage of the nutrients you provided.23-Feb-2019
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Is It Too Late To Fertilize Your Lawn In November
The exact timing on when to fertilize varies based on weather conditions and your climate zone however, the final fertilizer application should be done sometime in November in most regions. This is the point when the grass has stopped growing or has slowed down to the point of not needing to be mowed.
Feeding The Lawn In The Summer And Fall
Warm-season grasses thrive in the heat of the summer and can be fertilized throughout the growing season. However, cool-season grasses are in a survival mode during the heat of the summer. Refrain from applying fertilizer to a lawn in mid- or late-summer if you live in a climate where cool-season grasses are in your lawn seed mix. A cool-season lawn should need nothing other than water and pest management until September.
Most lawn experts recommend a mild dose of a “turf-builder” fertilizer formulation in the early- to mid-fall, while the turf still has several weeks of active growth before dormancy. This application will help build robust root systems going into winter and restart the growing cycle in the spring. You are not looking to return your lawn to the green of summer. Heading into winter, you can expect a natural slowdown of your lawn’s growth and the loss of its green luster.
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When Should I Fertilize My Lawn In Seattle
When soil starts to grow roots in September, there are several important reasons for using a seed or fertilizers. Use May to encourage grass growth rather than January. Having a soil test could help you to find out whether your foundation is faulty. The spreading of lime every 3-4 years will certainly be beneficial to lawns across the board.
What Type Of Fertilizer To Choose For Your Lawn
There are several varieties of fertilizer to choose from. The biggest variable is organic versus synthetic fertilizer.
That said, youll also hear fertilizer described as either quick-release or slow-release, but theres significant overlap between the two.
Organic fertilizers are natural and come from plant or animal sources.
Synthetic fertilizers are derived of components made in a lab.
Organic fertilizers are primarily slow release. In practical terms, slow-release fertilizers help develop your soil to grow your grass strong using its own capacities. Synthetic fertilizers are more potent, and they help your grass green up faster, but they dont help your soil.
In my experience, relying too much on synthetic fertilizers can weaken the soil so much your grass cant sustain itself without applications of synthetic fertilizer.
For me, thats a problem.
Its not sustainable, and its why I use organic, slow release fertilizers on my lawn.
That said, synthetic fertilizers have almost immediate results. If you want your grass green quick, its the option to go with, and I do recommend a quick-release starter fertilizer when starting a lawn from seed.
If you want long-term sustainability for your existing lawn, an organic slow release is a better choice, and my recommendation.
Theres also the option to apply a synthetic fertilizer as your first application, then apply organic fertilizer to strengthen your yard later in the season.
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Apply Your Fertilizer When Grass Is Growing
No matter how frequently you fertilize your lawn, the rule of thumb you should follow is that you should apply fertilizer while your grass is growing the fastest.
Over applying fertilizer runs a big risk to your yard:
- Its bad for the environment, since runoff pollutes local streams.
- It runs the risk of burning your grass, which is when you sap grass of natural nutrients causing it to brown.
- Lastly, youre wasting money by buying too much fertilizer.
How Often Should I Fertilize My Lawn
Lawn fertilization has its benefits, but your lawn can have too much of a good thing. You dont want to overdo it.
Generally, lawns should receive a full feeding five or six times per year. A grass fertilizer with nitrogen is most effective when your lawn is already growing.
There are no silver bullets for fertilization. Keep a watchful eye on how the grass is growing. Thick, green grass likely already has all the nutrients required. Its possible to skip a feeding, in this case.
If the grass is starting to look brown or black, it can still be saved, but youll need to offer some extra TLC.
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What Should You Use
Thats a tough question, isnt it? Most people think theres one type of fertilizer and thats what we should all use. Well, its not exactly that way. Most bags of fertilizer will have three letters on it and a number next to each one: N, P, P Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium. Simply put, the first is for healthy growth, the second for roots and stems, and the third one makes your garden resistant to drought and disease.
For a strong, green lawn, youd want a high nitrogen concentration in your fertilizer but not so much that the other two components are overlooked.
How should you do it?
There are two ways you can go at it: liquid or granular fertilizer. Each one is good for something and bad for something else. Lets see each one:
Liquid fertilizer: It acts faster, cheaper, and easier to use. Itd be perfect if it wasnt for its unique drawback if you use too much of it, you might end up burning your soil. You also need to apply it more times than granular which might make it possible youll use too much without knowing.
Granular fertilizer: It needs to be used fewer times and its safer than its liquid counterpart. On the other hand, it takes a little bit longer to act and its a little bit more expensive. Regardless of its drawbacks, its the go-to choice for most homeowners.
Is there such a thing as too much fertilizer?
This seems like too much work, is there an alternative?
Enough about fertilizer, what else am I missing?
Apply Grass Fertilizer Correctly
Now you’re ready to apply. Feeding the lawn is as simple as mowing it, and as easy as walking at your normal steady pace. Just follow these guidelines for easy application and even coverage.
If youre using a broadcast spreader, feed the entire perimeter of your lawn first. Engage the side-shield, which blocks off one side of the spreader to keep the product on the lawn and out of gardening beds and off driveways and sidewalks. Next, fill in the middle by turning off the side-shield feature and walking back and forth in straight lines. To get even coverage, overlap slightly on each pass by moving over 2 steps before you begin the pass.
When using a drop spreader, start by applying 2 header strips at opposite ends of the lawn to create a turning area. Next, fill in the rest of the lawn by applying the fertilizer back and forth in straight lines perpendicular to your header strips. To ensure you get even coverage, be sure to overlap the wheel tracks by about half a foot .
After youve finished feeding your lawn, return any unused product to the bag and store it for future use.
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Let Abc Nurture Your New Grass For You
Does implementing a year-round fertilization schedule sound like a lot of work? It can be if you do it all on your own. Plus, there are many ways that you can make a mistake, which will put you right back at square one. Avoid these problems by letting ABC Home & Commercial Services do the hard work for you. Our professional lawn care technicians have been keeping lawns all across the south looking their best for generations, and we can help your yard, too. Schedule a service today.
Do I Really Have To Fertilize My Grass
Of course, you dont have to fertilize! But youre probably going to want to.
Well, lets talk about what lawns need in order to grow and stay healthy and green. Namely, nutrients.
These nutrients can come from organic matter and minerals that are already in the soil. This nourishment can also be derived from fallen leaves, grass clippings and the like.
The sad truth is that the soil in large parts of Texas and other parts of the south isnt all that nutrient-rich, and theres probably not enough naturally-occurring organic matter to make up the difference in most cases.
The impact of these types of soil on your lawn? More insects. More weeds. A higher chance of disease, including yard fungus. Increased chance of erosion. Your grass might thin. Youll suffer patchiness and increased runoff.
Basically, all kinds of bad things that you dont want.
Fertilizer can provide the additional nutrients your yard needs to prevent these problems and keep your grass healthy and looking good.
Unfortunately, fertilization isnt as simple as deciding to do it and picking up some fertilizer from your nearest home improvement store. You have to know whats best to use. When to use it. How often.
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Want To Feed And Weed At Same Time
Main manufacturers of weed and feed products claim they kill as many as 175 weeds, including dandelions, clover, chickweed, knotweed, thistle and many broadleaf weeds. These products also encourage grass greening and can extend nitrogen feeding.
Some combination products target crabgrass. To avoid fertilizing done too early but still manage crabgrass, purchase a product only meant for crabgrass control. Pre-emergent herbicides must go on before crabgrass seeds germinate. Not everyone needs crabgrass control, however. Thick lawns reduce light penetration to the soil surface, shading crabgrass seeds and preventing their germination.
To be effective, granules of weed-and-feed products must stick to the leaves of the weeds. That step requires moisture. The perfect time to apply, therefore, is an early morning when theres a heavy dew on the lawn. Whether using a granular weed-and-feed or spraying a liquid broadleaf weed killer, the weeds must be well watered and actively growing for the chemical to work.
Picking The Right Fertilizer
Picking the right fertilizer depends on your lawn type and your end goal is. If you want to make your lawn greener and healthier, a product like The Andersons 16-0-8 Fertilizer with Humic DG is great for you. It contains methylene-urea that will give your lawn an even feed over eight to 10 weeks. Its also safe for pets.
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Best Time To Fertilize Lawn
Fertilizing in the morning allows the soil to take in the most nutrients, soak in the morning dew and take advantage of cooler temperatures. Thats the best time. Do not apply fertilizer on an abnormally hot day, not even in the morning. Wait until the weather cools back down to a normal temperature.
You can mow anytime after fertilizing with a granular treatment. With a liquid treatment, wait a day or two.
Best Time To Fertilize Your Lawn
Spring means more daylight and warmer temperatures. After a cold winter, this is the weather your grass is craving. If youre unsure of exactly when to lay down your first feeding, you can base it off of the temperature. Ideally, the ground should be around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Depending on where you live, March to April is the best time to fertilize your lawn. Its also best if your yard is watered a few days before you want to apply the fertilizer, whether thats from rain or a sprinkler.
Fertilizer provides your grass with extra nutrients that help to prevent crabgrass and allow it to grow green and thick. To ensure youre laying the feed correctly, start around the perimeter of your lawn. Then, you can start filling in the middle. Similar to mowing your yard, you should go back and forth in straight lines. And you should always use a lawn spreader instead of your hands to complete the job.
Now that you know that spring is the best time to fertilize your lawn, here are some other helpful tips that will keep your grass thriving.
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