Best Organic Fertilizer For Yards With Flowers And Vegetables
Passionate gardeners with yards that mix stretches of lawn with beds of flowering plants and vegetables swear by Wiggle Worm Soil Builder organic fertilizer. Its made from pure worm castings, aka vermicast or earthworm waste.
This nutrient-rich product includes elements that are absorbed immediately, as well as slow-release elements that feed your turfgrass, flowers and other plants over time. One of Wiggle Worms biggest selling points is that its odor-free, so you can even toss a small handful on your indoor potted plants for an extra boost.
How Do I Treat My Lawn Organically
The underlying philosophy behind organic lawn care is this: healthy, chemical-free soil begets robust lawns that can virtually take care of themselves.
After years of being inundated by chemicals to fend off grubs, eradicate weeds, and green up the turf, the natural capacity of the soil to perform these tasks itself has ceased operation, practitioners say. Cut it off from the chemicals cold turkey, and you’ll get things running againnaturally.
And once the soil’s healthy, you might never have to deal with pesticides, herbicides, even fertilizers again. “That’s the thing about going organic,” says Eileen Gunn of Beyond Pesticides, a Washington, D.C., nonprofit group. “Not only do you get a nice, safe, healthy lawn, it is also a more sustainable one over the long term.”
The Best Organic Lawn Products
Our product brands include: Richlawn Turf Foods, Pro-Rich Turf Foods, Natures Cycle Fertilizer, Richlawn Winterizer, EKO Compost and soil mixes, Natures Yield soils, Gro-Rich fertilizers and Garden Soil, Second Harvest Mulch and Earth Essentials soil amendments. Our products include natural chicken manure based fertilizers, winter lawn food, organic soil amendments, pet-friendly grass and lawn fertilizers and we continue to develop new products to help you. In addition, we produce custom-blended fertilizers for golf courses and other professional users all around the U.S. Much more information about each organic lawn fertilizer and product is available as you explore the website.
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Best Practices For Organic Lawn Care
Over the years, a series of best practices have emerged for organic lawn care. Most of them are good practices no matter how you fertilize.
1. Grow the right grass. Getting a mixture of grasses well adapted to your region will mean the grass wont have to compete as hard to succeed.
Before you plant new grass seed, lay down grass sod or overseed an existing lawn, be aware that your grass seed choice will in part set your fertilizing needs. Kentucky bluegrass, for example, is a cool season grass that demands more fertilizer.
2. Get a soil test, available through do-it-yourself or mail-in kits, through local extension offices or via commercial testing services. Amend the soil as indicated by the test. After the initial test, turf experts say you may skip the test for a couple of years unless theres a reason to believe something has changed.
If your soil is lacking organic matter, you may need to add a topdressing of 1 to 2 inches of quality compost, or a compost-sand mix, before seeding. This is especially true in new developments, where topsoil is either removed or blended with lifeless soil dug up during the construction process.
3. Aerate. Over time, soil can become compacted. Aeration with a core aerator will improve the soil to reduce that compacting and make room for new grass roots. Try to aerate when the soil is moist but not drenched the corer can reach deep into the lawn, and make several passes over the lawn.
Organic Lawns Require Less Water Than Chemically Treated Ones
When it comes to conserving water, the good news is that organically-cared-for lawns require less water than chemically treated ones, since the latter needs lots of moisture just to digest all the synthetic fertilizers and pesticides fed to them.
As with any lawn, the key is to water infrequently and deeply, encouraging turf to send down deep roots and making it less susceptible to drought and disease.
The best time to water is early morning, since it gives your lawn plenty of time to absorb it and dry off in the sun. Most lawns require about 1 to 2 inches of water per week in summer. Use a rain gauge to measure how much water your lawn’s getting and make sure your sprinkler water isn’t being wasted on your driveway or street.
With a little patience and a slight change in thinking, you’ll be rewarded with a handsome lawn that’s easier on the earth-and on your conscience. “The best thing is that I now have total peace of mind about my yard,” says Libby Scancarello. “I want to put a little sign out front that says ‘Chemical-free,’ so my neighbors can see for themselves just how nice an organic lawn can be.”
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Use Organic Lawn Fertilizers
Organic lawn fertilizers are another effective way to give your lawn an occasional boost during the growing season. Available at most garden centers, the best organic lawn fertilizers contain natural ingredients such as seaweed for potassium, bone meal for phosphorous, and feather meal for nitrogen.
Unlike conventional fertilizers, which deliver a heavy, instant dose of synthetic nitrogen for your lawn to binge on, Turkey says organics provide an easier-to-handle diet of nutrients that are released more slowly.
The thicker your grass, the more easily it can crowd out weeds. So once your soil’s been treated, overseed the lawn using an appropriate turf grass . Choose a seed mix that suits your climate, sun/shade conditions, and moisture needs, and make sure it blends well with your existing lawn. Water daily until new growth is established.
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Breaking Down The Nutrients
The main job of lawn fertilizer is to offer your lawn the nutrients it needs. There are certain nutrients that different fertilizers offer that serve unique purposes.
Nitrogen is one of the most common promises of lawn fertilizers. This element is best for plant growth and development.
This is also an important factor in promoting a vivid green coloring to your yard. This will give you the bright, healthy appearance youre looking for.
Then, theres phosphorus. This is an important element for root growth but many organic fertilizers use viable substitutes.
The final major element included in fertilizers is potassium which is sometimes referred to as potash. This aids in root development and increases resistance to disease and drought.
Lawn fertilizers often include a variety of secondary nutrients as well. This can include calcium, oxygen, carbon, sulfur, and more.
Safer Brand 9334 Lawn Restore Fertilizer
This bag of lawn fertilizer covers approximately 6,250 square feet of grass and has an NPK ratio of 9-0-2. It contains no chemicals and is derived from natural products such as alfalfa, feather meal, and blood meal. It aims to improve lawn conditions by strengthening root systems and promises to make lawns greener within 3 to 5 days of application. It also suggests that with consistent use, lawns will be better able to withstand seasonal changes, becoming more tolerant of heat, cold, and drought. As a natural formula, this lawn fertilizer states that it is safe for use around children and pets when used as directed.
Users of this lawn fertilizer offer vastly different reviews based on their experience of it. Some say it is easy to use, while others say that the inconsistency in the size of the product makes application difficult. Many users comment that granules differ in size from pea-sized pieces to dust-like molecules, so using the feed in a spreader is almost impossible. Users also witnessed drastically different results, with some appreciating the improvement in the color of the grass, and others not seeing any noticeable difference.
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Superior Nitrogen & Potash Natural Liquid Fertilizer
This formula from Basic Lawn Products is a perfect alternative for someone who likes liquid fertilizer. It is perfect for routine maintenance but works very well with lawns that display a nitrogen and potassium deficiency.
Nitrogen and potassium combined with humic/fulvic acid are the main ingredients in this recipe. This combination boosts grown and color while providing the nutrients required for good, solid development.
This method is ideal for use for all forms of grass like Bermuda, Zoysia, Palmetto, and Bluegrass. This 32-ounce bottle treatment up to 3200 square which is spread with a clear garden hose that is connected to the bottle correctly.
Since no harmful chemicals are involved, this drug wont stress or damage your grass. It fits well for sandy soils, and can even enhance severe temperature tolerance. This drug is healthy for children and livestock and is manufactured and distributed in the United States.
Synthetic Lawn Fertilizer Disadvantages
But overuse can lead to fertilizer burn, particularly with fast-release, water-soluble formulations. Fertilizer burn leaves grass plants scorched, turning yellow or brown due to the presence of nitrogen salts. The problem occurs most often in hot weather, or when the fertilizer is not watered in.
Their runoff is bad for bodies of water. These nutrients have been linked to eutrophication, a biological process in ponds, lakes, and streams where excessive seasonal algal growth occurs,according to Purdue University Agronomy-Turf Science researchers. These blooms can make the water smell and taste bad and decrease its recreational value. In severe cases, the algae deplete oxygen levels, which may kill fish.
They kill beneficial microorganisms in the soil that would ordinarily be working to break down nutrients into forms the grass plants can use.
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How Do You Feed Your Lawn Organically
If you want to feed your lawn organically, youre in the right place. One of the first things you should do is switch to organic fertilizer.
From there, you can also switch your lawnmower to its tallest height setting. Cutting grass too low can damage it.
Sharpen the blades on your mower too. By cleanly and effectively cutting your grass, youre saving it from a lot of damage.
Finally, try topdressing with compost. This actually helps to add a lot of nutrients to your lawn.
Picking The Best Organic Lawn Fertilizer For Your Yard
The one thing all of these organic lawn fertilizers on our list have in common is being child-safe and pet-safe. Hopefully, our article and guide help you pick out the very best one for you and your lawn.
At any rate, our overall best pick is Espoma LS7 Organic Lawn Fertilizer. This stuff is made by one of the most respected brands in the business and will definitely give you a greener yard. That said, it does take a bit of time for results, and it does have an odor to it.
If you arent into organic, after reading through this guide, why not have a look at our top picks for the best lawn fertilizers in general?
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Natural Alternative Late Spring Fertilizer
Finally, we suggest this Safe Replacement Fertilizer. It is a solution exempt from phosphorus and is all-natural and herbal.
Slowly and gradually, this product feeds your lawn with rich microbes and other ingredients that fuel the soil to create a healthy, lush lawn.
This 20-pound container spans over 6,000 square feet and is a good choice for near streams, waterways, and other bodies of water since it does not contain any phosphorus.
The application is easy and uses a balanced spreader to ensure that you distribute uniformly. Using 3 pounds per 1000 square feet for existing lawns. When applied to a freshly planted grass, ensure that the fertilizer is raked into the soil before seeding.
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What Organic Lawn Care Is
Heres what organic lawn care is:
- At its simplest, organic lawn care is managing your lawn without pesticides or synthetic fertilizers.
- It takes a soil-based approach to lawn care, in which soil testing is the basis for making changes. Were taking a feed the soil approach as opposed to a feed the plant approach, Osborne says. If you are using an organic fertilizer you are feeding the microbial life in the soil with that fertilizer and then that microbial life is breaking it down to the form the plant can use, and you are building that biomass. The soil, in turn, feeds the plant.
- It requires giving up on the idea that a lawn is a monoculture of one single grass species and that your lawn will be completely free of other life.
- Organic lawn care takes a long-range view of lawn health and looks for solutions rather than fixes. For example, if crabgrass shows up, the conventional treatment is to apply a synthetic pre-emergent weed killer in the early spring every spring. The organic approach is to encourage a healthier lawn so that crabgrass gets crowded out.
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Purely Organic Lawn Food
Next is this Strictly Organic Lawn Stuff. For years, the major sports stadiums have used this brand to maintain their playing fields green and lush. Now, straight into your own backyard, you will have the same feel at school.
If you want organic goods, something important about this fertilizer that you would particularly enjoy is that it is natural. Instead of enabling food waste to remain in landfills, Purely Organic refines and mixes it to produce an effective and inexpensive all-natural fertilizer.
It operates by nourishing your lawn from the inside out to give your lawn more nutrients. You may use it as much as you like and your yard is often less likely to be overrun by weeds as it supports dense balanced growth.
This 25-pound bag occupies a size of 5,000 square feet. Application is simple and convenient, and after completion, there are no limitations until you can reach the lawn again. There is no waste and there is no bad scent plus it is comfortable and welcoming to families.
Why Use Organic Fertilizers
As homeowners become increasingly aware of the impact of their choices on the environment, many are opting for chemical-free lawn care to keep their grass robust without introducing potentially harmful substances into the soil and water.
One element of natural lawn is the use of organic fertilizers, which add vital nitrogen , phosphorus and potassium macronutrients to the soil via natural rather than synthetic ingredients. Some of the most common compositions include alfalfa, cottonseed or corn gluten meal rock phosphate cow or poultry manure compost earthworm castings bone or feather meal or even seaweed or kelp.
Organic fertilizers offer multiple benefits but also a few drawbacks:
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Is Organic Fertilizer Safe For Pets
Although organic fertilizers are usually derived from more natural plant and animal byproducts, its important to note that some organic fertilizers are still not safe for pets and can cause harm.
Make sure you are careful about reading labels and apply your fertilizer in areas where your pets cant access them yes, even if youre using an organic fertilizer! You can read more about fertilizers and other lawn care products and their risks for pets here.
What Is An Organic Lawn Fertilizer
Organic are fertilizers, which consist of plants, animal waste products, and industrial waste. Manure, compost, straw, bird droppings, sawdust, silt, and peat belong to the natural top dressing. Organic fertilizers, as well as minerals, contain calcium, phosphorus, nitrogen and other nutrients. However, the natural top dressing improves the condition of the soil, saturated with useful substances. Mineral fertilizers only affect the lawn grass, without affecting the soil.
- The ability to increase soil fertility, regulate acidity
- The ability to accelerate the photosynthesis of lawn grass
- Increased access of air and water to the roots of plants
- Creating a favorable environment for beneficial soil bacteria.
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When Should You Apply Organic Fertilizer
The best time to apply organic lawn fertilizer will vary depending on the type of grass you are growing. Usually, regardless of the grass type, you will need to apply fertilizer several times throughout the year and particularly during the growing season.
A warm-season grass like zoysia, Bermuda, or centipede needs to be fertilized two to four times each year, ideally at the start of spring and the end of the summer as well as several times throughout the summer months.
Cool-season grasses, on the other hand only need to be fertilized right after the lawn comes back after being dormant over the winter as well as at the beginning of the fall. Unlike warm-season grass, cold season grass should not be fertilized during the summer.
For all kinds of fertilizer and grass types, do so first thing in the morning or at the end of the day, in the evening. This will prevent your grass from burning in the hot summer sun.