When it comes to lawn care, watering or mowing on their own will not give you a lush green lawn. To maintain a green and healthy lawn, fertilizer is the key ingredient. Many people do not pay attention to fertilization. Either they are unaware of its benefits or lack the knowledge about how and when to apply fertilizers.
Don’t worry; your ultimate guide to lawn fertilization is here!
How to identify that you need to fertilize
Grass starts showing signs of nutrient deprivation clearly. You might have observed discoloration in the grass in the form of brown and yellow spots. The grass may also start thinning or growth becomes slower, in addition to weeds growing everywhere.
If you’ve come into contact with any of the above, you should consider a fertilization treatment. The best way to determine the fertilization treatment that’s best for your lawn, is by testing your soil. With the help of testing kits available at mostly every home and garden store, you can check the nutrients that your soil needs.
Best fertilizer for your lawn
Choosing the right fertilizer might seem difficult but it can be simplified if you know the right numbers. Any commercially available fertilizers focus on three nutrients: Nitrogen (N), Phosphorous (P), and Potassium (K).
Nitrogen is the primary nutrient that encourages leaf and shoots growth. Phosphorus takes care of root growth and development. Potassium is responsible for disease resistance and making the grass drought and cold tolerant.
These fertilizers display the nutritional content in the order N-P-K. If you see a package with 20-5-10, it means it contains 20% nitrogen, 5% phosphorus, and 10% potassium. Pro tip, this ratio serves as a good mix for the spring season.
Since most people focus on grass growth, you will find fertilizers with nitrogen in the highest number. But if you are preparing your lawn for winter or establishing a new lawn, you can choose a fertilizer with higher phosphorus and potassium.
Fertilizer application tools and techniques
Now that you have the right fertilizer, the next step is the application process. This requires the right tools and techniques.
There are two major tools used for fertilizer application: Lawn Spreaders and Lawn Sprayers.
Lawn spreaders are used for slow-release lawn fertilizers which gradually release nitrogen into the soil. A solid pellet is scattered all over the lawn and can take up to several weeks to be absorbed by the soil.
Lawn sprayers are used for liquid fertilizers. The liquid fertilizer is delivered as a spray or mist resulting in immediate nitrogen release.
You cannot just spread the nitrogen all over whenever you feel the need. To achieve the best results, there are few preparations and the right techniques to do so.
First, you need to water your lawn with one inch of water three days before fertilizer addition. The agenda behind the three-day gap is to keep the grass dry but the soil should be moist. The fertilizer will easily penetrate the moist soil and will not runoff.
The next step is the fertilizer application. You can start by covering the perimeter of the lawn. Then move across going up and down followed by going left and right in two rounds. Please ensure that the entire area is being covered properly because you would not want to leave any patches.
Right time for fertilization
Fertilization can be planned in one to three applications throughout the year. These applications can determine your lawn quality.
For instance, the entire treatment can be applied once in every fall which gives a low-quality lawn. One application in early fall and one in early spring will result in a mid-quality lawn. To get the high-quality lawn, you will have to apply fertilizer in early fall and early spring along with one application in the late fall.
Please take care of a few things during and after this. Check weather conditions a night before fertilizer application. Wear proper clothing to not come in contact with the chemical directly. Wait for at least 48 hours before walking across the fertilized lawn
Watering your lawn
As mentioned above, you can once water the lawn three days before fertilization. Once the fertilizer is applied, water your lawn with one-fourth inch of water. This will wash any excessive fertilizer off the grass and introduce it directly into the soil.
Then, you can maintain a regular watering schedule but do not go overboard. To avoid overwatering, keep a check on the grass and ensure that it is dry before watering.
Fertilization can do wonders for your lawn. With the above-mentioned techniques, you can make your lawn stand out in your neighborhood. As they say, things last if you take care of them. It is time for you to take good care of your lawn to keep it healthy throughout the year. Follow the steps and sit back making beautiful memories with your kids and family.