Fertilizer is the most vital key to achieving a healthy-looking lawn, but this is also the most overlooked part of home lawn care. Many do not have the time, and some are not aware of the right type of fertilizer to use in their lawn. If you want to provide your grass with the proper nutrients that it needs, then this article can help you by giving useful tips that are very simple to understand for a homeowner like you. The most important question is when to fertilize the grass lawn, here are helpful yet straightforward answers.
Know the Right Timing
When to fertilize grass is during spring season when the temperature of the soil reaches 55º Fahrenheit. How can you determine the soil temperature? It is when grasses start to grow and lilac blooms. If you do not want to guess, you can buy a soil temperature and use it anytime you need it. Fertilizer application usually begins in the middle of April. Accuracy is essential for fertilizer application to ensure that soil can benefit from it.
Know-How to Read the Numbers
Once you shop for fertilizer, you will notice a series of numbers on the packaging. Usually, there are only three numbers written on the label. It would be best to become aware that these numbers represent the percentage of essential nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphate, and potassium in order. If you saw numbers like “20-5-10”, it means that the bag has 20% nitrogen, 5% phosphate, and 10% potassium. All fertilizer also contains some filler that is useful to apply it around the lawn evenly. When to fertilize grass using 20-5-10 is during the spring season.
Consider Slow-Release fertilizer
The right timing when to fertilize grass is very crucial for slow-release fertilizers. The reason is that it takes a longer waiting time before its next application. This one is a preferred type of lawn fertilizer, especially for busy homeowners. After the application, you need to wait for six to eight weeks before its next application. An ideal percentage of nitrogen is 1/10 of a pound per week for greener grass, but too much will make your grass grow faster. When it happens, then you need to mow often.
Consider Using Granules
Besides knowing when to fertilize grass, it is also imperative to find out the right type of fertilizer. Some agree to use liquid fertilizer, but this is only for professional landscapers as they use a tanker truck that can spray it evenly around the lawn. If you do not have the money to hire one, it is wise to use granulated fertilizers because of its ease of use and application.
Go for Max of 3 Applications
The right timing when to fertilize grass for the first time is during spring until the middle of April or once the soil temperature reaches 55º Fahrenheit. You can ask the help of a local University Extension Office to provide you with the current soil temperature within your area, but you may again use a soil thermometer.
The second feeding is best done four weeks right after the first application, which is around the middle of May. After the second feeding, you can feed every 6 to 8 weeks. It is best to use other organic material for the third feeding like manure or compost. One of the most critical phases of fertilizing is during fall as grass and roots continuously grow, so they need enough nutrients from the soil. There is fall fertilizer with a higher amount of phosphorus and potassium that is vital for the root system.
Do not forget to Water
Homeowners with an automatic sprinkler system need to fertilize their lawn every six weeks, but you can add two more weeks before applying for those without one. The idea is the more water, the more fertilizer the grass needs. Water promotes faster growth of grass and roots, so they require more fertilizer. Also, carefully read labels to know if you need to water the lawn before or after the soil feeding.
Avoid Over Application of Fertilizer
All fertilizer has an application rate on the label, but professionals suggest using half of it. Begin by applying around the lawn perimeter, then fill the middle and work using one direction. This way will make sure of an even distribution of fertilizer. Over application of fertilizer can burn and kill the grass and the root system. It is also better to update yourself with the weather forecast before application because a heavy downpour will wash away all fertilizers.