Nothing gives your home a classic finish than a spectacularly done lawn. Not only does it contribute to the aesthetic beauty of the home, but also creates a great spot for outdoor activities.
But, a superb lawn does not come easy. It takes great maintenance effort. A key component of maintenance is to add fertilizer. Just as you need good nutritious food to grow and remain healthy, so does your lawn.
Fertilizer adds to the soil critical ingredients needed for growth and sustenance of grass. One of the crucial nutrient introduced is nitrogen. With a proper fertilizing schedule, you can be sure of high performing beautiful lush green lawn.
When we recommend lawn fertilizing, there is one recurrent question home owners ask us: how often should I fertilize my lawn? Today we delve deep into this matter and tell you all you need to know.
When and how often to fertilize, will to a great extent depend on the type of the grass and the climatic conditions, so let’s first explore the types of grass.
Types of grass.
Generally, grasses are classified into two major categories depending on the climatic conditions it thrives.
Cool-season grasses. These are the grasses that experience rapid growth in the cool seasons, i.e. winter and fall and go fairly dormant in the warm seasons. They do well in environments with temperature between 60-750F. Fescue, rye, bluegrass and bentgrass are some examples.
Warm-season grasses. These types of grasses grow rapidly in warm seasons (summer and spring) and go partially dormant in the colder seasons. They include: buffalo, centipede, Zoysia, Bermuda, St. Augustine and Bahia. Such grasses do well in temperatures of between 800F and 950F.
When and how often to fertilize.
Grass should be fertilized just before its active growth period so that it gets sufficient nutrients to sustain the growth. This makes fall and spring the primary feeding times, though you also fertilize at other times. But, avoid fertilizing grass during the seasons it is naturally dormant, your effort will go to waste.
When to fertilize cool & warm season grass?
Cool season grass should be fertilized during fall. This will supply the soil the needed nutrients in preparation for the rapid growth expected in winter. On the other hand, warm season grasses are fed during spring, which equally prepares it for the rapid growth in summer.
How to space grass fertilizing?
Space up the feeding well to ensure consistent growth, such that when the nutrients are almost used up give a boost with additional fertilizers. A spacing of six to eight weeks during the active growing months is perfect.
However, for a well maintained lawn you may not need all too frequent fertilization. Otherwise, if a lawn is not well maintained you may be forced to fertilize more frequently, but be sure to follow the advice of your landscaping consultant.
Why you should avoid over fertilizing your lawn
There are good reasons why experts advise you not to overfeed your lawn. Apart from destroying the environment, increased disease and weed problem, it may result in the rapid growth of fickle grass that may not withstand any adverse weather condition.
Also, the type of fertilizer you use will determine the frequency of application. Opt for the slow-release fertilizer which releases nitrogen and other nutrients slowly into the soil, making it effective for a longer time eliminating the need for frequent treatment.
Proper timing is very key too. If applied too early or during the dormant season, the fertilizer could only serve to promote the growth of weeds. Also, avoid scheduling for lawn fertilizing in the intense heat of summer as it only weakens the lawn.
As you consider fertilizing, check the weather conditions. Avoid fertilizing when it’s about to rain, the rain could wash away the nutrients before it has had the intended impact on the grass. Apply the fertilizer on a clear day, then gently water the lawn to wash off any fertilizers from the leaves of the grass.
Meet the Author
Greetings, I'm Oliver! My love for garden and DIY projects started since I was in my twenties. Wonderland Gardens is my 'digital land' where I talk about everything garden and home improvement.Learn more