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Lawn Care Blog

Let's Talk About Early Season Fertilizer

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To maintain a beautiful and healthy lawn, you must do more than just mow and water. It doesn't matter if your turf grass is currently healthy and lush or if it is in need of some serious help. Experts agree that when it comes to Spring lawn care and maintenance, fertilization is the most helpful and productive step you can take in the next few weeks!

Grass plants need nutrients/food that aren't always found naturally in the soil, specifically Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium. Fertilizer contains some or all of these nutrients, but in different combinations and strengths. So it is advantageous to buy an inexpensive soil testing kit from your local home and garden store. The test will tell you which nutrients are low or lacking in your specific lawn. Then you can find the fertilizer that has the right ratio for your lawn. If you try to feed your lawn with food it doesn't need, you will not maximize your results. This article from Penn State University's College of Agriculture can give you more information about different types and ratios of turf grass fertilizer.

Water your lawn conservatively, after you fertilize. Light, frequent waterings are most beneficial, and your watering should not produce puddles.

Proper clean up after fertilizing is especially important, and helps to protect local streams and rivers. Michigan State University gives the following suggestions regarding lawn fertilizer clean up:

"Sweep fertilizer granules off walkways and driveways back onto the lawn. This will keep the product where it should be and prevent runoff...If you wash your spreader after use, do it on the lawn, not on the drive or walk. Maintain a buffer zone near lakes, rivers, streams and storm drains. A buffer zone is an area (minimum of 10 feet is suggested) where no lawn chemicals or fertilizers are used. Never blow or dump grass clippings into any water body."

 

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