"I bet at least 3 out of every 5 homeowners use way more lawn fertilizer than they should." The first step to fertilizing your lawn, if you have not done already, is to have your soil tested. 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. “Winterizer” is a term that has been used for almost 30 years now by some of the biggest fertilizer brands. “The synthetics are able to work their way into the grass much quicker.”. 6. Encourages earlier green-up in the spring. “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. Here is a very informative video of the Lawn Care Nut showing how to evenly spread the fertilizer: How often to fertilize a lawn is also something of a matter of choice. Apply fertilizer the final time in early fall (around Labor … According to the Ohio State University Extension, “One major disadvantage of organic fertilizers is that they tend to be bulky compared to chemical fertilizers, so more pounds of product must be applied to deliver the same amount of actual nutrient.”. The trick, he says, is to “read your weeds” — figure out why your soil allows a particular weed to thrive. Amend the soil as indicated by the test. They kill beneficial microorganisms in the soil that would ordinarily be working to break down nutrients into forms the grass plants can use. With organic lawn care, homeowners expect that there will be bugs, but most of them are beneficial and feed on the pests. The benefits of fertilizing in fall have been stated by many studies, and by the research of universities such as the University of Colorado. "Grass continues to grow throughout the fall. In the early 1990s, a trio of Yale University researchers wrote “Redesigning the American Lawn,” in which they advocated for what they called “The Freedom Lawn,” a minimally maintained lawn allowing any plant to grow. And frankly, they stink — at least some of them do. Doing so keeps them green longerthrough the fall (and maybe even into the winter), and also allows them an early green-up when spring comes around. On rare occasions, it could even be early December. To do this you can break up the yearly requirements of nitrogen into an even spread over the course of the applications.Little and often tends to work more effectively than slapping a year's worth of nutrients on your lawn in one sitting, so try to aim for an even spread. We can grow without them.”. Applying fertilizer in late August or early September, however, will add nutrients that help the grass to overcome summer stresses. One way to do this is to leave your grass clippings on your lawn after mowing. Fertilizer will not benefit your grass beyond a certain point, and can be damaging to the environment when over-applied. Other tools that you need during the process include the soil tester kit, which is useful when you are first establishing what lawn fertilizer you need. With few exceptions, it’s better to let mulch grass clippings decompose into your soil instead of bagging and removing it. Organic lawn care takes a long-range view of lawn health and looks for solutions rather than fixes. Organic lawn care takes a long-range view of lawn health and looks for solutions rather than fixes. They grow most vigorously during warm weather, especially in the summer months. Deep watering encourages a deep root system and lush lawn that acts as natural weed control. Their primary function is to feed the microorganisms in the soil to make it suitable for growth. For … This is especially true in new developments, where topsoil is either removed or blended with lifeless soil dug up during the construction process. Your city or county may also have additional restrictions. Set your mower at a high setting and keep your mower blade sharp so the grass blades are cut, not torn. Get a soil test, available through do-it-yourself or mail-in kits, through local extension offices or via commercial testing services. 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. It takes a soil-based approach to lawn care, in which soil testing is the basis for making changes. One of the simplest ways to go organic is to take advantage of your natural fertilizer you are already growing: grass clippings. Additionally, you must apply a high-phosphorus water-soluble fertilizer to your annuals at least 3 – 4 times during the growing season. When to Put Fertilizer on Lawns. As far as synthetics go, “I don’t need them. You should apply winterizer when the grass stops growing in the fall, but while it is still active in the root system. It is therefore a lot more difficult to do any sort of damage when you feed your lawn organically. Once the soil is healthy, it produces a thick lawn that starves out weeds. The “Freedom Lawns,” for example, have been found to be less effective in preventing fertilizer pollution, because they develop big bare spots and allow runoff. Get easy-to-understand, actionable yard tips that will give you the greenest grass on the block. Mow high, never removing more than one-third of the length of the grass. 8. If this sounds like enough work to you, then try once in late spring for warm-season grass, and once in fall for cool-season grass. LawnStarter is a startup making lawn care easy affordable and reliable. So, no matter which category of lawn care fertilizer you use, as long as you apply it according to recommendations, you can grow a healthy lawn. “These blooms can make the water smell and taste bad and decrease its recreational value. They are homogenous products that break down in a predictable, consistent way, enabling a uniform application to your lawn. Proper lawn mowing, whether by yourself or a lawn care professional, will also encourage deep-rooted grass that won’t need a quick boost from a chemical fertilizer. Apply a slow-release fertilizer that will produce nitrogen gradually; that way your grass can use it all summer long. Lawn and garden equipment emits 5% of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the US, which cause health problems and contribute to ozone formation. The tradeoff in organic lawn care is that you give up the near-instant green-up gratification that comes with synthetic fertilizers. Itis therefore recommended that you buy a. In summary, here are the tools you need for fertilizing your lawn: top soil quality effects fertilizer uptake. Synthetic fertilizers made from natural gas exploded into agricultural use after WWII, boosting crop yields and feeding billions. The term refers to special blends of fertilizer that are designed to be applied to lawns … The problem occurs most often in hot weather, or when the fertilizer is not watered in. Feed your lawn with an organic fertilizer around Memorial Day (late May or early June).