Even before I owned my own yard, I knew watering and mowing a lawn were important. After all, I’d been responsible for doing both sometimes for my parents. However, one thing I don’t remember them doing was adding lawn fertilizer to our grass so our yard would really thrive. Considering what I know now, I’m probably thankful. Otherwise, I would have been mowing a lot more often. Now that it’s my yard I understand how important knowing how to fertilize your lawn is.
To understand how to fertilize your lawn you must first know how to read the labels. The most important thing to look at on those labels is the combination of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium they contain. You’ll see three numbers on the label which give you this information. Look for a combination such as 24-12-10. That combination means 24% of the fertilizer is made up of nitrogen, 12% is made up of phosphorus, and 10% is potassium. Each of these elements plays an important role in grass health. For example, nitrogen contributes to that rich green color we all want to achieve with our lawns.
You should also read the label to learn exactly how to apply the lawn fertilizer and how much you will need for your yard. That means don’t go to the hardware or garden store without knowing the size of your yard. You don’t want to make another trip after you’ve been fertilizing all day. Believe me, I learned that lesson the hard way.
Another part of knowing how to fertilize your lawn is knowing the difference between the two main forms of lawn fertilizers available: granular and liquid. As the names imply, liquid fertilize comes in a liquid form and is sprayed onto the yard, usually through an attachment to your garden hose. The liquid form absorbs quickly and acts fast but is hard to distribute evenly. On the other hand, the granular type if spread onto the yard. After application, you’ll need to thoroughly water your lawn to aid the absorption of the lawn fertilizer into the soil.
When you’re trying to decide how to fertilize your lawn, remember that you don’t want to overdo it. Too much of even a good thing can have negative results. That’s especially true if you’re using non-organic fertilizers. These chemicals often contain a significant amount of salt which can play havoc with your soil’s pH and can literally make your soil infertile after long periods of use. That’s one reason why I always choose organic lawn fertilizers. They are also safer for the environment.
Fertilizing should usually be done twice a year, preferably at the beginning of spring and at the beginning of fall. Just be ready for the results. Your grass is going to grow at a phenomenal rate and that means more mowing. During the late spring and early summer, I usually have to mow twice a week instead of once a week. Remember that you do still have to keep your lawn at a healthy height so consider hiring a lawn mower to assist you if necessary.
Even though you may need to spend more time mowing, the results of learning how to fertilize your lawn and using lawn fertilizers will be a thicker, greener, and healthier lawn that your entire family can be proud of and enjoy.