When it comes to fertilizing your garden lawn some people have unfounded fears, we will cover some very basic tips and mistakes people often make and how you can avoid them in our how to lawn fertilizer guide to getting the perfect healthy lawn that is less susceptible to weed growth.
Fertilizing your garden lawn is nothing to fear you just need to follow some very basic steps and you will get a thick healthy lawn, it’s easy to make mistakes and I have seen some over the years and they are common but if you follow our guide below then you will not go wrong.
Too much Fertilizer
If you are using a seed spreader and I recommend you do use one as you will get a much better spread, to see the best take a look at our guide of best spreaders here. Dial back the rate on the spreader the most common problem people have is that they will go far too heavy on the spread its bets to give a light coating and reapply if needed.
Applying to much lawn feeder is like sprinkling money over your lawn as your lawn only need a little feed to get some great benefits, the bigger issue is with overfeeding is that the grass will not use the feed which will allow it will then soak thought the soil into the groundwater this is bad for the environment as this water is what feeds the rivers and lakes.
Unlike us humans crass do not know when they are full and when it’s time to stop eating, the grass will take as much as the fertilizer as is possible can this is not a good thing as too much of a good thing just for us humans is not always the best thing this is the same for grass. The luxury makeup of the fertilizer makes the grass weak and more susceptible to diseases when overfed.
Too much lawn fertilizer will also produce much more thatch that will ultimately choke out your grass, with overfeeding your grass will grow at a much faster rate so this means a lot more mowing that is unnecessary and will put a lot more wear and tear on your mower.
Pick the correct time when to lawn fertilizer
When lawn fertilizer is the most common question I think I am asked when people are asking me about fertilizer and I always say it depends I know that a bit ambiguous but I will explain.
Each gardener will have their fertilizer schedule, this should never be based on when the fertilizer is on sale or when you have time (so anytime you can be bothered) you should have a set window when you will carry out the fertilizing process.
My schedule is early spring and then summer this schedule is working great with my lawn and my thinking is that I feed the lawn after a long hard winter to give the grass a boost then the summer fertilizer will give the grass a nice boost to take on all the heat that it will have to cope with over the coming months.
I recommend Scotts Turf Builder you can get an individual fertilizer that best suits when you will be applying the fertilizer so if you have misses early spring they will have one that will suit the season that you are in.
This is the schedule that works for me it doesn’t mean it has to be your schedule, Scotts Turf Builder offers four different types of fertilizer early spring, spring, summer and fall you can if you wish to apply each one, but as we know we don’t want to overfeed so if you feel this will be best for you each time you give your lawn a feed only give it a really light feed at each stage.
Give your lawn a good drink
A few days before you are going to apply your lawn fertilizer then it is recommended that you water the grass, this will make the soil and grass more accepting of the fertilizer that you will apply.
Giving your lawn watering once the lawn fertilizer is applied will also help keep the grass nice and healthy we have put together a DIY lawn sprinkler system guide that should help you set one up to keep your grass and flowers in tip-top condition.
Pick a spreader
We touched on this a little above but its recommended that you use a spreader to apply your fertilizer, the first task is to fill the hopper don’t forget to close the hopper.
We recommend a broadcast spreader this type will be better for most homeowners, a broadcast spreader is much easier to use and as they spread the fertilizer wide it’s much less likely that you will end up missing parts of your lawn. An added benefit is that broadcast spreader has is in most cases cheaper than other types of spreaders
If you have a small garden lawn then we recommend a hand broadcast spreader these are much more suitable for people with a small lawn to cover that want to fertilize there lawn.
But witch ever spreader that you choose to use remember to walk at a steady pace across the lawn and try your best to cover as much as the lawn as possible.
We have put together a guide on choosing the best spreader.
Clean up stray fertilizer
It doesn’t matter how careful you are if you are spreading next to a sidewalk or patio you are more than likely going to get some spillage onto the sidewalk or patio.
We don’t want small animals eating the stray fertilizer granules also its much more likely that they will be washed into the drains which will then enter our streams and lakes we must think of our environment and clear up.
Once you have completed the fertilizing process you should put any granules you have leftover in the hopper back into your back for use on your next feeding, it is advised that you keep the bag well sealed and in a cool dry place.
Don’t do this
Here are some things that you should never do when it comes to fertilizing your lawn.
If you have water features don’t apply fertilizer near this as if it enters your water feature then the high nutrient in the feed will create access weed growth and algae blooms.
Never apply fertilizer in the winter months or when there is a chance of frozen ground this will allow the granules to run off the lawn and wash into drains and we don’t want this.
Why fertilize your lawn
Is there any point fertilizing your lawn? Yes is the simple answer, if you want your lawn to be the envy of your road you will struggle to achieve this without a lawn fertilizer.
When you see a thick dense grass lawn the chances are that the person is giving their lawn a feed at least once per year as it’s very difficult to achieve this without a feed. The lawn fertilizer has nutrients in it that feed your lawn giving it a boost to produce thicker healthy grass giving you a beautiful lawn.
The reason I suggest that you purchase Scotts Turf Builder that suits the season that you will be spreading it in is that they put all the correct nutrients into the mix that best suits the season you are in.
Do I need to know fertilizer numbers?
Have you read you need to know what the nitrogen, phosphate, and potassium mean to get the correct fertilizer for the season? This could put anyone off tackling the task in hand. To some extent this is correct but another reason why we recommend Scotts Turf Builder as they have made this very easy for us as they break each fertilizer into the season and they have the perfect nitrogen, phosphate, and potassium blend for the season you need taking the hassle out of the process.
So that should have you pretty much covered when it comes to how to lawn fertilizer it’s not too difficult and as long as you keep in the back of your mind to not overfeed and don’t feed on the frozen ground you will not go wrong.
Here are some key points that will make the process a lot easier
- Water a few days before applying fertilizer
- Pick the Scotts Turf Builder fertilizer that suits the season
- Don’t overfeed the lawn
- Use a lawn spreader for better coverage
- Give the lawn a regular water
- Clean up any stray fertilizer granules
If you have any more questions don’t hesitate to contact us and we will do our best to answer your question we will add it to the blog as it may just help other as our aim for the blog is to help others with their gardening.