Every homeowner wants a lush green lawn that is healthy, pest-free, and attractive. But to keep it at its best, it needs to be fed the right amount of nutrients at the right time. Over-fertilizing your lawn causes nitrogen and salt levels to rise, eventually killing your grass. However, under-fertilizing can deprive it of essential nutrients and cause barren patches, more weed growth, and an increase in pests.
How Many Times Should You Fertilize Your Lawn?
It is recommended to fertilize your lawn 4 to 6 times a year with a gap of 4-6 weeks between each application. But this rule is not set in stone. There are many factors to consider before deciding when to fertilize your lawn. These include –
- Type of turf grass – There are two types of grasses, warm-season grass, and cool-season grass.
- Warm-season grass – Preferred season to apply the year’s first fertilizer is late spring, the lawn’s peak growing season. This grass is mostly grown in the southern states of the US. You should also apply fertilizers every 4 to 6 weeks in the summer when the grass is actively growing again. In the fall, fertilize it at least 6-8 weeks before the first frost. Some examples of warm-season grasses are Zoysea, Ryegrass, Bermuda, and Buffalo grass.
- Cool-season grass – Cool-season grasses grow best between 60 to 75 degrees temperature. This type of grass is mostly found in the northern states where the climate is generally colder than the rest of the country. Fertilize your lawn in early spring and early fall, which are both active growing seasons for this grass. You should also fertilize it in late fall, at least 6 weeks before the first frost. Examples of cool-season grasses are – Fescue, Kentucky, bluegrass, and Perineal bluegrass.
- If it’s a new lawn – If your lawn has been newly seeded, you need a starter fertilizer to nourish it well for healthy turf growth. Apply the fertilizer at least 4-6 weeks after the seeds germinate. Once the lawn is established, fertilize it as you would a mature lawn.
- If it’s a mature lawn – Fertilize your lawn 4-6 times a year starting in early spring when the soil is at 57 degrees Fahrenheit, and the lawn is at its peak growing season. Leave 5-6 weeks between every application. The last fertilizer application should be made at least 6 to 8 weeks before the first frost of the season.
- If you see brown spots or an increase in weeds – One of the reasons for this is the lack of soil nutrients, namely nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium (NPK) in the correct ratio to grow well. Do a soil test and add fertilizers or soil amendments as required. If needed, get lawn professionals to evaluate the cause of the problem and rectify it.
Keep Your Lawn Looking Great with the Right Care by the Pros
A lawn needs constant care and attention to keep it healthy and green. The decision about when to fertilize depends on various factors, including weather conditions, the type of grass, how well established your lawn is, and the ratio of NPK in your soil. Let Greenskeeper help you plan your lawn care regimen and expertly handle all the tasks involved in keeping it healthy.