How to Know When to Start Fertilizing

  • Written by: Killingsworth Environmental
  • April 14, 2017

When To Fertilize For the Perfect Green Lawn

As we move into spring, there are a couple of questions we are frequently asked about lawn care and maintenance. One common question is how to know when to start fertilizing your lawn for the new season to get the perfect green summer grass. We’re going to really dive into this answer.

Don’t Start Too Early

First, you need to know what kind of grass you have and understand its particular needs.

Contrary to what you might assume, you can fertilize too early, which will throw off your whole lawn care program. Just like flowers, some grass will not grow appropriately if the climate still feels like winter.

Rather than fertilizing at the end of winter, it is better to wait until the early spring like April or May. This way you ensure that the cold will not be a problem with your grass growth, and you will have water to help the fertilized grass thrive before the heat of summer begins.

When cool season grasses ‘wake up’ in the spring, they enter a natural growth cycle where the root system begins growing. They then get into survival mode during the heat of the summer and should be left alone for the summer – you don’t want to stress your lawn.

Warm season grasses, on the other hand, thrive in the heat and can be fertilized throughout the growing season.

Preparing Your Lawn

Raking Any Snow Mold

After the winter months, you might notice ‘snow mold.’ This is when grass is stuck under snow or matted leaves for a long time and creates a moist environment that fungus thrives on. Lightly rake the grass where the snow was piled for much of the winter to give your lawn air circulation down into the turf and dry out the area to reduce damage.

After raking, it’s time to do some research to find out your grass type and what kind of nutrients it needs from your fertilizer.

Testing Your Lawn

To find out your grass type, we would recommend running a test in the soil to see what your grass needs. You might find that it needs phosphorus and potassium, which are important. But, more importantly, you will need to pay attention to the nitrogen levels.

As always, we are happy to help where we can. For professional help, check out our lawn care services. If you’re ready to tackle your lawn but aren’t sure where to start download our free Lawn Care Workbook!

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