Take Your Vitamins

Your lawn and other plants need water, air, and nutrients just like we do.

Unless you have naturally perfect soil conditions, your plants probably need supplements to make sure they're getting the nutrients they need to grow healthy and strong ... just like your momma told you. Soil is different everywhere and so will be the supplemental nutrients YOUR plants need and when and how often you apply these. The primary macro nutrients in fertilizers are NITROGEN, PHOSPHOROUS, and POTASSIUM.

The standard fertilizer label shows these as N-P-K or with numbers like 5-10-5. These numbers are the percentage of each nutrient in the bag. You can calculate the volume of each nutrient in the bag by multiplying this number by the total weight of the bag. Your lawn likely requires a certain yearly volume of each. 

For example, nitrogen is the most important nutrient to keep your grass green and healthy. The following table suggests the annual volume of nitrogen per 1,000 sqft of lawn. CAREFUL - TOO MUCH NITROGEN WILL BURN YOUR LAWN (note that this is typically the problem for those yellow spots where dogs always pee--which is high in nitrogen). Be sure to use SLOW RELEASE rather than QUICK RELEASE nitrogen.

You'll want to apply fertilizers every 6-8 weeks during your peak growing season. For warm season areas, apply from late spring to early fall; for cool season areas, apply in the spring and in the fall but avoid applying during the heat of the summer months. Note that the mix of nutrients you should use changes during the year--e.g., more nitrogen in the spring and more potassium in the fall--but check with your local garden center for the proper mix in your area.

Apply to wet grass and immediately run a sprinkler cycle.

Good for earth. good for earthlings.

  • Test your soil to know what nutrients to apply and how much--don't over apply. 
  • Use slow release fertilizers. 
  • Don't bag grass clippings, which will return nutrients to the soil and reduce fertilizer use by up to 25%. 
  • Do applications only during proper months.
  • Keep your lawn well aerated with exiGrow (alkaline soil) or with traditional core aeration (acidic soil) to increase absorption.
  • Use exiGrow to solubilize minerals already in the soil for plant consumption, increase absorption, and optimize soil pH (grass is best able to absorb and use nutrients at soil pH of 5.5-6.5).
  • Avoid runoff of fertilizers into storm drains that pollute water systems.
  • Note that the more you fertilize, the more grass grows, and the more water your lawn requires (and the more frequently you need to mow).

Enjoy a Beautiful, Healthy Lawn

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