Lawn Fertilizer Reviews
Choosing the right fertilizer for your lawn can be a real challenge especially if you are just starting out and don’t exactly have a clue what to use. However, when it comes to choosing lawn fertilizer products, there are three important elements that are needed for the proper growth of your lawn and plants. These are: hydrogen, oxygen and carbon.
While these nutrients are readily available in the environment, there are also certain nutrients that are not readily available to plants especially those that do not exactly stay long in soil and need to be replenished on a regular basis.
Each of the nutrients contained in lawn fertilizers have a critical role to play in the overall health and survival of your plants. By applying fertilizers, you can be sure these nutrients are available to them.
Among the important macronutrients among plants include phosphorus, nitrogen and potassium. Secondary nutrients that are also required include magnesium and calcium but both in lesser quantities. You should also check for boron, copper, manganese, cobalt, chlorine, zinc, nickel and molybdenum to complete your list.
Lawn Fertilizer Buying Guide
Most of us want to have the best looking yard possible. Lawn care is made easier with the use of landscaping professionals, but hiring out can be an unnecessary expense that can easily be avoided. Most lawns require periodic use of fertilizer to achieve the best results. Choosing the best fertilizer for your lawn can be a challenging task until you discover what it is that your lawn truly needs to thrive and have a healthy appearance. For those of you who are in the process of learning how to determine which products are the best, we’ve prepared this guide that will provide you with all of the information that you need to make the best choice with confidence.
How Fertilizer Helps Your Lawn
Fertilizer helps to provide the required nutrients in the soil that plants, including lawn grass, need to successfully grow. Three of the elements that are vital include carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. In addition, there are other nutrients, which are quickly depleted from the soil that require replenishing. This is accomplished through the application of fertilizer.
Macronutrients including nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium come in second behind oxygen, carbon and hydrogen, but are still important. Secondary nutrients such as magnesium and calcium are not as important, but smaller amounts can give your plants the boost that they need. Micronutrients including manganese, cobalt, copper, iron, chlorine, boron, molybdenum, zinc and nickel complete the nutritional checklist to ensure that your lawn is receiving all of the nutrition that it needs to thrive. These are the ingredients that a high quality fertilizer should contain. Read more about how to apply lawn fertilizer.
Different Types of Fertilizers
The two main types of fertilizers are granular and liquid. Liquid forms act very quickly as they are absorbed into the plant. These are usually purchased in a concentrated form that you dilute with water and apply every 2 to 3 weeks. They may either be applied with a watering can or hose end sprayer.
Granular fertilizers are sprinkled on the surface of the ground by hand for smaller areas or with a mechanical spreader for larger areas. They are used in a dry form so will require watering after they are used. Granular fertilizers are divided into two different classes. Quick release fertilizers usually last for 3 to 4 weeks before any additional applications are needed.
This type is water soluble nitrogen and is good for any general fertilizing use. Slow release granules are water insoluble nitrogen fertilizers which are intended for specific uses. They come in either sulfur coated with lasts for around 8 weeks or polymer coated with lasts for up to 12 weeks.
Different Types of Lawn Fertilizers
Your lawn has changing nutritional needs at different times of the year. Here are a few tips for helping you to select the right fertilizer formulation that will help to encourage the establishment of new grass and to keep it healthy throughout the seasonal cycles.
Starter Fertilizers and Winterizers
These mixtures are recommended for new lawns and as they are heavy on phosphorus to encourage healthy root growth. For the last fall application, a winterizer that is also heavy on phosphorus will provide nutrients for root preservation during the winter months.
Weed and Feed
Fertilizer formulations that are known as Weed and Feed mixtures contain weed killers in a dual purpose mix that kills broadleaf weeds while nourishing lawn grass. This is useful for helping to eliminate noxious weeds such as crabgrass and dandelions. When a weed and feed product contains post emergent weed killers, they are intended for weeds that are already present and can be seen. Those containing pre-emergents are intended for killing weeds at the germination stage, but do not kill weeds that have already broken through the ground.
What to Look For In Lawn Fertilizer
The bags that contain the fertilizer are clearly marked with a set of three numbers. The numbers represent, in this order, the amounts of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium that are included in the fertilizer. The numbers are known as the NPK. These are the main ingredients. Nitrogen helps in the development of leaves and for producing a healthy green color. Phosphorus promotes root growth and Potassium or potash also assists root development and helps plants to become more disease resistant.
The numbers represent the percentages of the given nutrient, so you will know which ingredients are predominant. This is helpful in choosing a mix that will either promote more leaf growth, green your grass or reinforce the root system. Inert ingredients are necessary for helping to distribute the fertilizer, so don’t be alarmed if there is a fairly high percentage in the bag. This does not lessen the effect of the other ingredients and it can actually be beneficial in preventing chemical burn.
In the event that weeds become a problem, the application of a weed and feed blend will help to eradicate any broad leaf weeds such as dandelions, which can become a nuisance. Look for weed and feed products that are formulated to kill the types of weeds that you see most in your lawn grass. In most cases, these are clearly indicated on the bag.
Lawns require very specific formulations with include nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus. There are different mixtures that serve a variety of purposes for lawn health. Fertilizers that are intended for other plants may not work as well for grass, so when shopping, look for the fertilizers that are specifically designed for use in lawn care.
Even if your lawn looks green and healthy, it is important to remember that grass has the need for nutritional elements that may initially exist within the soil, but may be fairly quickly depleted. Replenishing the nutrients is accomplished through the application of the recommended formulation of lawn fertilizer. You now have the information about what your lawn needs to maintain good health throughout all seasons of the year. By following the simple tips included in this guide, you are prepared to choose the lawn fertilizer that will work best to promote optimum lawn health.