Fertilizing Your Lawn

Landscaping, Lawn Care

By Evan Rivers

Many questions come to mind when thinking about fertilizing your lawn. What kind of fertilizer should I use? When should I apply it? How much should I apply? Do I need to use a “Weed and Feed” product? We’re here to answer some of those questions.

Types of Fertilizer

There are many natural and synthetic fertilizers available today.

Examples of natural fertilizers include Milorganite, compost and manure. These organic products must first be broken down by microbes in the soil, then they begin releasing nitrogen and other important nutrients to the plant.

Synthetic fertilizers are man-made. They use inorganic compounds from petroleum industry byproducts. They are water soluble and can be absorbed by the plant almost immediately.

Applying organic fertilizers feeds nitrogen & nutrients to the soil. Alternatively, applying synthetic fertilizer feeds the plant.

Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of each type of fertilizer:

table comparing organic and synthetic fertilizers

*Table provided by Clemson University

The type of fertilizer you choose will be based on your budget and the properties of your lawn. A lawn care professional can help guide you in the right direction based on the needs of your property.

Tips for Fertilizer Application

soil and plant

Test your soil

How do you know what type of fertilizer will work best for your lawn? A soil test is very helpful in determining exactly what your lawn needs to look it’s best. Read more about soil tests here.

Less grass fertilizer, more even distribution

Most do-it-yourselfers who fertilize their lawns make the following mistakes:

  • They use too much fertilizer. This can overpower the soil and become counter productive.
  • They don’t distribute the fertilizer evenly. This can produce inconsistent results throughout the lawn.

Fertilize at the right times

Different types of grass have unique schedules for fertilizing. See the schedule provided by Clemson Extension for more information on when you need to apply fertilizer throughout the year for your grass. In other words, one size doesn’t fit all. It’s important to follow a schedule that’s backed by research.

What About Weed and Feed Products?

“Weed and Feed” products are heavily marketed as an easy way to fertilize your lawn, and they also claim to get rid of weeds. This sounds like an excellent idea, but it’s not always ideal especially for Centipede grass. Timing for weed control and fertilizing simply don’t match up. Therefore, you can actually do more harm than good if you apply these products at the wrong time.

Professional Fertilizer in South Carolina

As you can see, fertilizing your lawn involves answering many questions you may not know the answer to. However, being an expert on lawn fertilization isn’t as important as simply having a thriving yard. Rivers Lawn & Landscape can guide you through answering these questions so you don’t have to. Contact us today for guidance through the lawn fertilization process.