In many areas of Florida, especially in northern and north central parts of the state, grasses go dormant in late fall and early winter. When the leaves of springtime bulbs emerge, new blades of grass soon follow. To help get your yard off to a great start this spring we’ve summarized these tips on fertilizing your lawn, as recommended by landscape experts at Golf.com.
Tips on Fertilizing
When it comes to fertilizing your yard there’s no one-size-fits-all regimen. Be careful not to make the mistake of fertilizing simply due to the time of year, or just because your grass has begun to grow again and you’re mowing and watering it, because it may not actually be necessary.
Whether or not you need to fertilize depends on factors like climate and the nutrients present in your soil. As we discussed in our previous post on lawn care, it’s best to conduct a soil test to determine your lawn’s levels of three vital nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium.
Nitrogen is responsible for the growth and coloring of your grass, and helps produce lush, green blades. There are two kinds of nitrogen fertilizers: quick release, which is soluble in water and makes nitrogen immediately available to plants, and slow release. Nitrogen can also be synthetic or organic. Too much nitrogen applied at once can kill your grass.
Phosphorous stimulates your lawn’s root growth, and healthier roots are better able to absorb nutrients from the soil—so your grass grows faster and thicker.
Potassium powers photosynthesis, respiration, and the absorption of water, and helps your grass build thicker cell walls—enabling it to endure stresses like drought, extreme heat and cold, and disease.
If a soil test shows that you need to fertilize, start with small amounts to see how your lawn responds. If it performs well you may choose to delay a subsequent application. Always remember to water your lawn properly (see our previous post on lawn care tips).