Lawn Fertilizer Tips

Gardening Tips
Healthy Lawn Fertilization

When you want to apply fertilizer to your lawn there are some rules you should follow to succeed in your efforts. Here are some quick tips on how to fertilize your lawn in a safe and effective way.

Here are the most important tips for applying fertilizer to your lawn:


You should never distribute more than 1 pound of nitrogen per 1,00 square feet of lawn at one time. Make sure not to exceed this dosage.

Dry Foliage

You should distribute the lawn fertilizer only when the lawn foliage is dry. When the leaves are wet, they have a thin film of dew on them. It will hold the fertilizer so plants may suffer a serious burn as a result.


After you have applied the fertilizer, water your lawn as throughly as possible. It will wash the fertilizer off of all the foliage and make it to the ground. It will penetrate the ground, where you need it. It will be become available at once to the plant roots.


The best time to fertilize your lawn is immediately before an afternoon shower. It's best to apply dry-granular or liquid fertilizer when it's not too hot. Morning or late afternoon is usually the best time to apply fertilizer. However, if you have a very small lawn, liquid fertilizer may not be the best choice at all. In this case, you should use other types of fertilizers.

Uniform Distribution

The most uniform distribution on a small lawn area, or where a lawn fertilizer spread can't be done (or doesn't work), it's best to divide the total amount you wish to apply in half. Distribute the half of fertilizer by walking north and sout and the other half by walking east and west.

If you want to distribute a fertilizer uniformly on an irregularly-shaped area, you should block off a 10 foot square area. Apply one-tenth of the amount fertilizer needed for 1,000 square feet, following the methods described above. After this, proceed to apply the corresponding amount to the remaining of the lawn.

Hydrated Lime?

In case you want to apply hydrated lime to your lawn before fertilizing (which is not recommended), you should wait at least 2 weeks between applications of lime and fertilizer. You need to give your lawn some time to rest. If you don't do it you may get a chemical reaction between the lime and the inorganic carriers of nitrogen. It will make you lose your nitrogen as a gas into the air, which will burn your grass.

This risk is not involved when the ground limestone is used. However, the results tend to be much slower. Liming the lawn doesn't take the place of feeding the lawn, so it's one thing you should keep in mind.

Liming is used to control soil acidity and improve the physical conditions of the soil. It's often done too much, especially on city lawns. You shouldn't lime your lawn unless it's absolutely necessary for good grass growth on your lawn. Before you do it, you should get a soil test to check its pH.

Photo credit: Oregon State University

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