Spring means more daylight and warmer temperatures. After a cold winter, this is the weather your grass is craving. If you’re unsure of exactly when to lay down your first feeding, you can base it off of the temperature. Ideally, the ground should be around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Depending on where you live, March to April is the best time to fertilize your lawn. It’s also best if your yard is watered a few days before you want to apply the fertilizer, whether that’s from rain or a sprinkler.
Fertilizer provides your grass with extra nutrients that help to prevent crabgrass and allow it to grow green and thick. To ensure you’re laying the feed correctly, start around the perimeter of your lawn. Then, you can start filling in the middle. Similar to mowing your yard, you should go back and forth in straight lines. And you should always use a lawn spreader instead of your hands to complete the job.
Now that you know that spring is the best time to fertilize your lawn, here are some other helpful tips that will keep your grass thriving.
How often you should apply fertilizer to your lawn
Though fertilizer has its benefits, you don’t want to overdo it. A full feeding is recommended at least 5-6 times per year. You want to feed your lawn when it’s growing most rapidly. However, you should base the frequency on your climate and the type of grass you have. For example, cool season grasses can be fertilized in late spring, but only if necessary.
Warm season grasses, like Bermuda grass, St. Augustine, zoysia, centipede and buffalo grass, should be fertilized in spring. Depending on the amount of water your grass gets, aim to reapply your fertilizer every 6-8 weeks. Keep a watchful eye on your grass. If it looks thick and green, you can probably skip the feeding. If it’s starting to look brown or black, give your lawn some TLC.
How soon you can fertilize after seeding your lawn
It’s not always after seeding that you should apply fertilizer—the best time to fertilize is right before or during the seeding process. Use a starter fertilizer with quick-release nitrogen since that will give the seeds a nutritional boost. When you make fertilizer a part of the seeding process, your grass will grow quicker and is more likely to end up healthy and lush.
Best fertilizers to use
The best fertilizers to use are slow release. When you use slow release fertilizers, the grass will get green without growing too quickly. In the spring, mixtures of 20-5-10 (nitrogen, phosphate, and potassium) are suitable to use. You can also perform a soil pH test before you start the process. Then, you can base the mixture off of your results. For example, if your pH tests come back with high potassium results, you can look for a combination that is lower in that category.