Terminology can be confusing in certain fields, and gardening and lawn care is no exception. But in today’s example, the terminology couldn’t be simpler. When we discuss turf and flowerbed fertilization, we’re just talking about the lawn and garden. But we use this terminology specifically because it’s the terminology you’re going to encounter while shopping for supplies and reading about gardening tips. It’s the gardening world’s version of corporate jargon – we’re just here to help “onboard” you with fertilization (there’s a fun corporate buzzword for you!).
So what’s the key to fertilization? The same as in comedy: timing is everything.
And by turf, we just mean lawn. So when do you fertilize the lawn? Before the growing season, when your grass is in the formative stages. Additionally, you want to do this while the grass is strong enough to handle it. Fertilizer has multiple active ingredients in it that “feed” your grass, but this feeding can be stressful during the summer. When your grass is dealing with constant 100-degree days, it’s basically just hanging on for dear life. Fertilizing too much at this point will overwhelm and “burn” the grass, causing more harm than good.
When the summer is over, you should fertilize once more to help your lawn make it through the winter. Then we’ll start the whole process again next season!
When it comes to flowers, you want even less fertilizer, because they’re a bit more sensitive than your grass. You should also fertilize before the summer here, but do it after the first rains of the spring. Otherwise, that moisture is going to wash the fertilizer right out, before it has the chance to work.
Once the warm months have arrived, fertilize very sparingly (if at all). And avoid fertilizing too late in the summer – otherwise, you may end up with flowers that bloom late and inadequately.