Fall Is Best Time To Fertilize Your Lawn

I normally fertilize my lawn just twice a year. I consider the fall application more important than the spring application. Anytime from now until the end of November is effective. You will see a quicker response if you apply it sooner. Fall lawn fertilization keeps the grass green all winter and into early spring. It allows you to wait until May to apply a spring fertilization. Then the spring application lasts through the summer. Since Washington law now excludes phosphorus from lawn fertilizers I now recommend a 3-0-2 balance of nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium. A typical formulation would be 15-0-10 or 18-0-12. An organic lawn fertilizer would be more like 9-0-6. The numbers do not have to be exact, but approximately in this ratio. I like to have at least 1/3 of the nitrogen in a slow release form since nitrogen is very soluble and some leaches quickly below the grass roots. The most effective slow release mechanism is coating or encapsulating some of the nitrogen with sulfur or a poly coating. There are also chemical nitrogen compounds such as methylineurea which are slow release. Check the “guaranteed analysis” to see if some of the nitrogen is slow release. The analysis label will also list iron, which is also helpful, even in small amounts. Special lawn fertilizer formulations for fall application (usually called “winterizer” blends) are also suitable. However, I usually apply the same fertilizer in both fall and spring. Liquid applications by lawn care companies do not last as long as granular fertilizer. They are satisfactory as long as they are applied more often.

If you have broad leaf weeds in you lawn, a weed and feed product is a convenient way to apply both fertilizer and weed killer at the same time. We can apply lawn fertilizer or weed and feed for you for a reasonable cost.

 

You Can Afford to Upgrade Your Deteriorated Lawn

Are you tired of your bumpy, thin, patchwork quilt of a lawn? Would you like to restore it to pristine beauty without the expense of resodding? We can renovate and upgrade your lawn to the quality of a newly sodded lawn at a small fraction of the cost of resodding.

The typical cost of removing your old sod, preparing the soil and resodding is typically $3000 to $5000 or more for a 2000 square foot lawn. Our system costs $500 or less.

Our system smooths bumpy soil as new channels for seed are created and thatch is removed. Seed is placed in these channels at just the right depth for optimum germination. A light layer of mulch helps hold moisture around the seed.

The result is a new lawn equivalent to a sodded lawn in 50 days. We guarantee it if you will promise to keep the soil surface wet for the first 30 days.

 

3 Unique New Lawn Seed Blends

We use 3 unique and exclusive seed blends which are specially adapted to Northwest growing conditions. Most grass seed blends sold in the Pacific Northwest are varieties developed for eastern and mid-western climates (because they are cheap and readily available). They deteriorate under wet, cloudy, northwest winters. Contact us for a free assessment and quote for restoring your lawn.

Plant Spring Flowering Bulbs

Now through November is the proper time to plant spring flowering bulbs such as tulips, daffodils and ranunculus. It is also a good time to plant summer flowering lily bulbs. You can also move these bulbs from one location to another. Wait another month to move lilies so the new bulbs have time to grow to full size.

I have a neighbor who has a very attractive “naturalized” bulb bed. She has planted both early and late flowering bulbs throughout the area. Crocus, snowdrops and scilla are the first wave of bloom. They are followed by several kinds of daffodils. Then tulips and grape hyacinths bloom in mid-spring. A few perennial flowers are scattered in this area to continue the color into summer.

I have found that daffodils (including the miniatures) are the easiest and most reliable spring flowering bulbs. Hyacinths have wonderful fragrance. Tulips have the largest variety of types and colors of flowers. I like Blanda anemones and ranunculus for late spring bloom.

Plant Pansies Now

If you would like color through fall, most of the winter, and early next spring, nothing does the job like pansies and flowering kale. The sooner you plant, the better plants will establish themselves before winter. Try planting a bed near your entry or where you can look at them from the back deck. Tubs and planter boxes are good locations for pansies too. You can even plant them between summer flowering annuals, so they will be established when the summer annuals are through blooming.

Fall Is Good Shrub and Tree Planting Time

September is an excellent time to plant new trees and shrubs. They have a chance to get their roots established before they have to produce a lot of leaves. Trees and shrubs can be planted all through the fall and winter months. If you want to move shrubs or trees from one location to another, wait until October or later.

 

Plant Fall and Winter Blooming Perennial Flowers

Fall aster and chrysanthemum plants are available now in bud and bloom. Hellebores, such as ‘Christmas Rose’ bloom during the winter and on into early spring.

 

Fall Weed Control Works Best for Perennial Weeds

If you have perennial weeds such as dandelion, clover, Canada thistle, ivy or blackberries, now is the best time to apply herbicides. Plants are sending food produced by the leaves down to the roots, so herbicides are transferred more quickly to kill the entire weed. Use lawn weed killers or weed and feed on your lawn. Roundup or similar products containing glyphosate are effective in areas where you can avoid spraying leaves of your ornamental plants. Roundup will not damage bark so it can be sprayed around trees. For woody weeds such as blackberry and ivy, brush killer such as Crossbow is more effective.