Lawn and grass care is not simply regular mowing and weed pulling, it requires proper fertilization and the application of lime, in some cases, to balance the soil's pH. Soil pH determines a plant's ability to grow. Soil that has a high pH, 7.0 or above, is considered alkaline, while soil with a pH of under 7.0 or under is deemed acidic. The addition of lime and fertilizer to the soil raises its pH, making grass, which enjoys a pH of around 6.5, much happier.
Test your soil with a home pH kit. Take soil from the lawn and mix it with a cup or two of water, until it is a brownish liquid. Pour the contents into the pH kit and add the pH testing formula. The soil will turn a color that can be compared to the side of the pH test to determine pH.
Apply lime to soil that has never been treated with lime at 50 to 75 lbs. per 1,000 square feet in loamy soil, and 70 to 125 lbs. for heavier soils such as clay.
Spread a nitrogen-rich fertilizer along the lawn, such as 30-30-30 fertilizer, at 2 to 3 lbs. per 100 square feet. Work the fertilizer into the dirt with a rototiller ff the lawn is new and no grass is planted; otherwise, spray the lawn with a soft stream of water, about an inch of water to sink the fertilizer into the soil.