Homemade organic lawn fertilizers are a practical and responsible alternatives to store-bought synthetics. Many household waste products and ingredients can be used to produce a healthy, beautiful lawn. Although natural fertilizers do not have the same quick result as synthetic fertilizers, they generally take longer to break down, nourishing the grass over a longer period and improving the soil quality.
Epsom salts are made of the natural mineral magnesium sulfate. By itself or dissolved in water, Epsom salt is an excellent soil additive because it provides soil with the useful trace chemicals sulfur and magnesium. When combined with other ingredients, however, it becomes even more useful. Blend 2 cups of water, 1 cup dark beer, 1 cup Epsom salt and 1 cup ammonia to create a fertilizer that will aerate and nourish the turf. Apply the fertilizer evenly to the yard with a hose-end sprayer. One batch should cover 400 to 600 square feet.
All Purpose Fertilizer
Steve Solomon from Mother Earth News offers an excellent all purpose fertilizer that can be used for lawns and crops. Mix by volume 16 parts of seed meal, 1 part of finely ground agricultural lime, 2 parts of dolomitic lime, 2 parts of ground gypsum, 2 parts of kelp and 4 parts of bone meal. Fertilize the lawn lightly at the very beginning of the growing season, using about 4 quarts of the fertilizer per 100 square feet. Use a broadcast, drop or other type of garden spreader to distribute it, then water the lawn to help the fertilizer sink in.
For those with a strong stomach and a commitment to growing healthy, organic grass, the Organic Lawn Guys propose tea fertilizer. Cut a 3- by 3-foot square of burlap and place about 5 quarts of manure in the center. Alternately, put the manure inside a burlap sack. Carefully fold in and tie the four corners of the fabric together, forming a sack. Place the sack into a 5-gallon bucket, pour in 3 gallons of water and put the bucket out in the sun, preferably downwind. Allow the fertilizer brew for about a week. Remove the sack and discard it. You now have "tea" fertilizer. Dillute it with water to a concentration of 1 cup per gallon and spray it evenly over the lawn.