How to Fertilize Bermuda Sod

Overview

Bermuda sod is a warm weather grass and is popular in states like Florida and Georgia. Picture a finely manicured athletic field or a professional golf course in the south. Chances are that it has Bermuda grass. To keep your Bermuda sod looking like a professionally kept lawn, you need to adopt specific care techniques including regular fertilization during the growing season.

Step 1

Begin fertilizing in the spring when the grass has turned about half green. Fertilize every four to eight weeks, with the last application in the fall. Water-soluble fertilizers are applied more frequently than slow releasing fertilizers. Follow the manufacturer's recommended number of applications and intervals of time in between.

Step 2

Choose a fertilizer high in nitrogen, as Bermuda grass thrives on lots of nitrogen. A good choice is one labeled 16-4-8. The first number indicates how much nitrogen, in percentage, the fertilizer contains. So a bag labeled 16-4-8 contains 16 percent nitrogen.

Step 3

Figure out how much fertilizer you need. According to the University of Florida IFAS Extension, apply enough fertilizer so the nitrogen equals a ½ pound for water-soluble fertilizer or 1 pound for slow-releasing fertilizer for every 1,000 square feet. For instance, a 25-pound bag slow-releasing fertilizer labeled 16-4-18 contains 4 pounds of nitrogen (25 times 0.16). Therefore, this is enough fertilizer for 4,000 square feet of Bermuda grass.

Step 4

Broadcast the fertilizer. Use a handheld or push fertilizer spreader. You can also broadcast the fertilizer with your hands using even sweeping motions. Water your lawn with 1/2 to 1 inch of water after fertilizing.

Step 5

Apply a lawn fertilizer labeled as a "winterizer" in the fall, usually in September for USDA zones 8 and cooler or in October for zones 9 and warmer. If your grass has begun to yellow, it is too late. Wait until the spring to fertilize your lawn. Adhere to the instructions on the label for correct dosing and application methods. "Winterizers" are designed to strengthen the roots and prepare the grass for winter.

Things You'll Need

  • Fertilizer
  • Spreader
  • Water

References

  • University of Florida IFAS Extension: Bermudagrass for Florida Lawns
  • Walter Reeves: Bermuda
  • Pike Nurseries: Bermuda Care

Who Can Help

  • Blades Lawn Care: Winterizer Fertilizer-Is It Just a Marketing Ploy?
Keywords: fertilize Bermuda sod, fertilize Bermudagrass, care Bermuda grass

About this Author

Melissa Lewis has been a professional writer since 2005. Her work has appeared in various online publications. A former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist, Lewis is also a script writer, with a movie script, "Homecoming," she co-wrote currently in production. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology.