Getting the optimal lawn is the holy grail of the common suburbanite. Although many think it easy to get that great color and growth from grass, it can prove difficult in certain areas without good fertilizer and proper weed control with herbicides and home remedies.
Fertilizers are needed to provide growth-inducing nutrients. Nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium are the three main requirements for a lush and green lawn. These three nutrients are represented by the numbers on a bag of fertilizer, with nitrogen first, phosphorus second and potassium third. These numbers are percentages by weight.
Apply fertilizer according to weight. 1 lb. of nitrogen for every 1,000 square feet of lawn is recommended for optimal grass growth. Calculate the weight according to the nutrients by weight in your fertilizer, weight of the bag of fertilizer and the size of your yard.
Slow-Release and Fast-Release
Two varieties of fertilizer are available--slow- and fast-release. Fast-release promotes a fast growing period, commonly inducing your yard to grow very green. This type of fertilizer is good for growing new lawns and can be used when the soil is cold in the early spring. Unfortunately, this fertilizer may cause thick patches of grass to grow throughout the yard.
Slow-release will give you more uniform grass growth and has less nutrient loss through air and soil seepage. These fertilizers can be applied twice a season but are quite a bit more expensive.
Weeds grow well in large, open areas, where there is little competition for resources with turfgrass or other plants. Part of proper weed control is a good garden design that utilizes light properly for your grass, while choking off weeds. To save money on herbicides, regularly hand-dig weeds when they do appear.
Plan Your Garden
Plant turfgrass in areas where there is good drainage, and it is free of quack grass. Quack grass is an aggressive weed that will quickly take over your lawn. Poor drainage in soil is bad for turfgrass, while weeds can grow without effort. Aerate your yard to prevent the death of your healthy grass. Mow frequently to promote growth of your grass and get rid of weeds.