Nitrogen-rich fertilizer is a must for healthy lawns, and a 35-10-10 fertilizer is an appropriate choice for keeping your grass growing and green. However, dosing your lawn with this high-nitrogen formula at the wrong time -- such as during the dormant period, when your grass needs rest -- can encourage growth when it's not necessary. On the other hand, feeding your lawn with 35-10-10 lawn fertilizer during its active growing period keeps it lush and healthy all season.
Active Growth Periods
A fertilizer with a 35-10-10 ratio of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium is a smart choice for your lawn, because grass needs more nitrogen than other nutrients. The nitrogen is responsible for lush green growth, which makes the nutrient most necessary during your lawn's active growth period. For warm-season turfgrass, this active growth happens in summer; for cool-season grasses, the growth period is during the cooler months of the year, such as autumn and spring.
Typical Fertilizer Schedule
Two doses of nitrogen-rich 35-10-10 fertilizer helps keep grass green while it's growing. Typically, this means warm-season grasses require the fertilizer in June and August, while cool-season grasses need it in autumn and again in late spring or early summer. While the nitrogen supports the lawn's green growth, the other nutrients support root development and metabolism, which are also key to your lawn thriving during the growing season.
Three Applications Per Year
You can divide your fertilizer to apply it in three equal doses throughout the growing season, if you prefer. This usually means once a month for three months -- such as September, October and November -- for cool-season grasses. However, you can also apply two doses early in the growing season and one at the end, such as in September, November and May for cool-season grasses. For the last application, you should use an organic slow-release fertilizer, because it won't burn your lawn with too many nutrients at once during the dormant period.
Sometimes grass needs an extra dose of nitrogen, which makes 35-10-10 fertilizer appropriate. Symptoms of a hungry lawn include extra weeds -- particularly clovers -- yellowing grass and fewer clippings when you mow the lawn. A yellow lawn is normal during the dormant period, but if you notice your lawn suffering during the growing season, you can feed it with your 35-10-10 fertilizer to perk it up and refresh its green coloring.