Northern Cool Season (Bluegrass) Fert Programs?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by BeautifulBlooms, Jan 2, 2008.

  1. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 613

    How many steps do your programs include?
    Do you offer soil testing included with their program?
    What does each step include? Granular, liquid, preM for crabgrass, spotspray, Lbs N/1000, approximate dates of application???

    Here is my program and I am thinking of changing it to the second program listed:

    1)19-0-6 25% NS-52 w/ Dimension .103% (March 24th-April 7th depending on soil temps) (.83 Lbs N/1000)
    2)22-0-10 20% SCU w/ Trimec .21% (Around Memorial Day) (.88Lbs N/1000)
    3)24-0-11 50% SCU (Around July 4th only when rain expected) (1 Lb N)
    4)24-0-11 50% SCU (Around Labor Day) (1Lb N)
    5)18-24-14 50% PCSCU (Around Halloween after grass has slowed significantly) (.75 Lb N, 1 Lb P)

    Total for the season 4.46 Lb N, 1 Lb P, 2.16 Lb K


    I almost feel like the first step fertility is useless if fertilizer was applied at appropriate time in the fall after grass had significantly slowed, leaving a lot of that fertilizer available the following spring so my new customer will get step 1A, and my return customers will get 1B.

    1A)19-0-6 25% NS-52 w/ Dimension .103% (March 24th-April 7th depending on soil temps) (.83 Lbs N/1000)
    1B) Dimension Granular or other Preemergent Crabgrass preventer. No fertilizer included.
    2)22-0-10 20% SCU w/ Trimec .21% (Around Memorial Day) (.88Lbs N/1000)
    3)24-0-11 50% SCU (Around July 4th only when rain expected) (1 Lb N)
    4)24-0-11 50% SCU (Around Labor Day) (1Lb N)
    5)18-24-14 50% PCSCU (Around Halloween after grass has slowed significantly) (.75 Lb N, 1 Lb P)

    If no fertilizer is applied in the early sprign witht he crabgrass preventer, will memorial day be too late for the first application leavign a lapse in growth and color in the middle of may?

    Anyone have any advice on the best time to do a soil test? Is it ok to test right away in spring or will that give inaccurate readings.

    Just looking for comparisons!
     
  2. LawnTamer

    LawnTamer LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,986

    I would be very hesitant to remove my spring fert app. N, can leach out of your root zone, especially with heavy snowfall and subsequent melts. That early app gets the lawn awake and growing.
     
  3. RAlmaroad

    RAlmaroad LawnSite Silver Member
    from SC
    Posts: 2,217

    Why that heavy shot of P in Nov? Would this be after a soil test? Usually turf don't need that much P. Just wondering
     
  4. LindblomRJ

    LindblomRJ LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,570

    I think I would move the first application to after the 7th of April. In my part of the county things might start the end of march, but I prefer to wait due to the chance of a snow and or another freeze.
     
  5. LawnTamer

    LawnTamer LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,986

    I was wondering the same thing, but I figure different places, different soils. I've never found a soil low in phosphorous. I never apply more than 5%, and only do that 1 or 2x/yr. But soils here are naturally high in P.
     
  6. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 613

    Soils are naturally high in P, but that P is unavailable to the plants. Thats the big debate right now, should P be banned from fertilizers and it is based on uneducated politicians. I dont believe it is bad to do what i did, but if the P in the soil is unavailable you need to apply it someway. Maybe it should be split up into other applications, but as long as it isnt illegalt o put P onto turf, I will do so somehow, because I know the P in the soil is mostly unavailable. It is bound up int he soil.
     
  7. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Posts: 6,072

    I like the others question the 18-24-14 down in the fall. With the price of P you can probably save big $$$ by going to a higher N product which will also reduce the volume of product you have to handle.

    The only time I use a product like this is as a Starter.

    I would go with a high N and lower P and K for a late fall/winterizer personally!
     
  8. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Posts: 6,072


    I forgot to add in my last post.....that your reason for adding a higher P source is very poor!

    "Soils are naturally high in P, but that P is unavailable to the plants."

    This is a blanket statement and can't always be used.

    Yes you are correct that there are thousands of pounds of P in the soil and you are correct that most of it isn't plant available. But with that said...it takes very little P to maintain a lawn and I have never seen a lawn call for P when looking at a soil test (here in OH anyway). P is very immobile below 700# and doesn't leach and about the only way P can be lost is through soil erosion.

    If you are rasing a "good" lawn and are not removing the clippings then you should be fine!

    I would never add higher amounts of P and K on a regular basis unless a soil test called for it! Plus it just costs too much especially when it may not even be needed!!!!:hammerhead:

    We are going to lose the use of P in the future because of people like you that don't know what you are doing and understand how to use prodcuts!
     
  9. FdLLawnMan

    FdLLawnMan LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,183

    BeautifulBloom

    I am 60 miles north of you and the following is my program. You can take it for what it is worth but I have had excellent results with it.

    If the lawn needs a preemergent I use either liquid Dimension or Dimension in a WSP form. I apply no nitrogen before May 15. I know there are people who disagree with me but if you have applied the correct nitrogen in the fall the lawns do not need that shot of nitrogen in the spring. Early nitrogen leads to excess top growth, reduced root growth, lower tolerance of drought in the summer and possible disease problems later in the year. Most of the preemergent I apply is along driveways and sidewalks.

    I apply either a 75% or a 96% slow release between May 15 & June 15. They both contain little or none P & low amounts of K. Soils tests in my area do not call for it. If the soil tests show it it is available to the plant. During this period I treat weeds with a liquid weed control product.

    From June 15 until August 20 all I do is spot treat the weeds and look for any crabgrass that may have broken through. If I see any crabgrass I treat it with Drive.

    Starting August 20 I apply 24-0-11 with a 50% slow release. I do this until Sept. 15

    Starting the end of September I start spraying for weeds.

    Starting around Halloween I apply 46-0-0. Yes, I am one of those guys that apply straight urea in late fall. I have done this for the past four ears with excellent results. I apply this within two weeks of when the lawn stops growing. I have no more disease problems that anyone else and the lawn looks excellent in the spring. The lawn stays green until my first application of fertilizer in May.

    All nitrogen is applied at 1 lb/1000 Sq. Ft. which means the lawn is receiving 3 lbs per year. The early summer and early fall fertilizers contain 2% iron and my fertilizers come from Lesco.
     
  10. BeautifulBlooms

    BeautifulBlooms LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 613

    Why do you personally attack someone w/ statements like "because of people like you", I was using the best of my knowledge to come to the assessment. This is a point of contention in the science world right now and I understand the politicians are getting involved, but why are there so many professional people going to the politicians to explain to them about the reasons for Phosphorus use, and to explain the science behind it. Please keep in mind, I am here asking for input to get a best assessment of my program and to see if most other people do it differently. I was doing it to the best of my knowledge, and I am here to learn from other professionals.

    Thank you for your advice, I will listen to it, but please refrain from attacking someone who is trying to learn more! Just give your advice and leave your personal assessment of my experience and knowledge out of it. If I am the only person applying phosphorus then I would understand this, but I know I am not. I have had 5 lawns, and 13 lawns the last 2 years respectively, so it isnt like I am doing this to 10,000 acres per year, I am still tweaking my fert program to get what works best and also what is environmentally responsible.

    Sometimes I wish people could just objectively give advice on here, there seems to be so much "I am better because" or "man you are an idiot".

    Just my piece of advice. Thank you all for your advice, I am still learning.
     

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