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opinions (fertilizer app.)

Discussion in 'Fertilizer Application' started by mrkosar, Aug 23, 2006.

  1. mrkosar

    mrkosar LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 664

    what i would like to know is when is a better time to put down fertilizer? after aeration and before overseeding or after aeration and overseeding? before you tell me put down a starter fert after both services listen to this.

    my lesco rep told me that where i live there is so much phosphorus in the soil you don't need starter fertilizer. so, here is what i'm working with.

    my schedule is going to consist of renting an aerator and doing all my aerations in a week, then the next week renting a slice seeder and doing all of the overseedings then.

    for customers who are due for their application of an organic based fert (15-3-7) when do you think is the best time to apply this? i am obviously not going to spot treat the weeds like normal, but was wondering suggestions on when to apply their fertilizer application. i was thinking after the aeration and before the overseeding. or should i hold off for maybe 3 weeks even though they are due for an application?
  2. teeca

    teeca LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,202

    i do aerations, seed, then fert several weeks later (after aerations), their has been university studys that show a strait urea N can cause damage to seed as its germinating. not sure which site i read this on, but i have read it. as far as slice seeding, i just apply out of a spreader unless the lawns are that bear you need the extra time for slice seeding. most blue grass lawns will fill in within a year if a good fert program is in place.
  3. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    Soil Application and Placement of Urea If properly applied, urea and fertilizers containing urea are excellent sources of nitrogen for crop production. After application to the soil, urea undergoes chemical changes and ammonium (NH4 +) ions form. Soil moisture determines how rapidly this conversion takes place. When a urea particle dissolves, the area around it becomes a zone of high pH and ammonia concentration. This zone can be quite toxic for a few hours. Seed and seedling roots within this zone can be killed by the free ammonia that has formed. Fortunately, this toxic zone becomes neutralized in most soils as the ammonia converts to ammonium. Usually it's just a few days before plants can effectively use the nitrogen. Although urea imparts an alkaline reaction when first applied to the soil, the net effect is to produce an acid reaction. Urea or materials containing urea should, in general, be broadcast and immediately incorporated into the soil. Urea-based fertilizer applied in a band should be separated from the seed by at least two inches of soil. Under no circumstances should urea or urea-based fertilizer be seed-placed with corn. With small grains, 10 lb. of nitrogen as urea can generally be applied with the grain drill at seeding time even under dry conditions. Under good moisture conditions, 20 lb. of nitrogen as urea can be applied with the grain drill. Research results at North Dakota State University indicate that under dry conditions, urea at the rate of more than 20 lb. nitrogen per acre, applied with a grain drill in a 6-inch spacing, can reduce wheat stands more than 50% (Table 5) Research at the University of Wisconsin indicates that seed-placed urea with corn, even at low rates of nitrogen, is very toxic to the seed and greatly reduces yields (Table 6). When urea was side-placed as a 2" x 2" starter, however, little if any damage was noted (Table 7).
  4. mrkosar

    mrkosar LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 664

    you are way over my head bro.

    after just aeration, after both services, or 3 weeks later? i'm sure you answered it, but i got lost with the grain drills and ammonia turning into ammonium. muddstopper thanks for the information, but can you give it to me as if i were mentally handicapped. i am slightly. thanks.
  5. Dr Green

    Dr Green LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    Lesco reps are cowboys... what he should have said was There is an abundance of phosphorous is the soil, But most of it is tied up in the soil and not in a form the grass plant can uptake. Most of it is unavailable.

    That is why you apply the starter fert high in P . Applying Solucal (a fast acting calcium ph adjusting materail) works real well for me. The Chelating agent on the Solucal reacts and begins to make changes fast. within 2 weeks. It uses the nutrients in the soil already because the quick PH adjustment releases whats there. LAwns turn green with out any N when you apply to existing lawns.

    After that, I wait about 2-3 weeks and come back with the starter fert.

    6 weeks later a high quality Fert will get it roaring.

    If you have to apply fert right away, I prefer the last thing on a reno. Most of the fert you guys are using is an SCU product with some immediatly available Nitrogen. Whatever % of SCU slow release N you have is vulnerable to mechanical breakdown of the sulfur coat with the tines and Blades . When that happens, you have quick release N instead of Slow release on the SCU particles.
    Maybe some day in the future you can take a look at other Slow release N products that release a bit more even and not prone to mechanical breakdown.
  6. FINN

    FINN LawnSite Senior Member
    from PA.
    Posts: 280

    If you were doing an extensive renovation or primary seeding I would put the fert down first and work it into the soil.

    For an aerate and overseed I would do the fert last. You might want to get a soil test to see what would benefit the site the most. Share it with your customers and explain what they have for a soil type etc. Apply an organic bio stimulant and maybe a liquid calcium if the soil test dictates it. The benefits would be measurable, it's more revenue for you, better job for your customers and will separate you from Darrel and Darrel.

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