Q about fert during leaf pickup

Discussion in 'Fertilizer Application' started by piste, Nov 13, 2009.

  1. piste

    piste LawnSite Member
    Posts: 57

    One week ago here in western PA I put down some Jonathan Green Organic 8-3-1 fert on my lawn AFTER I had picked up all the leaves. Now a week later I have a bunch more leaves to remove but we've gotten not a drop of rain. I'm worried that if I use my blower/vac for leaf removal I might suck up some of that (not cheap) fert I put down. The fert is sort of more like a light flake than a granule per se. Was thinking I should run the sprinklers a bit to help the fert settle in and less chance of removing it with the leaves....which I'd do a day later so the leaves aren't so wet. Good idea? Do something else? Or am I overthinking this?

    Thanks!!
     
  2. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,576

    Mow the leaves right over the lawn. They will breakdown and greatly benefit the soil and turf.
     
  3. whoopassonthebluegrass

    whoopassonthebluegrass LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,214

    If leaf-grinding isn't an option, as Barry suggested, then you DO need water it down first. If it were standard fertilizer prill, you'd have nothing to worry about. But since it sounds like you got all flaky on us, you'd best irrigate first.
     
  4. lep

    lep LawnSite Member
    from Texas
    Posts: 52

    I would probably have watered it in after applying it. A lot of times, If I put something down before the lawn guy mows, I know that I have to water it in or it may get blown away. In your case, however, with the leaves on top and then mulching the leaves you'll be ok.
     
  5. piste

    piste LawnSite Member
    Posts: 57

    Thanks for the posts guys. I always mulch grass clippings whenever I can....and know the value of leaf mulch...last week I mowed over the leaves were there without bagging. The grass has virtually stopped growing now so I never thought to mow again solely for purposes of dealing with the leaves....so I guess I was a bit "flaky" :)...thanks for knocking me upside the head to clue me in!!!

    Back story is...I had been reading so much lately about the benefits of late season fert I wanted to get it down last week. And around here this time of year you usually don't have to worry about doing any watering as rain usually comes along pretty frequently....and as of last week we hadn't had any in a week or so....Well don't you know we still haven't gotten a drop and after a very unusually mild and pleasant weekend last week...we are about to head into the same again this weekend...mid 60's...with no chance of rain for pretty much another 7 days!!!! On top of that...I've picked up SO many leaves I figured it'd be a few weeks til I had to pick up what I thought would be the last batch....during which time we'd get the rain for the fert. Wrong again.....back yard is covered real good in leaves again and this weekend is a good opportunity weather wise to deal with them...thus my initial conundrum. Mowing the leaves it is!!!! Deals with them and keeps the fert where it belongs. Thanks again. :drinkup:
     
  6. lep

    lep LawnSite Member
    from Texas
    Posts: 52

    A Texas A&M coop web page stated not to let the soil get dry in the winter, so it's probably ok to water 1/4" if it's not freezing or frosting where you are. There's a story about a little old lady who had the greenest lawn in the winter, and some guy determined that all she did was water once a week. If you're in the south or warmer climate where it can be 90 degrees F in February, then don't stop working on your lawn.
     
  7. piste

    piste LawnSite Member
    Posts: 57

    Figured couldn't hurt to do both...meaning I watered in the fert on Sat AM as best I could....let it dry out til Sunday afternoon...then mowed over the leaves in back yard. Skipped the front as there weren't too many leaves there. Glad I watered as we've been bone dry with unusually high temps here in Western PA for a bit over two weeks...with slight chance of rain this Thurs...but could easily go a whole nuther week with warmer temps and no rain. Few people realize the need to water based on conditions....we're all kind of trained to do that based more on the calendar! I'm guessing some time late Nov or early Dec a switch will flip and we'll instantly go from regularly in the 50's and 60's for a month with no rain...to a snowstorm...who knows.

    Thanks again all.
     

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