What type of fertilizer now???

Discussion in 'Fertilizer Application' started by Premo Services, Oct 5, 2003.

  1. Premo Services

    Premo Services LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,516

    I have a few customers that decided they want fertilizer along with their aeration. I was thinking to use 25-4-11.

    What are some opinions on this verses the winterizer fertilizer?

    I would think it is too early to use the winterizer fert.
     
  2. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    24-5-11 (I believe that's what you meant), works fine this time of year. The main thing to know, is that you don't want tp put down too much N thime of year, as you don't want a fluch of growth that can cause risk of too long of grass when the snow flies. A good thing to have right now, is high potassium, but it's getting late to apply that, now. The reason it's good to have, is that the turf is utilizing that right now to build root system. (An accelerated process this time of year). I use 24-5-11 at this time of year with great results. Just as the grass slows down, it takes up the nutrient, and because it doesn't expend it by leaf growth, it stores it, and uses it as it comes out of dormancy in the Spring. Now MANY people like to hit it with a quick shot of N to green it up real quick, as peole (customers) really like that effect - equating it to a "healthy, vigorous" lawn. In reality, however, nothing could be farther from the truth. Actually "snapping it out of dormancy is a rather unhealthy practice to turfgrasses. The healthiest thing, is to let it wake up on it's own - at it's own pace. I kind of compare it to us - either getting a good reat and getting up on our own, or being awakened by a loud, blaring alarm clock -BERFORE our natural clock. What I DO practice, at times, is giving it it's first mowing early. Cutting off the dead, brown ends which thereby increase the photosynthetic process. Quick greenup, and the customers love it. They always have the first green lawns on the street. Always puts a smile on their face.:)
     
  3. Premo Services

    Premo Services LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,516

    yup that was a typo... it is 24-5-11
    Thanks fo advice!!!!!!!I was wanting to use that fert now and then a winterizer in late november
     
  4. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    Also, just a note: I mentioned about applying the potassium, and how it was getting late to apply that. Because it is getting late, what I meant by that, was for the full and best benefit of the potassium. This will NOT hurt the grass in any way by applying it late.
     
  5. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    I would apply the winterizer though in late October, early November
     
  6. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    Hee YEAH! As was mine. I meant the PHOSphorous is what helps the root system grow. The potassium actually helps the rigidity and disease tolerance by thickening the cell wall of the plant.
     
  7. CSRA Landscaping

    CSRA Landscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,232

    There must be a massive difference between cool-season and warm-season grasses! We've been applying 5-10-31 on ours. That 24-5-11, or 28-5-12 prolly wouldn't be a good idea to use down here right now.
     
  8. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    Why not? And why all the K this late in the season?
     
  9. CSRA Landscaping

    CSRA Landscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,232

    Toughen it up for winter, I guess ... but if we put that much N down right now, it would bring a flush of growth and would cause damage to the turf when the cold really comes.
     
  10. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    That makes sense, and it's pretty much along the same way of thinking arounf here. Up here, we don't want too much top growth as we enter the cold and winter, for risk of snowmold damage in the Spring if left too long. Usuually though, this can be controlled with close monitering as it goes into dormancy. Latest studies have shown it to be less beneficial to the plant if cut down too low just before winter, too. One thing that IS good about the N being applied a little later, is that while the top growth slows down with the cooler air temps, the plant still continues it's uptake. With this, it takes the N in, and stores it as carbohydrate over the winter, so it has the nutrition and energy to come out of dormancy well. I just cut the top dead stuff off in early spring, and the gras then EXPLODES out of the ground. This is not the same thing as feeding it a heavy dose of N early in the spring. This is not a healthy practice, but is common with many services, just for the early "green" appearance.
     

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