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Successful application of lawn fertiliser

Fertilise a LawnWe have all seen it - stripy lawns where a lawn fertiliser has been incorrectly applied. A bit like the picture of the lawn shown here. It is important to learn how to fertilise a lawn so that you encourage even and consistent growth and colour and plant health. The problem arises when you have the job of trying to match in the light and dark bands of grass without over application of a lawn fertiliser.

The application of a lawn care product such as a granular lawn fertiliser is a calibrated process. Ensuring the correct number of Grams or Kilograms over a certain area, such as 35 grams per single square metre.

A typical bag of Granular Lawn Fertiliser would be in a 20 Kilogram bag and treat on average 666 square metres per single application. A lot of the amateur lawn 3 in 1 fertilisers (containing Moss Killer, Weed Killer and Lawn Fertiliser) are in handy 100 square metre packs for a nominal £8.99 - £10.00 per carton. To add a visual to what 100 square metres looks like, imagine a quarter of a marked out grass or tarmac tennis court. A single tennis court complete with runback inside the wire surround is typically 650 square metres, the actual marked court making up 400 sqm of this total.

A Groundsman tip would be to measure the lawn area by striding across it, then up and down and multiplying the two figures to work out the total number of square yards and then take 10% off this figure to arrive as square metres - 1 square metre = 0.914 square yards. Failing this, you could use of the many measuring wheels. The majority of people just do not know how many square metres of lawn they have, meaning that they guess how much lawn fertiliser they actually require to fully cover the lawns once per feeding session.

Once the area of the lawn is known, read the label to see how many grams per square metre needs to be applied - typically 25 - 35 grams per sqm is the norm. If a bag is 20 Kg in size, there are 1,000 grams per Kilogram so divide this by the number of grams per single square metre to arrive at the total number of sqm the unit of sale will cover - in our case 800 sqm at 25 grams per sqm or 571 sqm at 35 grams per sqm for a 20 Kg bag. Anything less is too little and anything more is too much and a waste too.

Should you not apply the correct amount of lawn fertiliser each 3 monthly fertilising session, the turf grasses will soon show signs of Red Thread Disease which is a lawn disease your lawn will get if nutrient levels are allowed to drop in the summer months - the remedy is to fertilise your lawn straight away.

If you need a hand and a bit of a wise up on How to Fertilise your Lawn please refer to our earlier technical post on this subject and you can view a wide range of Fertiliser Spreaders here.

Should you make a real hash of it and end up with a lawn that looks like a zebra crossing of light green and dark green stripes, wait a few weeks and try and re apply the lawn fertiliser to the light green areas and hope that it colours in. One tip is always to apply lawn fertiliser, half the dose rate twice over the lawn at right angles. So 15 grams each pass, both ways over the lawn if the label rate is 30 grams per square metre. You can always follow your mowing lines to keep in straight lines.

In an ideal world, do not mow a few days before or after a fertiliser application.


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