Tips For Fertilizing Lawn In The Heat

A beautiful, lush green lawn is not infrequently the eye-catcher in a garden. However, fertilization is absolutely necessary for this. Contrary to popular belief, fertilizing should be done in the summer months and not necessarily in the fall. In this way, the lush, summer green can be preserved. In addition, the individual plants are additionally strengthened. However, it depends on the right summer fertilizer.

Summer fertilization


All plants need nutrients to grow and thrive. Normally, they get them from the soil. However, the repertoire of nutrients in the soil is eventually exhausted. Consequently, nutrients have to be added. This is usually done by applying fertilizer. The intensity of fertilization varies from plant to plant. The lawn in the garden should be fertilized twice a year. The first fertilization is done in the spring, so that the grass can recover from the rigors of winter. Many people believe that the second fertilization should be done in the fall. However, this is a mistake. If you really want to do something good for his lawn, fertilize it not in the fall, but already in the summer. Consequently, the months of June, July, August and the first half of September are suitable for this.

Note: Lawn fertilization in October or even later should be the absolute exception and should only be done on heavily used lawns such as a soccer field.

The reason for summer fertilization: During the summer months, grass growth is in full swing. It runs at full speed, so to speak. It is clear that this also requires a particularly large amount of nutrients. If these nutrients are lacking, growth inevitably suffers – and so, of course, does the overall appearance of the lawn. Basically, without the application of a summer fertilizer, the lawn will enter the rest period in the fall and winter weakened.

A later fertilization can not optimally compensate for this condition. Incidentally, summer fertilization also causes the grass to maintain a rich, often downright bright green.


Summer fertilizer

Summer fertilization is particularly important on two aspects: On the use of the right fertilizer and on the timing. Generally speaking, you can’t go wrong with an organic fertilizer. It is explicitly suitable even in very hot weather. Mineral fertilizers, on the other hand, should be avoided in the summer, as they can accelerate the burning out of the lawn. In addition, it can easily lead to overfertilization. In addition, there is a risk that the soil quality will be damaged in the medium term by mineral fertilizers.

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Tip: Mineral fertilizer should generally not be used after the month of August.

Incidentally, the type of soil on which the lawn grows is also important. The amount of fertilizer that can or should be applied depends to a large extent on the type of soil.

The following allocation has proven itself:

  • light sandy soil: Fertilization in August with
  • 50g/square meter
  • medium-heavy soil: Fertilization in August with 50g/square meter
  • medium-heavy clay soil: Fertilization in August with 60g/square meter
  • heavy clay soil: Fertilization in August with 80g/sq.m.


The basis for this information is always that the first fertilization has taken place in spring. It is recommended to do it in April and May. If it is not possible to fertilize the lawn in August, this can also be done in June. Absolutely unsuitable, however, is the month of July, as it is usually the hottest and driest month.

Tip: When buying lawn fertilizer should definitely give preference to organic fertilizer in organic quality.

Timing


With the choice of a month, the right time for fertilizing is of course only very roughly limited. In order for the fertilizer to be effective and not to fizzle out ineffectively or even cause damage, a few factors must come together, especially in summer. One can understand the following advice also as fertilizing tips with large heat:

  • never fertilize in full sun or during the midday hours
  • use the rather cool morning hours to apply the fertilizer
  • do not apply fertilizer on a very dry soil
  • if possible, water the area well before applying the fertilizer
  • use rather cool days or rainy days
  • When applying fertilizer, be sure to orientate yourself to the current weather (temperatures).

It should have become clear that the right time depends to a good extent on the weather. Heat and drought are not good conditions for fertilizing a lawn. It is therefore advisable to pay particular attention to weather fluctuations in the summer and, if necessary, to spring into action at short notice when the weather cools down. If this is not possible for whatever reason, it is essential to use the very early morning hours for fertilization. Since it is known to get light outside very early during the summer months, this should not be a problem. The supposedly cool evening hours, on the other hand, are less suitable, since at this time the soil is still very much heated by the sun.

After fertilization


Immediately after application, the lawn fertilizer is naturally on the surface of the soil. There, however, the individual grasses can do very little with it. It must therefore reach the soil, where the roots of the plants can then absorb the nutrients. The quickest way to achieve this is to water thoroughly after each fertilization. In spring, a rain shower or two can be helpful. Often there is still a certain amount of soil moisture, which dissolves the lawn fertilizer. However, things are usually different when summer fertilizer is applied. Therefore, immediately after fertilizing the lawn must necessarily be supplied with water. Incidentally, it is also recommended to treat the lawn as gently as possible in the days that follow.

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Fertilizing your lawn during hot weather can be challenging, as high temperatures can stress the grass and affect the effectiveness of fertilization. However, with careful planning and the right approach, you can still achieve a healthy, green lawn in the heat. Here are some tips for fertilizing your lawn in hot weather:

1. Choose the Right Fertilizer:

  • Use a slow-release or controlled-release fertilizer. These types of fertilizers release nutrients gradually over time, providing the grass with a steady supply of nutrients without the risk of burning during hot weather.
  • Opt for a balanced fertilizer with a nutrient ratio appropriate for your grass type and region. Common ratios include 10-10-10, 20-5-10, or similar. The first number represents nitrogen, the second is for phosphorus, and the third is for potassium.
  • Consider using organic fertilizers, which release nutrients slowly and improve soil health over time. Organic options are less likely to cause excessive growth spurts, reducing the need for frequent mowing during hot weather.

2. Timing Matters:

  • Fertilize in the cooler parts of the day, either early in the morning or late in the evening. This reduces the risk of fertilizer burn and allows the grass to absorb nutrients before the day’s heat.
  • Avoid fertilizing during the hottest part of the day to prevent the fertilizer from evaporating or burning the grass.

3. Water Before and After Fertilizing:

  • Water your lawn thoroughly a day or two before applying fertilizer. Moist soil helps the grass absorb nutrients more effectively.
  • After fertilization, water your lawn lightly to activate the fertilizer. This helps nutrients reach the grass roots. Watering immediately after application is especially important if you’re not expecting rain.

4. Reduce Fertilizer Amounts:

  • During hot weather, it’s advisable to reduce the amount of fertilizer you apply. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for your specific product, and use less if you’re uncertain about the dosage.
  • Consider using a half or quarter rate of nitrogen compared to what you’d use during cooler months. This helps prevent excessive growth, which can stress the grass in hot conditions.

5. Avoid High-Phosphorus Fertilizers:

  • High-phosphorus fertilizers may encourage root growth but can also contribute to phosphorus runoff into water bodies, causing environmental problems. Check your local regulations and use low- or no-phosphorus fertilizers when necessary.
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6. Monitor Weather Conditions:

  • Check the weather forecast before fertilizing. Avoid fertilizing during extended heatwaves, as the stress on the grass can increase the risk of burning.
  • If rain is expected, you can schedule your fertilization a day or two before, allowing the rain to help activate the fertilizer.

7. Use Proper Lawn Care Practices:

  • Continue with good lawn care practices during hot weather. This includes regular mowing, proper watering, and reducing traffic on the grass during peak heat hours.

8. Maintain Soil Health:

  • Regularly test your soil to ensure it has the right pH levels and nutrient balance. Healthy soil provides a good foundation for your lawn to thrive, even in hot weather.

9. Consider Drought-Resistant Grass Varieties:

  • If you live in an area with hot, dry summers, consider overseeding with drought-resistant grass varieties. These types are better adapted to hot and dry conditions and require less water and maintenance.

10. Limit Foot Traffic:

  • During hot weather, try to limit foot traffic on the lawn, as the grass is more susceptible to damage and stress.

11. Cool-Season Grasses:

  • For cool-season grasses like Kentucky bluegrass, fescue, and ryegrass, it’s generally best to fertilize in the fall or early spring when conditions are less stressful for the grass. These grasses can struggle in the heat.

12. Warm-Season Grasses:

  • If you have warm-season grasses such as Bermuda, Zoysia, or St. Augustine, it’s generally more appropriate to fertilize during the active growing season in late spring and early summer.

By following these tips, you can effectively fertilize your lawn during hot weather while minimizing the risk of stress or damage to the grass. Proper fertilization practices will help maintain a lush and healthy lawn year-round.

Author

  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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