Your lawn needs a doctor. Sometimes it’s for checkups and wellness, and other times for illness, but your lawn is a living organism needing a doctor’s care. You can be that doctor, or at least a paramedic or EMT, or you can get a consultant to advise you, but either way if you want a healthy lawn you need a doctor’s care. Here are three things you need to think about when diagnosing what’s ailing your lawn and prescribing fertilizer to treat it.

Editor’s Pick

This product comes in a variety of N-P-K formulas and is designed to use as a stand-alone or additive. Humboldts Secret

Just like a doctor checks your temp and blood pressure and analyzes your blood chemistry, you need to look at your lawn’s sun/shade ratio, soil pH and fertility characteristics, grass types, and so on. Do a soil test or have a soil sample analyzed at your county cooperative extension office. You can easily test pH and moisture with a soil meter. The results will identify any deficiencies and you can select a compatible fertilizer with an N-P-K number or other additives to address your grass type and growing conditions.

Great Value

It improves soil conditions while offering protection against disease, insects, and drought during the growing season. Jobe’s Organics

If a little is good, then a lot is better, right? That’s generally not true when cooking and it sure isn’t when fertilizing. Too much fertilizer usually results in a burnt lawn and adding additional chemical loads to surrounding areas and watersheds. Most quality fertilizers will indicate the proper application ratio of pounds per square foot and often the appropriate setting on standard fertilizer spreaders.

Also Consider

This one is fast-acting and includes an iron-supplement. Scotts

Some fertilizers are designed for application at certain times of the year. Others require more frequent application. If your fertilizer prescription includes weed and bug control, you may also need more frequent application. If your preference is “one and done” be sure to choose a fertilizer that features a slow or controlled release.