Organic lawn care guide to having a lush green lawn without toxic chemicals! You can have a lush green lawn without the use of harsh chemicals. This informational guide will provide you with some of the key pointers to a greener healthier lawn.
Rules For A Lush Green Lawn
Chemically fed lawns require more water in that a chemically fed lawns temperature is at a higher degree than that of an organically fed lawn. This is due mainly to the thatch build up which steals moister away from the lawn plant itself. Another factor is that ammonia is a key ingredient in chemical fertilizers. High-Nitrogen fertilizer factories make their Lawn Food out of Urea (CO(NH2)2) by mixing Ammonia and Carbon Dioxide. Using these high nitrogen fertilizers can actually raise the surface of the lawn's temperature by as much as thirteen degrees. This causes an ever ending cycle of having to water heavily. An organic lawn is stronger and will survive through hot days and during the seasons when there if less rain fall. Organically maintained lawns will also recover very quickly when damaged. You should always use a slow release organic fertilizer which will give your lawn a "little at a time natural feeding". This slow release process will cause the lawn root to become stronger in that it has to work for it's meal. You can find organic fertilizers at most of the major outlets. One of the better know and highly recommended products is under the name of "Ringer".
Cutting your lawn
Mow at the highest setting. The rule of thumb is to cut your lawn around two - two and one half inches in height. If you cut your lawn to low it will become more subject to being dried out and open to disease. Additionally, too low a cut may also provide just enough sunlight for weeds to germinate and crowd out the good lawn plant. When the grass blade is longer it retains more moisture which is beneficial to it's overall condition. Keep in mind that the longer the blades of grass, the more healthy the lawn will be. It is also very important to make sure that your lawnmower blade is sharp in that a dull blade tends to rip the grass and cause brown spots.
Fertilizers And Lime
Fertilizers contain the main three nutrients plants need to grow: nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium (NPK) which is written on the back of fertilizer bags. Most fertilizers also contain additional nutrients such as calcium, sulfur and magnesium. Nitrogen greens up and helps plant foliage to grow strong. Phosphorous helps roots grow and develop. Potassium (Potash) is important for overall plant health. Different lawn types require different fertilizer mixes. You can tell the difference in fertilizers by reading the back of the bag and looking for the NPK label. The NPK label has numbers like 25-5-7 which stands for 25% nitrogen, 5% phosphate and 7% potassium. Granular organic based fertilizer on your lawn do not burn and will feed your lawn at a much slower rate than liquid fertilizers. Organic fertilizers are much safer for your children, pets and also cleaner for the environment. Each bag of fertilizer will come with directions as to the proper amount to spread on your lawn. The spreading calculations are figured by the square footage of the lawn. For example; If your lawn is 20' wide by 30' long the square footage would be 600 square ft. (20 x 30 = 600).
When to Fertilize - Spring Summer and Fall
PH balance: A lawns PH balance is vital in that if the PH balance is off the lawns root system is unable to turn nutrients into food. You can purchase a PH test kit at just about any hardware store. You can fertilize all you want, but if the PH is off it will do you no good. The best way to correct PH balance is with Lime. Dolomite lime is probable the best in that it is granular and slow release. When lawns are showing yellow grass, pale grass... It's time to check the PH balance. The PH balance in soil should be neutral for grass to grow lush and green. Never mix lime with fertilizers as they cancel each other out and a reaction between the two releases nitrogen from the soil. Organic garden lime contains magnesium and calcium which helps plant growth.
Tips For Repairing Bare And Damaged Lawn Areas! For seeds to germinate they must have moist and fertile soil to grow in. You must start to repair with a good dark rich loam base. If the area is small and you don't need a large amount of fresh loam you can enrich your existing soil by adding some potting soil which is rich in nutrients and will give the seed a good environment to thrive. Another great product to help enrich poor soil is Ringer lawn restore product which is available at most hardware and lawn/garden shops. The amount of soil needed for proper growth is about four inches. Upon spreading and racking the new seed into the soil you should lightly roll or pat the surface area to ensure that the area is lightly firm. For additional help you can spread some peat moss which will keep the area moist while the seed is in the process of germinating. You should now lightly spray some water over the area just enough to keep the area moist. A light watering should be followed through daily until the seed fully develops and is able to survive on it's own. Once again, it is very important that the new seed is kept moist. This will greatly improve it's rate of germination into a full lawn plant. Upon the seed developing you can add some organic based fertilizer as directed on the back of the bag. When the lawn is able to be cut, make sure you cut high and let the grass clippings biodegrade into the soil which will continue to feed and improve the lawn's soil.
Thatch And The Benefits Of Grass Clippings
Thatch is a dense layer of living and dead organic matter on the soil/lawns surface. Thatch build up is caused because grass clippings and other debris do not biodegrade as they should. The leading cause of thatch build up is due to chemical fertilizers which interrupt the natural biodegrading of clippings... When a lawn is fed organically the micro organisms, worms.. will work properly and turn the clippings into lawn food. Clippings can generate as much as fourteen percent nitrogen into your lawns soil. This is a primary example why pastures and meadows are always green and never have a brown layer of thatch. It is always better to use a mulching blade on your lawn mower so as to chop up the grass clippings which will in turn become food for your lawn and help enrich the soil. If your lawn has become heavy with thatch caused from chemical fertilizers, it will prevent the water, air and nutrients from getting down into the lawns root system. You should rent a thatching machine or have a landscaper de-thatch your lawn. Once the old imbedded layer of thatch is removed your lawn will be able to start absorbing the water, air and nutrients and begin the process of regenerating towards healthy and green!
Watering Your Lawn
How much water does a lawn need? In the cooler parts of the country grasses need about one to 1.5 inches of water per week to maintain green color during active growth times of the season. It is important to note that organically kept lawns require much less water than chemically fed lawns in that the temperature of a chemical lawn is much higher. Organically kept lawns are much more resilient to bad weather conditions and able to hold well in dry seasons. Many people tend to over water their lawns which actually weakens the root system in that the root system does not have to work to get water. Watering should take place before intense sunlight. Watering during the hot time of the day causes too much water to be lost to evaporation. Watering in the early evenings will leave the lawn damp all night, and may increase the lawns susceptibility to fungus and various molds. Try to rely on mother natures rain as much as possible before taking out the sprinklers.
Enriching Your Soil Is The Key To A Thick Green Lawn!
Organic Home Recipes To Help To Help Your Lawn!
The number one organic homemade recipe to help quickly green-up and improve your lawns overall look and condition is found in most kitchens and laundry rooms --Biodegradable dish detergent, biodegradable dish washer detergent and biodegradable laundry detergent! First off - biodegradable soaps do not harm the environment, they break down in nature and return to their natural state. Just how they help plants is that in the biodegrading process they help to loosen hard packed soil which helps the soil to get air, water and nutrients into the lawn's root system. When a plant such as your lawn receives air, water and nutrients it will flourish! It's as simple as that. Spraying a solution of biodegradable soap mix is like giving your lawn a shampoo. A common mix would be one half teaspoon of biodegradable soap per gallon of water.
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