There are plenty of different fertilizers on the market, some claiming to give you a double dark lawn this year, so how do they work, and should you buy them? This article discusses your lawn’s verdure and not necessarily the best practices for health.
If you want a dark lawn, you need to fertilize it with high nitrogen(N) fertilizer. This is the primary ingredient of most turf fertilizers, the first of the three numbers on the bag analysis. The heavier the rate of N, the darker the colour response. 1lb of nitrogen per 1000 square feet is considered to be the maximum dose to apply to avoid damaging your lawn with synthetic fertilizer, especially in summer conditions.
Why does it work?
Turfgrasses are chronically nitrogen deficient, like a lot of plants grass greatly benefits from an application of N and ultimately results in faster more robust shoot growth and increased chlorophyll (what makes plants green). Nitrogen cycles rapidly in the environment and to keep an extra green lawn, supplemental N is required regularly.
Iron is involved in the production of chlorophyll without being an actual part of the molecule. The availability of iron in the soil is complex and is why MOST soil-applied iron will NOT affect turf colour. Iron is the 4th most abundant mineral in the soil after all but can be bound up or oxidized which makes the iron unavailable to plants. Liquid, foliar-applied iron works well, but once iron is in the plant, it is immobile and will need to be reapplied after a few mows.
Renew-a-lawn has the only soil-applied source of iron readily available to plants meaning it will last for several weeks!
Iron & nitrogen will green up any lawn but some grass types are actually naturally darker. Kentucky bluegrass naturally has a darker blueish tint (hence the name) compared to other varieties but that’s not to say that it’s meant for any lawn. It is not a great choice for shady or drought-prone lawns and will not perform as well as some other turf types in these conditions. Seed selection matters. Lighter green grasses include annual ryegrass rough bluegrass and crabgrass to name a few. Some annual ryegrass cultivars are bred for a darker colour.
Watering your lawn
It may be obvious but keeping your lawn dark, requires water. Remember water is especially important to plants because it is how they make their food and transport nutrients and more. Water also affects Nitrogen and iron in the soil. Wet conditions allow bacteria to solubilize iron but too much water leeches out nitrogen lowering its concentration. Excessive water also allows microbes to convert nitrogen into a gas, releasing it from the soil. Proper watering is important to the balance of available nutrients in your lawn
Iron and nitrogen will surely keep your lawn extra dark this year but can be easy to apply incorrectly. Renew-a-lawn can certainly take care of the intricacies for you and you can just enjoy greener pastures.