How Important is Fertilization?

by The Pros

Mythconception All fertilization events are an opportunity for nutrients to leach or runoff into water bodies.

Fact: Fertilization is incredibly important in maintaining a healthy attractive landscape. The benefits of a healthy turf are numerous, including decreasing our carbon footprint, reducing soil erosion, temperatures, noise, air pollution, filtering the effects of stormwater runoff, providing play areas and keeping little paws from tracking dirt into the house. OK, that last fact is based on my own scientific observations at my home. The other facts are published facts taught in a cliff hanger research paper by Beard and Green (Beard, J.B. And R.L. Green. 1994. The role of turfgrasses in environmental protection and their benefits to humans. J. Environmental Qual. 23:452-460).

Application amounts is established by scientific criteria. When the proper blend and rates are used 100% of the nitrogen applied is utilized by the turf. Nutrients are required by the turf and plants to be up to doing the jobs listed above.

The type of fertilizer is critical. Some franchises use cheap fertilizer that has quick release nitrogen. Quick release of nitrogen impresses you by greening up your lawn quickly which gives the illusion of health. The reality is the nutrients need to be released over a period of time to develop healthy root systems. At Nature's Finest we pay an additional $18 - 14/bag to have a blend that is absorbed and utilized by the landscape. The extra expense is caused by having the nitrogen wrapped which makes it impossible for the fertilizer to leach into our water. The fertilizer we choose to use is environmentally responsible. The price is significantly different. Some competitors use 50# bags that cost $14 - $20. With the slow release nitrogen and added nutrients we pay $32 - $38 a bag. Our water is worth protecting.

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