The Q&A Archives: lawns

Question: there is mix of beer and epson salts for the lawn which will make it green up do you know what it is?

Answer: Juan,

There are lots of such home potions out there in garden lore. While they may do a little good here and there they tend to be of virtually no benefit and are often expensive when you consider the size of a lawn. Such concoctions are usually promoted by certain gardening personalities because they really are attention getting and entertaining to viewers/readers.

The primary benefit of epsom salts is the magnesium it contains. Not many lawns need a supplemental magnesium application and a soil test is the only way to be sure.

From a horticultural standpoint you would do much better to apply a quality fertilizer based on your particular soil's nutrient content and your particular plant's needs. For a lawn a product with a 3-1-2 or 4-1-2 ratio of nutrients applied in spring and fall is about right. The first number on the bag is the percent nitrogen. Divide that into 100 and the result is the pounds to apply per 1,000 square feet of lawn. So for a 21-7-14 fertilizer you would apply about 5 pounds per 1,000 square feet (100 divided by 21 is approximately 5).

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