Lawn burned by fertilizer - Knowledgebase Question

Leesburg, Vi
Question by mallard015
June 18, 2010
How do I fix an overfertilized lawn? New lawn, 8 wks old, front sod, back seeded. Company suggested fertilizing after 8 wks. Now it is all brown in front. Help! Thx.

Answer from NGA
June 18, 2010


How aggravating! It's usually safe to feed a new lawn after you've mowed it 2-3 times. Waiting this amount of time will allow the roots to establish well before the lawn is fed. The excess fertilizer can eventually be leached by watering heavily and repeatedly. There's not much else you can do. Time will eventually solve the problem. When using a drop spreader, it is better to measure the amount of fertilizer you need to use for the square footage you have to cover, then set the spreader on a very light application, and then go over the area repeatedly at the light rate until the fertilizer is used up. Be sure to follow the label instructions as to how much to use in total, because it is better to use the right amount or if anything, underfertilize than to overfertilize. Also change your walking pattern (eg up and down and then back and forth and then diagonally both ways) as you go to avoid accidentally leaving any lines or skipping places. By using a low rate and spreading in different patterns you will not overdose any particular area and you will still use the recommended amount of fertilizer. It takes a little bit longer, but it makes it nearly impossible to overdose any spots. It's also important to water the lawn well after feeding, especially when the temperatures are high. Hope your lawn recovers soon!

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