Fertilizing Fescue Grass

Fertilizing Fescue grass throughout the growing season will help keep it healthy and looking its best year after year. This lawn care guide gives you all the details for successfully feeding your lawn.

Most Fertilizers Work Well on Fescue Grass
All fertilizers are formulated with a blend of Nitrogen (N), Phosphorous (P) and Potassium (K). The formula is printed on the bag, something like 16-4-8 or 15-5-10. These show the ratio of these three elements, in that order – N-P-K. As long as the fertilizer has a high first number relative to the others, the Nitrogen number, it will stimulate growth and be suitable for Fescue grass.

Follow application directions on the label, buying enough to cover the entire yard with the adequate amount of fertilizer.

Fertilize in Every Season But Summer
Fescue is a cool season grass, doing most of its growing in the spring and fall. This is when it should be assisted in the process with fertilizer. Depending on how long your winters are, fertilize 3-4 times per year. In warmer climates, fertilize in February, April, late September and late November. In cooler climates, fertilize in March, early May, mid-September and early November.

Why not fertilize in the summer months? Fescue doesn’t grow much in the warm months, so adding fertilizer at that time, when the grass won’t process it well, can be harmful.

Adding Lime to the Soil Helps Fescue
Every few years, you may want to lime your lawn to produce a pH number that Fescue prefers. Applying 20 pounds of lime per 1,000 square feet twice a year will create soil conditions more conducive to healthy grass. Lime the lawn in mid-spring and mid-fall for best results.

How to Fertilize Fescue Grass
Drop spreaders and cyclone spreaders work well for fertilizing. Buy a quality spreader with an accurate dial, so you know you’re delivering the right amount of fertilizer.

Spread the fertilizer in 2 applications, with half the amount being put down each time. Apply the second half at a 90-degree angle to the first half. For example, if you travel east-west on the first application, travel north-south the second time. While this is not essential, it will produce a more balanced application.

This all may sound more complicated that it really is. In practice, you’ll soon be very comfortable with fertilizing your Fescue lawn.

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