What do I need?
Here is a list of frequently asked questions. Call us if you have any other questions.
When do I need to fertilize?
Temperature is the best guide.
- Spring/summer grasses will actively begin to grow when soil temperatures are above 60-65 degrees. If you’re looking for a specific date, start watching the temperature around April 15th for favorable conditions.
- Winter cover crops will actively begin to grow when temperatures are a bit cooler. Look to spray when day time temperatures are around 60 degrees. The rule of thumb is to spray in mid to late February to get you to spring. You can also spray in the fall (October, November) to push early growth.
What fertilize do I use?
Without a soil analysis it is hard to guess what deficit your soils have. But there are some general rules of thumb that are helpful:
- Most grasses like a 3-1-2 blend of NPK. For example 18-6-12, 18-4-12, 16-6-12.
- Sandy soils tend to be deficient in Nitrogen and Potash so look to get a fertilizer like a 18-4-12.
- Clay soils tend to be deficient in Nitrogen and Phosphorus. Try a fertilizer like an 18-5-5 or 21-10-0.
- When it comes to cover crops (winter wheat or rye) most people are more interested in top growth and protein over root development. So the best treatment is a top dress of 200-250 lbs. of a straight nitrogen. (32-0-0).
How much fertilizer do I need?
Again it depends.
- Haymeadows. Volume and quality. Suggestion would be around 350-450 lbs. of a good blend per acre or 200-250 lbs of nitrogen. If you have a weed problem add some 24-D.
- Pastures. Grazing is usually your objective, and your best bet is weed and feed. If you’re spending all that money on fertilizer, you want to be sure it is going towards grass production – not weeds. 200-250 lbs. of a good blend with a quart rate of good weed kill (with residual) is best. If you want to use nitrogen,150-200 lbs of nitrogen with the same rate of weed spray. For every lb. of weeds you kill you can gain 2-3 lbs of grass.
- Remember fertilizer and weed kill is not a cure all. If you are over grazing your pastures, you will not get maximum return on any fertilizer. Over grazed pastures don’t develop good root systems and in turn produce weaker plants. Good stocking rates, pasture rotation with a good weed and feed program is always the best long-term solution.
What weeds do I have?
This is a hard one. Most weeds have green leaves with purple, yellow or white flowers. Visit our weed identification page for help identifying common weeds. Otherwise, call us and give a detailed description over the phone to help us determine the best course of action. You can also email us a picture and or go to several weed ID sites to find an appropriate name. If we can identify the weed, we can better help you control it.