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The Best Time to Fertilize Your Grass

Updated: Feb 18, 2021


Did you know that most of the lawns in the Greater Cincinnati area are fescue-blended types of grass? Fescue grass and its many varieties are cool-season grasses that are best suited in the Cincinnati area or zone. (Cincinnati is classified as Zone 6, with some elements of Zone 5.) By understanding this pertinent information, we can figure out the best time to fertilize your grass!


Fescue grass thrives best when it is heavily fertilized in the fall. Since root activation is at its peak in the fall for all plants in our zone, providing food (fertilizer) is essential to the plant surviving the winter and coming out strong in the spring. If you can only do one application a year, this is the one not to miss! Providing food in early spring is still necessary, but the amount should be minimal. The grass plant will store food from the fall application and begin using this food the moment Mother Nature says "go!" Spring rains and rising temperatures will already make the grass grow, along with all the competition (weeds). Applying pre-emergence with a little food is step one in any program. The spring application will help give the plant that deep green color we all love.


Unfortunately, cool-season grasses will show stress in the summer. Heat, combined with minimal rain, is the culprit of this stress. Providing food prior to the arrival of hot temperates will help the plant survive this period. The other important part of this equation is water. It is imperative to water your grass (we'll provide watering instructions in a future blog post).


At Heritage Lawn Care Plus, we like to provide food at the end of the summer or beginning of fall. This helps the plant rebound from the stress of the summer. Then the moment the leaves start to change color, it is time to get the last and final fall application down. The leaves changing color is our cue that root activation has started and the plant is ready for more food. Repeat this process over and over through the years for healthy, green grass.

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