VonJoe Lamp'l - Gardening expert and presenter of Growing a Greener World®
March 27, 2021
junk food. This is how I imagine artificial fertilizers and pesticides when it comes to lawn care.
When you are hungry - very hungry - what do you grab to satisfy that craving? Something that fills you up and tastes decadently delicious (but has no nutritional value)? Or do you prefer whole foods that fuel your body and offer overall health benefits?
Processed snacks full of fat and sugar can "do the job" and be just the thing when hunger strikes, but that instant gratification often has many unpleasant long-term consequences that can have a detrimental effect on your body over time.
But the types of whole foods our bodies really need — like responsibly sourced fruits and veggies — often taste amazing… just without the downsides.
And with lawns, it's one thing to have a lush lawn that's the envy of the block. But to me, getting a beautiful lawn without the toxic lawn care chemicals that are so common and used in backyards across the country is an even better price.
should I putSynthetic Chemicalson my lawn?
Building the overall health of the growing environment that nourishes your lawn - and doing so with organic lawn care - will get you the same green grass on your own side of the fence, but with better, longer lasting results and without the negative side effects of product chemicals.
In our country there is a large market for products for our plants and lawns that promise incredible results: fast growth, fewer weeds and a minimum of pests and diseases. And while most of these products do what they advertise, the environmental and potential health risks posed by their use are more significant than I'm willing to accept.
It was a great concern for a family; They made the switch cold overnight. From a full high chemical maintenance program to full organic maintenance programs on all 40 acres of lawns on your property! We were allowed to participate as the first team.document his incredible story.
Synthetic lawn fertilizer, for example, is based on salt. Used in excess, they will literally burn your weed. But even when used as directed, chemical deposits in soil can harm or even destroy the living organisms that Mother Nature placed there for long-term benefit.
Are lawn pesticides safe for my family and the environment?
In fact, 24 of the 30 most common lawn pesticides are toxic to fish and amphibiansBeyondpesticides.org. Sixteen are poisonous to birds. Eleven are poisonous to bees. And they are products that can be applied in your garden.
To me, that's just unacceptable, to say the least. Like opening a box of Twinkies instead of reaching into the bag of trail mix next to it.
Top 5 natural lawn care tips and care
In the spirit of kicking the junk food habit to the side, here are five steps I use every spring to feed my lawn a "whole food" diet and implement a healthy diet that's satisfying and rewarding in all the right ways is.
1) Conduct a soil test
The information this test provides can help you ensure you are doing everything you can to promote the health of your soil.healthy soil, in turn, provides the best long-term benefits for your lawn.
Of all the important things a soil test reveals, the most important thing I look for is the soil pH. When this number is in the "optimal" range for growing weed, the roots of the weed are able to utilize the nutrients already present, minimizing the need to add anything else. Outside of this range, adding more chemicals not only won't help, it could make conditions worse.
The magic number? Something between 6.5 and 7.0. Getting your soil pH in this ideal range is a key factor in how lush your lawn is. And a ground test will show you how to get there. Call your District Extension Service for the soil test kit and additional information.
2) Clean up your garden
I prefer to have a clean surface to work with before adding products to my lawn.Stroh, leaf debris and weeds can prevent soil amendments from entering the soil. A hard rake and some elbow grease is usually enough to prepare the turf surface. Gather what you scrape and add to your compost.The compound stimulates the production of beneficial bacteriaand fungi, which break down organic matter and enrich the soil.
3)Aerate your lawn
A clean surface also makes room for the probes of a tool called a core aerator. This equipment extracts soil plugs (seeds) from the ground. These extracted kernels mitigate soil compaction, creating more space in the soil for root expansion, oxygen exchange, and drainage. The small holes left after aeration also collect and hold soil amendments or fertilizers in place.
Yes, a garden full of unplugged looks messy. But it's temporary. The drill cores will be back in the ground within a few days after doing their job.
Aeration is a very useful step, but not essential. Since a core aerator is a tool that works one afternoon a year, it probably makes more sense to rent one than to buy one and store it for the other 364 days.
4) Eat or alone
All grass types (except centipede grass)They are heavy feeders. I use two main products. And unlike synthetic fertilizers, both boost soil health and naturally nourish the lawn.
To add compost to your lawn:
It is packed with all the nutrients a lawn needs and contains many other beneficial ingredients important for maintaining long-term soil and lawn health. A little compost will do, but you should still add at least half an inch over the entire lawn.
For most backyards, this can quickly deplete your supply of homemade compost and is likely an impractical option for purchasing bagged compost. Instead, look for a reputable bulk supplier that offers "STA-Compound". This designation stands for the Test Assurance Seal, iepublished by the Composting Board of the United States.* Products labeled STA have been analyzed for ten key compost quality criteria.
Adding Milorganite to Your Lawn:
When it comes to bagged fertilizer this is my number one choice, especially for lawns. It is derived from organic sources, non-burning, slow-release nitrogen feed with iron. Milorganite is good for building a healthy lawn with good green color and also improves soil health. It has an excellent consistency of its ingredients, is readily available and is easily applied with a rotary dispenser or dropper.
5)Cut and water less
Use the techniques listed above and you will have a lush green lawn - yes, one that requires regular mowing, but not too much. With organic lawn care, you let your grass grow to the tallest height of your preferred area. This results in a stronger lawn with deeper roots and fewer weeds as the taller leaves provide shade and compete with weeds competing for space.
Another benefit of organically farmed lawns: Better soil health encourages deeper roots and better water retention capacity. In short, they are more drought tolerant and require less supplemental watering.