For other tips see pdf how to fertilize your lawn responsibly. Eliminate grass clipping collection csu extension colorado. Phosphorus is an essential nutrient that all plants need to grow and survive. It helps improve the lawns health and quality, and youre less likely to need fertilizer. Do not make 1st fertilizer application until the lawn is actively growing and has been mowed 2 to 3 times p. Fertilizing with yard trimmings wsu research exchange. Total nitrogen applied per square feet should not. Put simply, nitrogen encourages grass plants to grow.
How to use grass clippings in the garden balcony garden web. Lawns kept at the proper height also cut more easily and quickly. Note that lawn maintenance fertilizers sold in connecticut contain 0%. Nc state university caring for your lawn and the environment. Source of nitrogen a watersoluble source of nitrogen has a higher leaching potential than a slowrelease source, especially when its application is. Grass clippings dos and donts valparaiso utilities, in. Wet grass clings to the mower and clumps on the turf. Too much fertilizer will make your lawn grow faster, resulting in more mowing and more clippings. Lawn fertilizers now sold in the state are formulated to comply with lawn fertilizer law. This reduces the need for added nitrogen fertilizer. Leave clippings on your lawn fertilize your lawn by leaving your grass clippings behind. Mowing guide the proper mowing height reduces weed competition and promotes healthy grass growth. When returned to the lawn, clippings recycle nutrients in an. Nitrogen is the fertilizer nutrient most used by turf.
Decomposition rates and n release patterns of turfgrass clippings from lawns are not well understood. The common sense gardening guide to natural lawn care. Space fertilizer applications 4 to 8 weeks apart using a combination of quick and slow release nitrogen n. Recycling grass clippings johnson county extension office. In fact, fresh clippings can provide a lawn with onequarter of the nitrogen it needs from a fertilizer. Apply 5 mm or 14 inch compost or high quality slow release mineral or organic fertilizer to stimulate root growth during the active growing season. Recommended nitrogen fertilizer schedule where clippings are not collected. Grass clippings do not need to be collected and can actually benefit the turf by returning nutrients and organic matter to the soil. Grass clippings contain 4% nitrogen, 1% phosphorus and 2% potassium. Clippings are high in nitrogen and decompose quickly to put nitrogen and other nutrients back in the soil. Clumping, wet clippings should be broken up and mowed a second time or raked up and deposited into the compost bin. The most important thing you can do for your lawn is to feed it regularly, and grass clippings contain the same beneficial nutrients like nitrogen and potassium as lawn food, though in smaller amounts.
New lawns need nitrogen for seed germination and to get ahead of the weeds. Lawn care service experts are regularly asked if grass clippings are good for lawns and what to do with grass clippings. About 46 to 59 percent of the applied nitrogen from fertilizer ends up in the clippings. Kelly burke is a freelance writer and professional turf manager. The clippings are a good source of nitrogen so you can reduce your fertilizer use. The key is to apply nitrogen during essential growing seasons. Adapted from colorado state university extension fact sheet 7. Leaving your clippings on the grass after mowing is beneficial as it returns nutrients back to the soil.
In most circumstances, leaving clippings on the lawn is a good practice. Apply nitrogen n to meet your needs and protect the environment. Standard recommendations are for full sun lawn areas, shaded lawn areas need much less nitrogen. Nitrogen and your lawn with the lawn care nut toro yard. Pdf decomposition rates and nitrogen release of turf grass. Too much fertilizer will make your lawn grow faster. I find some places saying grass does not lose much nitrogen as it dries and others showing over 90 percent nitrogen loss during drying. But only leave grass clippings on the lawn if they are short, shorter clippings break down fast.
Maybe spray them with some compost tea to help speed up the decomp. Suggested spreader settings nitrogen lawn fertilizer. Trace element tests are generally not recommended for lawn and garden samples. Extracting nitrates from lawn clippings part 1 making compost. You can mulch mow with a mulching mower, a regular power mower, or push mower. As a new jersey resident, you are already helping to avoid air pollution and wasted resources by recycling. But you can certainly have too much of a good thing when it comes to lawn fertilisers. Because nitrogen is extremely mobile in soils, nitrogen recommendations are based on plant requirements and soil organic matter levels as determined by the laboratory. Leave at least 3 inches on the grass blade after cutting. You can reduce the amount of nitrogen you add to your lawn by if you recycle your grass clippings.
Grass clippings are rich in nitrogen, an important fertilizing agent. Marylands lawn fertilizer law addresses nitrogen and phosphorus content only. Though studies have shown that a lawn of 1,000 square feet can produce 500 pounds of clippings in one growing season, these clippings contribute very little to thatch. Lawn maintenance fertilizers usually have grades like 3204, 29 04 or 1006. A bag of 1505 fertilizer contains 15 percent nitrogen, 0 phosphorus as required by maryland law and 5 percent potassium. Does anyone have a source for the actual carbon to nitrogen ratio of dried grass clippings. Leave grass clippings on your lawn and they will save up to 25% consumption of lawn fertilizers. You may begin to cut the lawn as needed, typically once every five to seven days. It is a good idea to leave the clippings on the lawn if they are not too long. Research shows that most grasses require only modest levels of nitrogen for good color and controlled growth. Grass clippings returned to the lawn reduce the need for nitrogen fertilization by as much as onethird when a lawn is properly maintained. Pdf longterm effects of clipping and nitrogen management in.
If older lawns begin to thin or lose color, application of nitrogen may be necessary. Pdf experiments to document the longterm effects of clipping. Nitrogen in the soil is the most important element for plant development. Never allow the grass to get higher than 4 to 5 inches between mowings.
Grass cut it and leave it environmentallyfriendly lawn care grass clippings are a major part of new jersey s municipal solid waste stream. Removing clippings for composting or mulch removes about 1. Apply fertilizer to your lawn in late april and again in september. The table assumes that all lawn clippings are left on the lawn to be recycled naturally. By cutting the lawn frequently enough, clippings can be left on the lawn to provide organic matter and recycled nitrogen. Download this pollinatorfriendly lawn information as a pdf. Practical lawn fertilization 680 kb, pdf lawn fertilizing quick tip benefits of grasscycling. Grass clippings returned to the lawn provide up to 25 percent of your lawns total fertilizer needs. Dont forget that whatever chemicals your lawn doesnt use up get washed into our water. Clippings provide mineral nutrients to the soil as they decompose. Several envi ronmental studies, however, have documented that excess phosphorus and nitrogen are. To speed composting, combine carbonrich brown materials such as leav es with nitrogenrich green materials such as grass clippings. Overall, grass clippings can provide a portion of the annual nutrient requirement for your lawn. Say i have a large field and could take the clippings from that and put on my lawn.
What is the carbon to nitrogen ratio of dried grass clipping. Annual nitrogen can likely be reduced with no consequences on a lawn fertilized for many years. Recycle grass clippings back into the lawns, such as with a mulching type mower. Regular mowing will greatly reduce the need to collect. One of the major environmental concerns on the minds of many virginians is the protection and preservation of. Applying nitrogen to your lawn you can get nitrogen in the form of synthetics and organics. The role of nitrogen in lawn fertilisers the lawn man. Fertilizing your lawn and garden o c t o b e r e ard. Clippings decompose quickly and do not contribute to thatch. You can also use a mulching mower and leave the leaves on the lawn too. Discussion in fertilizer application started by georgia lawn, apr 17, 2014. Grasscycling is a technicalsounding word that means leaving. They do not contribute appreciably to thatch buildup.
Wet clippings also do not filter through the turf canopy to add nitrogen. Yard waste materials such as grass clippings, leaves, and yard trimmings make. However, grass has a high nitrogen content, a much higher. Nitrogen fertilizer recommendations for lawns are based on the amount of nitrogen removal by the grass plants during the growing season. Clippings are a valuable source of nutrients and you can use less nitrogen fertilizer if you recycle clippings to the lawn. Steps to a successful healthy lawn mulch your grass clippings. Apply only 12 pound of nitrogen per square feet of lawn at each application. Weeding most herbicides wont be able to differentiate between the flowers you want to keep and those you want to remove. Adding organic matter from clippings may help improve your soil if it is sandy, heavy clay or low in organic matter. It is important because nitrogen recommendations for lawns.
Caring for your lawn and the environment reduce runoff and trap pollutants with a healthy yard. In terms of weight, a 10 pound bag of 1505 fertilizer contains 1. Easy ways to get nitrogen into lawns home guides sf gate. I know that mulching your clippings back into the grass saves your nitrogen, but is that nitrogen from those clippings readily available to the plant like a synthetic fertilizer would be. Nitrogen availability is the key to estimating annual. Kopp 1 and karl guillard 2 1 department of plants, soils, and biometeorology, utah state university, 4820 old main.
Spent plants and trimmings from the vegetable garden and flower beds and grass clippings are excellent sources of nitrogen for adding to the compost pile. Carbon to nitrogen ratio all living organisms need relatively large amounts of the element carbon c and smaller amounts of nitrogen n. Or does it have to be broken down and converted like an organic. Litter bags containing clippings were inserted into the. To decrease thatch accumulation, cut no more than one. The type you choose will be based on your own site situation and most big box stores will offer several options. Decomposition rates and nitrogen release of turf grass clippings kelly l. Grasscycling supplies about 20% of the fertilizer requirements of most grasses. In fact, clippings that remain on the lawn quickly decompose because they are composed mostly of water. If your mower cannot be safely operated without the clipping attachment. Grass clippings are used as mulch in gardens or as a source of nitrogen for composting. In this video i will show you how to compost nitrogen rich grass and sometime in the future like a month or more i will show. Percentage of nitrogen in grass clippings home guides.
And its our good friend, nitrogen, that serves as the fuel of it all. Fewer clippings extended color for up to 12 weeks 2705 covers up to 10,000 sq. According to lawn experts a seasons worth of grass clipping, finely chopped and distributed over a lawn, equals at least one fertilizer application if not more. If you do use a lawn care company, ask them about their environmental options and certifications. Yard trimmings are a mixture of grass clippings, leaves, woody trimmings, weeds, and soil. There is no benefit to applying more fertilizer than your lawn requires. They dont contribute appreciably to thatch and they do have significant value as a fertilizer. A light sprinkling of the lawn is ok to cool it down in hotter, drier weather. Ideally, clippings should form a finelycut, light covering.
Research has shown that most soils in minnesota contain adequate levels for plant growth. What would you guess the nitrogen percentage would be if the clippings were used as a. Returning grass clippings to the turfsoil ecosystem can reduce n. Grass clippings use a mulching mower to return clippings to the lawn. If you return the clippings, lawns older than 10 years may not need any fertilizer. One estimate shows that returning grass clippings can contribute about two pounds of nitrogen per square feet a year. Recycling grass clippings offers an easy way to add nitrogen to a lawn. On the right side of the first line it says grass watered clippings removed this is information you supplied on the soil sample information sheet when you sent in your sample. The ratio of carbon to nitrogen in the compost pile will affect.
During decomposition they release valuable nutrients. Higher amounts of nitrogen in lawn maintenance fertilizers reflect a turfgrass plants greater need for this nutrient. Buy products related to nitrogen lawn products and see what customers say about nitrogen lawn products on free delivery possible on eligible purchases. Return grass clippings to minimize the need for phosphorus fertilizer and reduce the need for nitrogen by 25 to 50 percent. Mulch mowing does not contribute to thatch buildup.209 822 1366 137 1572 397 875 1514 1296 103 183 391 63 1378 6 16 526 750 112 629 990 367 362 1244 1425 1066 1599 1265 441 1143 966 1123 633 648 342 956 33 337 1054 868 236