If you've just reseeded your lawn and are looking to give it a boost, consider using fertilizer, such as Miracle-Gro, on the grass seed. Fertilization is a great way to keep your lawn healthy, but it isn't an instant or immediate fix for new grass. Instead, the results you see will depend on your natural soil composition and quality, the types of grass with which your lawn is seeded and whether you've applied the plant feed correctly.
Miracle-Gro Fertilizer for Grass
Miracle-Gro has a water-soluble fertilizer that's made specifically for use on grass lawns. If used with its brand-specific feeding system, Miracle-Gro Lawn Food can cover up to 7,200 square feet of yard and is designed for use with all types of grass. It can also be premixed in a watering can at a ratio of 1 tablespoon of Lawn Food for each gallon of water.
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The instructions for watering newly seeded grass advise you to use 1 gallon of the Lawn Food mixture for every 30 square feet of yard. For example, a small yard of 5,000 square feet would require 166 gallons of the product.
This is the real reason Miracle-Gro suggests the use of its hose attachment garden feeder. Using the garden feeder attachment, you can expect to cover about 1,800 square feet of yard in about 12 minutes. This should be applied once every two weeks until the new grass is established, at which point you should switch to 1 gallon for every 15 square feet of yard every two to three weeks.
Important Application Considerations
Miracle-Gro needs to be more dilute when applied to new grass seed. Using too much water-soluble fertilizer for lawns can cause what's called fertilizer burn. This occurs when patches of grass grow withered, brown and yellow. The growth of new seed may be terminated depending on how much is applied.
Since new seed is more delicate than an established lawn, it needs a lighter application of fertilizer. This may seem counterintuitive, but new grass is more vulnerable to fertilizer burn.
Types of Miracle-Gro Fertilizer
Pay attention to the composition of the fertilizer you're applying. These compositions are usually given in a ratio of the amount of nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P) and potassium (K), which are the three major components of all kinds of fertilizers and plant foods. For lawn grass, nitrogen is the most important component. Most experts recommend a 3-1-2 or 4-1-2 ratio of N-P-K in a lawn fertilizer. The usual suggested target for mature grass is 1 pound of nitrogen per every 1,000 square feet of lawn. You can back-calculate how much fertilizer you'll need using the amount of nitrogen and that guideline.
Miracle-Gro's Lawn Food ratio is 36-0-6, which calculates down to a 6-0-1 ratio. Miracle-Gro has far more nitrogen than the standard. This means Lawn Food will be able to reach the recommended amount of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet using less product. However, if you aren't paying attention during the application, you could easily overnitrogenate your lawn, especially if your natural soil is already high in nitrogen. Proper dilution of the product is important for newly seeded areas.
In comparison, Miracle-Gro's All Purpose Plant Food has a composition of 24-8-16, which reduces down to a 3-1-2 ratio. In order to decide which product to use, you may need to look into the natural composition of your yard's soil to avoid the dreaded fertilizer burn.