We are often asked how many lawn treatments do I need per year? And we understand the confusion. With so many lawn care companies out there packaging their programs in different ways, it can be very difficult to determine just how often fertilizer (as well as other treatments) should be applied.
While your question might be “how many lawn treatments do I need?,” the question you should really be asking is “what specifically needs to be done throughout the year?” It’s not so much about the number of visits as it is the possible issues that can occur that may need to be diagnosed and addressed.
Oasis’ lawn care program consists of six strategically timed visits from early spring to late fall. This schedule puts our knowledgeable technicians on your property at the optimal time for essential lawn care tasks, and also allows us to monitor potential issues in your yard through the year. Other companies might do things differently, so you really need to understand what it is they’re doing when they’re on your property rather than be distracted by the number of times they’re visiting.
How Many Lawn Treatments Do I Need?
To help you understand what services are important throughout the year, let’s take a look at a timeline of what should happen between early spring and late fall in order to achieve the best lawn results. Often, we will combine products into the fertilizer mix, which allows us to deliver the season-appropriate treatments along with your regular application.
The official beginning of the lawn care season is early spring, and several lawn care treatments are planned to get your yard off to a healthy start for the year. At Oasis, these are the services you can expect in the spring when the timing is right:
- Crabgrass Pre-emergent: We apply a pre-emergent crabgrass control in early spring which will prevent approximately 85% of crabgrass in most lawns.
- Broadleaf Weed Control: We will begin treating broadleaf weeds as early as we can. The specific start time will vary from year to year based on soil temperature, although we try to start in mid- to late-March, and we will continue to address these weeds until late fall. In addition, there may be some winter annuals which have invaded the lawn--as soon as it’s warm enough for good control, we start spraying.
- Fertilizer & Microbiology: Ongoing fertilization begins in the early spring. Along with the fertilizer treatments throughout the year, another item that is continuously added throughout the year with lawn care treatments is micro-biological additives to improve soil health.
- Aeration: In our region, where the soil is predominantly clay, a spring aeration will help your lawn to be more receptive to the nutrients in the fertilization services we’re performing. Most often, however, we will recommend that you delay this service until the fall.
In the late spring, our second visit in your lawn care program will include the following:
- Crabgrass Pre-emergent: While some companies deliver the full dose of crabgrass pre-emergent in a single spring application, our program splits this valuable service into two visits. This two-visit, split-rate approach extends the effectiveness timeframe for the prevention of crabgrass, and allows our method to work better for you than a one-shot application.
- Fertilizer & Microbiology: Lawns grow vigorously in the spring, utilizing large amounts of nutrients. Our second treatment of fertilizer will help maintain your yard’s color as well as reduce certain turf diseases, such as Red Thread. The added microbiological materials will continue to work to improve soil health, so the turf can thicken and naturally crowd out invading weeds.
- Broadleaf Weed Control: Springtime marks the appearance of many types of broadleaf weeds, and our ongoing treatment of weed control materials will ensure the lawn resists these invasive plants.
- Surface Insect Control: In our region Chinch Bugs and Billbugs are the biggest surface insect concern. We begin treatment for these annoying pests during the second visit in late spring, and in most cases after we apply one to two rounds of product, that is all that’s needed to address this particular issue.
As summer arrives, the change in weather can bring new problems for your lawn. At Oasis, here is how we ensure that the early summer is a good season for your yard:
- Fertilizer & Microbiology: The fertilizer we apply now will help your lawn later after the appearance of late summer stresses. Plus, the addition of microbiological materials will continue to help the lawn naturally withstand turf diseases.
- Broadleaf Weed Control: Summer annual weeds will begin to emerge at this time, and spot-treatment will be performed as needed.
- Crabgrass Post-emergent: While the pre-emergent application will have taken care of the growth of any widespread crabgrass problem, a post-emergent spray can control any crabgrass breakthrough that may have emerged, such as in thinner areas and along pavement edges.
- Preventative Grub Control: We typically perform a single preventative application of grub control on the third visit, between late May and late June, providing season-long protection against these destructive lawn pests.
- Nutsedge Control: If your lawn is prone to the development of nutsedge, we will begin spot-treating this grassy weed in early summer during the third visit.
- Surface Insect Control: In some rare cases, lawns may still experience pressure from Chinch Bugs and Billbugs into the summer. We will monitor your lawn throughout this time and if we discover ongoing surface insect trouble, we will treat accordingly.
Late summer is a difficult time for your lawn. In addition to the possibility of drought stress, many other factors can negatively impact your lawn in its seasonal weakened state. At Oasis, here is how we help your yard during these stressful months:
- Fertilizer & Microbiology: The late summer application of fertilizer will help maintain your health and vigor of the lawn during these stressful months.
- Broadleaf Weed Control: The tough, summer annual weeds may appear near edges or thinner areas, so our spot-treating will discourage them from spreading.
- Surface Insect Control: If an inspection shows that Chinch Bugs and Billbugs continue to be an issue, our lawn care technicians will treat as needed.
- Crabgrass Post-emergent: Tenacious crabgrass may still emerge along pavement edges and weakened spots, but our spot-treating with a post-emergent application will help keep it from spreading.
- Nutsedge Control: Nutsedge may continue to appear and spot-treatment will be performed to keep it under control.
As the weather becomes milder and the temperatures cool, your lawn still needs important services. At Oasis, here is how we help your lawn meet the changing season:
- Fertilizer & Miocrobiology: Nutrients and microbiological materials combine to repair your lawn from summer stresses, and to improve color and vigor.
- Broadleaf Weed Control: As the season cools, more broadleaf weeds may appear. Fortunately, fall is the best time to get good control of weeds, particularly with some of the harder to control weeds. Our technicians will inspect and treat any new weeds as needed.
- Curative Grub Control: If you began your lawn care program with us after we had already completed the annual preventative grub control application, your lawn could be susceptible to grub damage. If so, this damage will start to appear in late summer into the fall. We can provide a curative grub control treatment to keep grubs from feeding. If extensive damage has occurred due to a missed preventative application, you may need our seeding services to repair these areas in the fall.
- Aeration and Overseeding: Fall is the recommended time to aerate and overseed. The temperature and weather conditions are ideal for new germination, so we schedule our aeration and overseeding services from September through mid-October.
The outdoor season in Ohio and Northern Kentucky comes to a in the late fall but we will plan your property’s final visit as late as we possibly can in order to give you the most value for your lawn care investment. At Oasis, here is how we prepare your yard for the approaching winter season:
- Fertilizer & Microbiology: The application of nutrients and natural materials will encourage deeper and healthier roots, helping your lawn be more resilient during and after the colder winter months.
- Broadleaf Weed Control: We treat broadleaf weeds as long as the weather permits. Often, that has meant our final round of applications is in late November or even early December, when tough weeds like wild violets can be controlled with special formulations designed for use in cooler temperatures.
So: How Often Should My Lawn be Fertilized?
You may ask: do I really need all of that fertilizer? Regardless of what other issues there may be on your yard, your lawn will always need certain amounts of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium throughout the year to thrive. Depriving your lawn of these nutrients will lead to a slow decline in its health.
People sometimes want to omit fertilizer treatments because they believe the more the lawn is fertilized, the more it will need to be mowed. However, the best way to ensure that you have a thick and healthy lawn is to make sure it has the nutrients it needs available. At Oasis, our slow-release granular fertilizer and other valuable treatments are designed to deliver the required amount of these nutrients, with an emphasis on soil health and sustained root growth, without the quick-grow short-term effects you might experience with other lawn treatments.
Giving Your Lawn What It Needs to Thrive
As you come to understand what services are important throughout the year, you’ll probably realize that the questions about how many visits and how many times to fertilize a lawn may be the wrong questions to ask. Instead, you will see that a valuable program focuses on what the lawn needs rather than a certain number of visits or applications. We hope that this timeline gives you a foundation for understanding what services should be performed and when they should be done.
At Oasis Turf & Tree, we believe that these six valuable visits to your property per season allows us to diagnose issues and perform of all the treatments that will address your lawn’s needs. It’s all about a customized approach.
While we are diligent about catching developing problems when we’re there, we are also aware that issues can arise between our visits. That’s one reason why we value communication from our customers so highly; we appreciate when they call us anytime an issue has arisen since our last visit-- we would always rather treat a problem early than let it go until our next time on the property. A quick response is better for your lawn, it's better for your enjoyment of your yard, and it's better for us as we work to provide you with the best results possible.
If you would like to find out more about our lawn care program options and how they can improve your lawn in Cincinnati, Dayton, OH or Northern Kentucky, call 513-697-9090 or contact us for a free estimate.