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Summer Lawn Feeding Question

June 20, 2016

I get this question this time of year:  Should I feed my lawn during the heat of summer?

My answer:  Depends on where you are located, what kind of lawn you have and how many times you have fed so far this year.  Let me explain.

Since it is best to feed lawns during periods of active growth it helps to know how Southern and Northern lawns grow during summer.  Southern lawns (like Bermuda, St. Augustine, Zoysia, Centipede and Bahia) thrive this time of year, even if daytime highs are consistently in the 90’s and the night temperatures are not that much different.  Northern lawns (like Bluegrass, Fescue and Ryegrass) prefer cooler daytime temps that stay in the 80’s and below.  However they tend to slow their growth if the nighttime temps and humidity don’t drop much from the 90’s during the day.  Cool night temps that drop back into the 60’s at night can do wonders to help Northern lawns continue active growth even during the dog days of summer. 

This Northern lawn is looking very good in August because it has received regular feedings.

This Northern lawn is looking very good in August because it has received regular feedings.

Now that you know how Southern and Northern grasses grow, here is my answer to the summer feeding question:

Southern lawns (like Bermuda, St. Augustine and Zoysia) love to be fed at two month intervals from spring to fall for a total of about 4 feedings a year.  Centipede only likes two or three feedings a year from late spring to late summer. So feed now if it has been a couple of months since your last feeding or if you have only fed your Centipede once so far this year.  Scotts GreenMAX Lawn Food, Scotts Southern Turf Builder or Scotts Natural Lawn Food are good choices for this time of year.

If your Northern lawn has not been fed in a while and you live in an area where night time temps drop, you can give your lawn a feeding now.  If you have already fed your Northern lawn twice this year you can skip feeding until late August or early September.  Scotts GreenMAX Lawn Food, Scotts Turf Builder or Scotts Natural Lawn Food can be used in summer on Northern lawns. 

An alternative feeding choice for both Southern and Northern lawns, if you want to protect your lawn from the insects that cause your lawn to thin and turn brown during summer, is to feed with Scotts Turf Builder SummerGuard.  However, note that this is a lighter feeding than you would get with the other Scotts Lawn Foods I have mentioned here.

 

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2 Comments
  1. Ross permalink

    Hello,

    I live in the Indianapolis area. I furtilized at the end of April and wondered if it was ok to apply Scott’s green max now? Thanks

  2. Hi Ross
    Perfect timing for a feeding of Scotts GreenMAX in your area. It will be best to feed when your mid day temps are below 90. Be sure to water after feeding. Remember to feed again in fall. Two or three fall feedings are recommended in your area.

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