First Time Lawn Owner Help

Lobster1March 27, 2013

Hello all,

I recently moved into a house with a lawn for the first time and I am trying to put together a comprehensive lawn maintenance plan. I am in Northern New Jersey and I am trying to figure out what to do and when to do it.

Specifically I want to know when to feed, fertilize, overseed, mow, deal with weeds and pests, aerate, etc. Then the follw-up is what products I need to use to do it all.

If anyone could help me with a really detailed schedule or where to find one that also helps me with the products it would be so incredibly helpful as I am really feeling lost at the moment. If it helps, I have a young child and a dog.

Thanks in advance for the help.


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I would suggest you get a soil test ASAP (logan labs in ohio will do it for $20 and you'll get the results in about 3 days via e-mail). It will save you chasing your tail if there are major soil problems.

Apply a pre-emergent like Dimension to prevent weed seed (crabgrass) from germinating. This should be applied once the soil temperature gets to 55-60 degrees. A visual indicator is to watch for forsythia plants to bloom, then drop the pre-m. (if you are aerating, aerate prior to dropping a pre-m--aerate only if needed, just as you don't mow if it doesn't need it)
Spot treat weeds with WBG or similar--you can do this from late spring through fall weather and temps permitting.
Mow the lawn as needed at a height between 2 1/2-3", but mow often enough that you do not remove more than 1/3 of the blade.
Apply 1/2-1# per 1000 sq. ft of a slow release nitrogen fertilizer ( you could use a triple NPK) between the last week of May and the first week of June.
As summer heat begins to set in (end of June-beginning of July), raise the mower to 3 1/2 to 4".
Late August/early September, apply 1# of N per k of slow release N.
Early Sept (once temps drop form summer like) set mower height to 2 1/2-3"
Aerate if needed Sept-October--but early enough that the grass is still growing and repair itself.)
Overseed late august to September. Some overseed after aeration.
Early October, apply another 1# of slow release N with K (called winterizer by some).
Once the turf ceases top-growth, drop mower height to 2-2 1/2" for a final mow and apply 1# of quick release N- Usually mid Nov-early Dec. (also called winterizing).
You can substitute organic sources for any or all N apps except the final fast release N app.
Apply any other amendments during the year as recommended per soil test.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 5:30PM
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