Fall Lawns - Seed & Fertilizer

It’s time to think about the fall lawn – seeding and fertilizing. Now is when the days get shorter and the temperatures get cooler. It may seem strange, but fall is actually the best time to make improvements to your lawn. If you seed and feed the lawn in fall, you will establish the foundation for 
Lawn aerator
a thicker and healthier lawn in the spring.
 
Seed
As turfgrass matures, the rate at which it spreads to create a thick, dense lawn slows. It is important to keep a consistent overseeding routine to prevent bare spots or a thinning lawn. New grass seedlings fill in the gaps and spread quickly to reduce weeds. 
Introducing new seed varieties each year, will also help the lawn fight off any future attacks by disease, insects or drought.

Prepare The Area
  1. Remove lawn debris. (Sticks, leaves, stones, etc.)
  2. Prepare the soil for seeding to maximize germination. Considering dethatching the lawn with a simple yard rake, a tow-behind attachment on your rider lawnmower or a standalone unit known as a power rake, obtained from an equipment rental store. 
  3. If your soil is compacted, consider aerating it. Otherwise, it will be difficult for seedlings to take root and absorb nutrients. Like the power rake, you can rent an aerator at your local equipment store or contact a lawn care professional to provide this stand-alone service. (See our article on Preparing the Lawn for Aeration). 
Grass Seeds
Sowing Seeds
You can apply seed by hand, or with a handheld spreader, a push spreader, a tow-behind spreader or a power seeder (also known as a slit seeder). Spreading seed by hand or using a handheld spreader is great for tight spaces and around landscaping. Large areas are best covered with a broadcast push spreader, which will cover the most ground in a single pass. Power seeders can be rented from home improvement centers as needed.

Seed Types & Application Rates
 
  1. Determine the seed blend that works for you by assessing how much sunlight your lawn gets. Is it in sun, shade or a combination?
  2. Is your lawn used heavily by children and pets, or is it more of an aesthetic lawn?
  3. Does the area you live in experience frequent droughts?
  4. How many square feet of lawn will you be overseeding?
  5. How many pounds of grass seed per 1,000 square feet do the instructions on the bag recommend? Multiply the square feet of lawn space by the number of pounds per 1,000 square feet to determine how many pounds of grass seed you will need.
Seed spreader for healthy natural grass
Unsure of which grass seed to use or how much you need? No problem. Call us at 888-546-5941, and one of our customer care specialists will help you. 
 
Feed
Once you apply the seed, it needs food and water to grow. For fall seeding, a “starter” fertilizer like Recuperator 7-10-4 with higher concentrations of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium is recommended. While starter fertilizers contain higher levels of nutrients they are water soluble and formulated so they do not burn the young grass seed plants.
 
Water frequently and lightly in order to keep the seeds and soil moist, but not soaked. After about two weeks, or when the new seedlings have grown about two inches, you may mow the grass. Be sure to use a sharp blade to prevent pulling seedlings out. 

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Clippings from our customers

Winter is closing in fast in New Hampshire. That's ok with me, as I can't wait to go ice fishing. Hard to stay ahead of all the oak leaves coming down. The lawn looks great after the lime and the September and October applications. Can't wait to see how it looks next year. Check Out His Video

Bill J. – Bedford, NH

Best fertilizer I have used.

J Burnett – Lowell, MA

I live where the soil is already high in phosphorus (the middle number) and it’s hard to find any with none locally. I buy one of these (Fall Fertilizer Application 4) each season and they are well worth the cost. My neighbors all say my yard is looking much better than under the prior homeowner.

Stacie W. – Fort Worth, TX

…The only thing better than your products are the people behind them. You [all] are the best!!

Steve D. – Merrimack, NH

We will continue to use [Protilizer & 5-5-5] with great enthusiasm. We swept the Court of Honor in every rose show where we exhibited, including the National Rose Show.

John & Cherylynn Smith, National Rose Association First Place Winner – Westminster, MD

We grow 200 varieties of hot peppers and 150 heirloom tomatoes. We used Protilizer and saw no phytophthora root disease; our crop yields were higher; we had better root development; and the plants just looked healthier than they have in years. The fact that Protilizer is organic and OMRI listed is a bonus. Thank you for your help and support throughout my trials.

James Weaver, Meadow View Farms – Kutztown, PA

I will continue to be a loyal supporter of Natural Alternative products. Your bacteria based products are unmatched in the industry.

Darryl Schultz, Bud Shultz Garden Center – Dunmore, PA

I am a vegetable and annual grower. I recently started using your Protilizer Seed & Plant Starter on my annual nursery stock. The results exceeded my expectations. My Impatiens, Petunias, Marigolds were healthy and disease free. The root development was the best I have ever seen. This year I am also trying it in my strawberry fields.

John Stoltzfus, Brandywine Produce – Honey Brook, PA

We are pleased with the results we’re getting with Protilizer on our pansy crop. We did not have any stem disease for the first time in years. Please send me another 6 jugs. We need it for our poinsettias.

Kenneth Miller, Milmont Greenhouses – Waynesboro, VA

As a grower/retailer we use Natural Alternative Protilizer and 5-5-5 plant food in our growing operations to maintain top quality plants in our retail stores. We have reduced our use of fungicides for root diseases to almost zero. During the hot summer months, our customers remark that our plants look so healthy for the middle of summer.

Jim Glick, Ken’s Gardens – Lancaster County, PA

Thank you all for your help and recommendations. I appreciate the time you spent on the phone with me to work toward a solution for my lawn. You have been a tremendous help. What terrific customer service!

J. Jackson – Columbus, Ohio

Again, I want to thank you for the awesome service you have given us this season. I very much appreciate it.

Lee Roeder, Strosniders – Bethesda, MD

The ice melt worked great! We already put some down for the storm that missed us last week, and yesterday morning when I checked the area it was covered with sleet with the exception of the areas we treated with the ice melt. [Thanks for] your quality service and the great product you provide.

Andrew C. Lee, Capitol Hill Business Improvement District – Washington, DC

We love the [Natural Alternative Ice Melt] product and have for years. We will keep pushing it!

Craig S. Co-Owner – Twins Ace Hardware, Fairfax, VA 22030

I just wanted to thank you for the great products that Natural Alternatives produces. I did cut my lawn last Saturday and got all the leaves up and early Sunday morning applied the last Winter Fertilizer. I have been so pleased with your products for the lawn and for my flower beds and tomato plants. My lawn looks like green velvet. I have two dogs and am very careful as to what products I apply to my lawn and gardens. Thank you also for the "computer reminders" that you send out. They are very helpful.

Peggy S. – Laconia, NH

Thank you and your staff SO MUCH for getting us an order of ice melt today. You've made not only our customers, but staff (who is always eager to please), very happy! It's that kind of service and attention that will have us coming back to you!

Robbie Kaplan, Ace Hardware – Washington, DC

We [used your] ice melt today and it worked much better than what we were using before.

Thomas Beaver, General Growth Properties – Columbia, MD