Backyard Vegetable Gardens: Choosing Fertilizers

When I moved from an apartment into my first house, a vegetable garden in the back yard was my priority. My goal was to plant vegetables in season, then can and freeze any extra for use later. While the goal was lofty, it was clear that I had a lot to learn. Take fertilizer for example. I had no idea that one kind was any better than the other. Fortunately, a kindly neighbor helped me to learn the value of soil analysis, reading the information on the packages before buying any product, and how the nutrients found in the product would affect the growth of different plants. If you are a novice gardener, let me help. I'll tell you what needs to be in that fertilizer, how to spread it properly, and what it will do for your vegetables.

3 Ways To Achieve A Greener Lawn


A green lawn is a sign of a healthy, well-cared for landscape. You can achieve a greener lawn by doing the following 3 things, so your landscape always looks beautiful and inviting.

Mow properly

The best blade for cutting your grass is a rotating one that cuts at an angle. Many traditional lawn mowers cut straight across, which makes the tips of your grass blades brown. You can prevent this by upgrading to a commercial lawn mower or even a hand-push mower that uses rotating blades to keep a lawn short.

It's also important to cut grass when it is dry to prevent damaging the wet blades. Always mow your lawn after the dew is off the ground, and water your grass immediately afterward to protect the freshly-cut blades. If using a lawn mower without a bag, remove the clipped grass from your lawn so you can expose the healthy grass to sun, water, and the oxygen it needs to thrive.

Plant grass for your climate

There are certain species of grass that grow better in cooler weather, as well as summer-weather loving plants that can last in the dead heat of the season. Common cool-weather grasses include: 

  • Bentgrass
  • Bluegrass
  • Ryegrass

Great heat-tolerant grasses include:

  • Bahiagrass
  • Centipedegrass
  • St. Augustinegrass

You can talk to your local agricultural specialist to see which type of grass is best for you to plant to achieve a green lawn. In many cases, you can combine types of grasses together to achieve a uniquely green lawn that is easy to care for in your own weather climate.

Reseed often

As your grass grows, you may notice bald patches in your lawn, or thinning grass that makes the area look uneven. You can reseed your grass at late spring or early summer, tossing grass seed over your existing lawn. Keep the area entirely wet by watering every few hours for several minutes at a time to spur optimum grass growth. You don't have to water when it is very cool with cloud cover, or if it is raining outside. Within a few weeks to a month or so, you should see your grass begin to get thicker and darker.

Having a green lawn can be achieved every season by following a few great tips. In using the right lawn mower, planting climate-friendly grasses, and reseeding when you notice thin, dying, or bald areas in your lawn, you can have a healthy, lush yard that you can love caring for every year.


17 June 2015