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HomeExpert AdviceShould I Fertilize the Lawn in Fall? Learn Why It's Important

Should I Fertilize the Lawn in Fall? Learn Why It’s Important

We all know that lawn fertilizing is a must for any lawn owner. And we have to fertilize it about four to six times a year. Here, the question is when is the best time to apply fertilizer. Undoubtedly, most professionals will answer that Fall is the best time to fertilize the lawn.

Out of all seasons, why does it have to be Fall? I saw many people are already confused about this fact. Well, if you are one of them, I suggest you spend a few minutes checking the content till the end.

If you never apply fertilizer in the Fall, you must be ignorant of its benefits. And today we’ll discuss everything about it. That’s why I suggest you concentrate. Instead of adding more words, let’s jump to the benefits of fertilizing the lawn in the Fall.

Why Is It Important to Fertilize the Lawn in Fall?

Why Is It Important to Fertilize the Lawn in FallFall is the best time to take necessary actions to prepare your lawn for the upcoming Winter. Cooler seasons always prevent the growth of grass. And medicating them in the Fall might bring you a lush green carpet after the chills get over.

In Fall, the grassroots stay active because the soil temperature stays warmer than the average air temperature. The upper part of the grass blades usually does their photosynthesis. As they turn sunshine into food, it promptly gets handed over from leaves to roots.

However, there are a lot of reasons professionals will tell you to feed your lawn in the Fall. Do you want me to specify the reasons? Have a look at these benefits of fertilizing your lawn in the Fall that might help you understand the fact clearly.

  • The deposited food made in Fall will be later used in Spring, especially when the photosynthesis is a bit hard. This time is crucial, and your lawn needs enough food to survive a hard time.
  • During Fall, the air temperature shortens its heat by at least 20 to 30 degrees. It helps the grass to generate more oxygen. And that’s why fertilizers will be used the most of it.
  • Fertilizing your lawn in Fall will help to nourish the roots and allow it to extend and grow healthier and wider. It becomes effective at this time because of the appropriate atmosphere.
  • Cool-season grass normally grows to the peak during Fall. So, feeding them during this time will only help the grassroots to imbibe the fertilizer.
  • Fall’s morning dew brings more moisture to co-operate in fertilizer feeding to the grass.
  • Naturally, grasses gather all their stamina right before the winter season. So, if you manage to fertilize the lawn in the Fall, it will have more stamina and disease resistance capability.

So, these are the significant reasons you should fertilize the lawn in Fall. I am sure that you have already got your reason for doing it. However, there is something essential about Fall fertilizer you should know for sure. So, don’t skip the following parts.

Best Time to Fertilize the Lawn in Fall

Best Time to Fertilize the Lawn in FallPrimarily, the best time to fertilize is right before the ground freezes. The approximate time is 2 to 3 weeks before Winter. More specifically, the considerable time is mid-October to apply lawn fertilizer. And for cool-season lawns, the perfect time is from September to early November.

The best time of the day is early in the morning and evening. The reason is that by this time, the warm temperature of daytime subsides, so there is no catalyst left to work contrary to the fertilizer.

It is suggested to make the lawn a clean slate right before applying the fertilizer. However, you can keep some grass clipping behind because it might help the roots. Another thing you should remember is that heavy rainfall can runoff the applied fertilizer. Therefore, it will be wise to check the weather forecast and even if it rains, just wait till the glass blades get dry before fertilizing.

What Kind of Fertilizer Should You Choose to Feed Your Lawn in Fall?

What Kind of Fertilizer Should You ChooseThe type of fertilizer primarily depends on the type of your region’s lawn turf and soil types. In areas with acidic soil, people usually apply dolomitic lime. It is because too much acidity in soil obstructs the way to absorb nutrients.

In this case, a lawn soil test is the only certain way to check if the soil needs lime or not. Likewise, poor grass growth and moss are major signs to check the soil’s acidity.

In addition, in Colder regions, you will mostly find winter fertilizer. This kind of fertilizer consists of slow-release nitrogen, which helps the nutrients to release gradually to the grassroots. These bags include a richer amount of nitrogen and a very minimum amount of Potassium and Phosphorus. The ratio might be similar to 10-0-20 or 32-0-10.

Lawn Fertilizing Tips for Fall

Lastly, I would like to share some of the essential tips you should follow to fertilize in Fall. These tips will help you make the fertilizers work effectively. So, make sure to follow the tips when you will apply fertilizer on your lawn in Fall.

1. Clean Your Lawn Before Applying Fertilizer

Clean Your Lawn Before Applying FertilizerNormally, Debris and bunches of dry leaves obstruct the fertilizer from reaching into the roots properly. And you must know Fall resembles falling dry leaves. For those obstacles, the fertilizers simply stuck between the grass blades. Therefore, it is best to apply fertilizer on a clear lawn during Fall. So, make sure to clean your lawn properly before you apply it.

2. Hold Over for Rain

Hold Over for RainIn the Fall, rain is not a rare case. You can just expect rain anytime in the day. And if it rains right after you add fertilizer on the lawn, the rainwater can wash them up. So, it won’t work for your lawn. So, make sure to check the weather forecast to ensure that there is no rain for one or two days so that you won’t have a risk of wasting the lawn food that may get washed away before entering the roots.

Then what if it’s already raining? Well, in this case, you have to wait. Remember that fertilizing your lawn soil is more effective when you put it in moist soil. So, wait till the soil absorbs the rain. And then you can apply the fertilizer only if there is no chance to have rain one more time on the day.

3. Read the Instructions on the Bag of the Fertilizer carefully

Read the Instructions on the BagThere are varieties of fertilizers on the market. Do you think all of them are suitable for your lawn to apply in Fall? Of course not. In each fertilizer bag, you will find application tips, specific timetables, and instructions to apply.

So, make sure to check them properly so that you can choose the right fertilizer for your lawn and apply it in the right way. It is also essential because the fertilizer materials often get changed due to formulation technology; thus, reviewing the label is crucial.

4. Pick a Spreader for Evenly Fertilizing

Pick a Spreader for Evenly FertilizingIt is very difficult to spread fertilizer on the lawn evenly by hand. Excessive fertilizer in a part of your lawn can be disastrous. So, it would help if you used a spreader to fertilize the lawn evenly.

Generally, a Rotary spreader is effective in a broad lawn area. And in smaller lawns, the best option is a drop spreader. Another thing is a handheld spreader which is useful on tiny lawns. So, choose the right lawn fertilizer spreader and use it while applying the right fertilizer to the lawn.

These are the essential tips to remember while fertilizing the lawn in Fall. While applying fertilizer, you can find that some fertilizer is out of the lawn on the hard space. If there are any, make sure to blow them into the lawns. Besides, walking on your lawn gently in the same spread will help you spread the fertilizer evenly.


Q: Is it possible to put fertilizer on the lawn in late Fall?

A: Yes, if you fail to fertilize the lawn in the early Fall, you can do it in late Fall. The ideal time is between August 15 to October 1. Considering the situation, it is ideal for fertilizing just six to eight weeks before the first snow in your place.

Q: Is October too late to fertilize the lawn?

A: Yes and No. It depends on the first snowfall in your area. So, late in October in some regions might be a little late, but Mid-October is the rounded time in most places. However, you have to fertilize it at least six to eight weeks before the first snowfall starts.

Q: Can I apply fertilizer and seed at the same time during Fall?

A: You shouldn’t apply fertilizer and seeds on your lawn at the same time. It will definitely create a mess when applying fertilizer and seed altogether. The reason is that the seedings will get burned by additional fertilizer. Also, the unbalanced materials will result in patches on your lawn.

Q: What should I do first in the Fall, fertilize or apply seeds?

A: It is suggested to apply fertilizer in the first place before seeding. Although both Fall and Spring are the best seasons for seeding, fertilizer takes the most priority in Fall. And you should wait a few days after applying fertilizer on the lawn before you spread the seeds.

Q: Does the lawn need watering right after fertilizing?

A: In most cases, you should water the lawn after applying fertilizer, especially if you are using granule fertilizers. Initially, it depends on the types of fertilizer. If it is granular, then you must water it right away. And if it is liquid, then wait at least 2 to 4 hours. Another thing is, if you put weed killer, you have to wait till it dries. Otherwise, water will wash away everything.

Bottom Line

Fall is always considered the best time to feed your lawn. You can rely on your DIY homemade lawn fertilizers for the rest of the time in the year. But you should buy a suitable fertilizer from the shop at least to use in Fall. I am sure that you now have enough idea about why it is essential to fertilize your lawn in the Fall.

The food you are feeding your lawn in the Fall will keep it healthy in the toughest time in Winter. So, you should never miss a Fall in your life having a lawn without fertilizing it. Otherwise, your beautiful green lawn may not be happy with you.

Well, it’s time to take my leave here. Next time, I will give you some ideas about seasonal lawn care tips. So, if you don’t want to miss them, stay connected. Also, you can share your feedback right on the comment box and share this content with your friends with a new lawn. Thank you.

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