which lawn fertilizer to use?

I have been trying to upgrade my front lawn. Last month I reseeded a 10'x10' bald area, and it's starting to look pretty good. I might even mow the area for the first time next week. I've been reading that one has to fertilize the lawn regularly to nourish the lawn and discourage weeds. Someone suggested that the best fertilizer would be a 16x16x16 mix with lime. Is that right? Would it be ok to apply it to the newly reseeded area too? I live in Western Washington, where we get more rain than most. In fact it's drizzling right now. Thanks for any advice.
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You dont have to fertilise in a wet area to have a good lawn rain does that, fertilise and it will grow twice as fast. I rarely fertilise , I did not last year and I had to cut only every month in heavy shade. I have fertilised and made it grow where it needed 6 cuttings in a month. Don`t fertilise if you must till after a few cuttings, I would not use weed killer till its needed , let the lawn get strong .
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I suggest that you contact your local county extension office. They will give you free, good advice without being tainted with the pressure to sell you something.
In my area, it is best to fertilize in the fall and maybe a little in the spring but nothing during the summer. But each area is different. The lawn products people want you to fertilize early and often, often causing more damage than good for your lawn. Too much fertilizer or fertilizer at the wrong time is a bad ideal and hard on a lawn, even though it may make it nice an green and healthy looking for a week or two.
You should also have your soil tested as that will provide the information the country extension agents can use to advise you. They will be able to help you out with that as well.
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If you haven't fertilized at all this year, I'd apply a starter fertilizer, which has less N and more P and K to promote root growth. You can also use the starter on the whole lawn or you can use a regular slow release lawn fertilizer on the rest of it. To know if you need lime, you need to test the soil. There are home kits available, or you can have it tested for you.
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What ever you do leave your clippings to go back to the soil.A fertilizer with weed killer to kill say dandelions also kills clover. Clover is a legume that takes nitrogen from the air and adds it to your soil. Clover is good unless the bees are a problem.
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I fertilize in the fall only. In the fall grass puts its energy into root growth, in spring blade growth. Sure if you fertilize in the spring your lawn will have darker green color, but you will be mowing frequently. In damp climates lots of blade growth can also lead to mildew and fungus problems. There also tends to be more weed growth in the spring so avoid helping them out. Sometimes I apply broadleaf weed killer in the spring if the dandelions and clover are getting out of control.

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Jeff wrote:

Most county agents will not recommend fall fertilizing. It promotes new growth just prior to freezes which is detrimental to grasses. It's best to let the grass toughen up for the winter months. If your lawn has been kept in good shape over the summer, it does not need "root energy" in the fall. (Contrary to fertilizer manufacturers literature since they want year round sales).
Bob S. (A master gardener who works with the county agent)
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Bob S. wrote:

Just about every credible reference I've ever seen recommends fertilizing in the fall. I do it twice here in NJ, once in Sept, again in mid Oct. My lawn looks great all Fall, stays green into Feb and greens right up again in Mar.
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Well, here in east TN the grass of choice is tall fescue and the best time to fertilize is in the fall. The roots feed throughout the winter. Late spring and summer feeding is not recommended because we have hot summer droughts that sometimes last up to two months. Fescue grass goes dormant during the summer, often turning brown. I used to live in Cleveland, OH where lawn feeding includes summer, but there the grass used was Kentucky bluegrass. A book about lawn care should be geared toward a specific region.
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wrote in message

Freezing is not a big issue in western Washington.
Bob
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On 5/23/2006 11:28 PM or thereabouts, Bob S. appears, somewhat unbelievably, to have opined:

This really depends on what type of grass you are fertilizing. Cool season grasses (fescue, bluegrass, etc.) really need to be fertilized in the fall as this is the time they grow the fastest. Warm season grasses (bermuda, buffalo, st. augustine, etc.) do not as they go dormant through the winter.
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tenplay wrote:

When you mow use a mulching mower. Do NOT bag the clippings.
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I would not try to mix them. Just apply one, then the other. Use a time release fertilizer. The regular lawn fertilizers should work fine. The 16x16x16 is likely not time-release. I use a lighter than recommended dose, a little more often than recommended. Don't fertilize much during the summer unless you will keep up on watering. Water heavily once a week rather than more often, to make the roots grow deeply. Fertilizing during this wet spell should be good, but don't fertilize the new area until it's had a few mowings. And don't mow it until it is 3" tall. I control weeds with weed-b-gon in a handheld spray bottle. Just spray the weeds. Don't forget to use a fall fertilizer in the fall - that's the most important time to fertilize.
Bob
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tenplay wrote:

Appreciate all of your responses. It sounds like almost all of you recommend fertilizing in the fall with regular lawn fertilizer. Also I will continue to mow on the high side and leave the cuttings on the ground. And it sounds like, if I keep a healthy and thick lawn, I won't have to apply any weed treatments. Feel free to comment if I didn't understand correctly.
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