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Is your lawn looking a little brown? If your lawn is patchy or uneven, you might benefit from professional fertilization services. Fertilizing services can help repair lawn damage and encourage grass growth, keeping your property looking healthy and lush. But there are many professional fertilization services out there — and they’re far from the same.
Not every lawn care service is equally as efficient at fertilizing your lawn. Not every company offers every service, and you may find that each provider’s customer service, offerings, and price list vary widely.
In This Article:
- What is Lawn Fertilizer Service?
- When Should I Fertilize?
- Does My Grass Type Affect My Fertilization?
- Why Professional Lawn Fertilization May Be Right for You
- Top Recommended National Provider: TruGreen
- Frequently Asked Questions
We’ve thoroughly reviewed the country’s largest lawn fertilization providers and compared them based on cost, service offerings, customer service, and more. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the benefits of lawn fertilizer and who professional fertilizing services are right for.
What is Lawn Fertilizer Service?
As the name suggests, a lawn fertilizer service is a lawn care company that fertilizes your grass. Fertilizing is an effective way to keep your lawn healthy and green and to provide it with the nutrients it needs to grow during the spring and summer.
Grass seeds depend on nutrients in your soil to grow. Nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium help your grass seeds grow deeper roots, maintain healthy chlorophyll cells, and resist disease.
Over time, your lawn may suck all of the nutrients out of your lawn’s soil. This can leave your lawn struggling to flourish because it doesn’t have the “food” it needs to maintain a healthy green exterior. If you notice that your lawn is looking patchy or dull, it’s probably because your grass has leached all of your soil’s nutrients. Fertilizer can help fix this problem and restore the green lawn you love.
Types of Lawn Fertilizers
There are many different types of fertilizer. Some of the most common options you’ll see from lawn fertilizer services may include:
- Enriched — Enriched fertilizer is a catalyst that helps condition your soil and help your grass seeds absorb nutrients more effectively.
- Quick-release — Also known as “water-soluble fertilizer,” quick-release fertilizer provides plants with nitrogen immediately. These fertilizers last between 3 to 4 weeks, depending on the temperature.
- Slow-release — Slow-release fertilizers provide your lawn with a steady stream of nutrients for up to 12 weeks. Slow-release fertilizer is recommended if you have an irrigation system in your lawn because they aren’t as easily washed away when you activate your system.
- Liquid fertilizer — Liquid fertilizer is a nitrogen-based growth solution designed for quick absorption. If you use liquid fertilizer, be careful not to over-fertilize. Applying too much liquid fertilizer is likely to cause burning.
- Pre-emergent — Pre-emergent solutions aren’t technically a form of fertilizer because they don’t enrich your soil directly. However, they play an important role in preventing crabgrass from springing up in your yard. If you have a lawn that’s prone to weeds, pre-emergent can be an effective fertilization for weed control.
Types of Lawn Fertilization Equipment
Just like there are multiple types of lawn fertilizers, there are also multiple types of lawn fertilizer equipment. Here are some of the tools that you might see your lawn care technician using when servicing lawns.
- Granular spreader — Most types of fertilizers are sold in granular form. A granular spreader ensures that the fertilizer is evenly distributed throughout your lawn.
- Electric hand spreader — If your fertilizing company is using liquid fertilizer, you might see your technician using an automatic electric hand spreader. Like a granular spreader, this tool makes sure that your fertilizer makes it to every corner of your lawn.
- Pressurized herbicide sprayer — You don’t want to apply fertilizer when you have weeds in your lawn. Failing to remove weeds before spreading fertilizer can cause the weeds to steal the fertilizer’s nutrients, robbing your grass seeds. Fertilizer and weed removal go hand-in-hand — so it’s likely that you’ll see your technician spraying a liquid herbicide with a pressurized sprayer before seeding.
When Should I Fertilize?
When should you hire a lawn care company to fertilize your soil? The best time to fertilize is when your grass is still growing and storing nutrients. Here’s when to fertilize your lawn in each season for maximum growth.
- Fall — Early fall fertilization can set your grass up for better sustenance through the winter. Apply a nitrogen-rich fertilizer around Labor Day to give your seeds plenty of time to store nutrients before the coming cold months.
- Spring — Spring is the second-most important time to fertilize because it comes right after winter. When your lawn “wakes up” after a season of dormancy, it will be hungry for more nutrients. Fertilize as soon as 50% of your lawn is green to help your grass recover from the cold effectively.
- Summer — Thanks to drought and extreme heat, summer can be a tough season for your lawn. Feeding your lawn with slow-release fertilizer at the beginning of summer can help your grass survive until the early fall rain arrives.
Does My Grass Type Affect My Fertilization?
Definitely. Different types of grasses have different nutritional needs. Let’s take a look at some of the most common grasses in the United States and examine how your grass might affect your lawn fertilization needs.
- Kentucky Bluegrass, Ryegrass, and Fine Fescue Mix — One of the most common grasses in the United States, this blend can flourish in almost every state. It’s also hardier than other types of grasses, which can mean less watering and fertilization.
- Rye — Another very common grass, Rye seeds produce a shiny, rich lawn. Though it can grow in any part of the country, it requires adequate sunlight and more fertilizer than other grass types.
- Kentucky Bluegrass — Kentucky Bluegrass is a hardy, dense type of grass found in cooler U.S. climates. It requires the most fertilization during early fall, when the grass bulks up its roots for winter.
- Bermuda — A summer grass found only in the southern United States, Bermuda grass seeds are self-repairing and thrive in warm climates. The seeds require fertilization when shady seasons take over.
Not sure what type of grass you have? A professional lawn care company will be able to tell you. They’ll also be able to create a customized service plan that fits the unique fertilization needs of your grass type. This is one of the many reasons why professional fertilizer services are so important.
Why Professional Lawn Fertilization May Be Right for You
Professional lawn fertilization is a great option for most homeowners concerned about the quality of their grass. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits you’ll receive when you use a professional fertilizer service like TruGreen or Lawn Doctor to handle your fertilization instead of DIY-ing.
- More accurate administration — Lawn care companies know how to apply fertilizer to your lawn without burning or harming your grass.
- Convenience — Most people don’t have the time to tend to their lawn as much as they’d like. Hiring a professional fertilizer service can make sure your lawn gets the treatments it needs without your spending hours shopping and administering the products.
- Better customization — Different breeds of grass have different fertilization needs. When you hire a professional lawn care company, you don’t need to guess which type of grass you have or what your grass needs.
- Saves time and stress — Professional lawn fertilizers know what they’re doing and how to use their tools. Unless you happen to have a set of fertilization tools at your disposal, they’ll most likely be able to finish the job faster.
How Much Does Lawn Fertilization Service Cost?
According to Quicken Loans, the average homeowner will pay about $30 to $60 per visit from a fertilizer service. However, the specific amount you’ll pay will depend on a variety of factors. Some of the factors that play a role in determining how much you’ll pay for fertilizing services include:
- Lawn size — If you have a larger lawn, you’ll pay more for service.
- Home location — If you live in a very rural area, you might need to pay your lawn maintenance company more in the form of a travel fee.
- Local climate — If you live in a very dry area or in an area with poor soil quality, you might pay more for fertilizing services because you’ll require more visits.
- Your property shape — If you have a property with unusual boundary lines, you might pay more for fertilizing services.
The bottom line? The best way to find out how much you’ll pay for lawn care services is to get a free estimate from a company offering fertilizing packages in your area.
Top Recommended National Provider: TruGreen
The company that you choose to provide your fertilization is just as important as the tools you use and your lawn care schedule. We recommend TruGreen to any homeowner who’s searching for a full-service lawn care company offering fertilization services.
TruGreen currently offers a few different lawn care plans that include fertilization services. Let’s take a look at each of them in detail.
|Plan name||Plan inclusions|
|TruComplete Lawn Care Plan||One aeration and overseed per year. Eight general service visits a year. Fertilization. Grub and pest control services. Pre-emergent and targeted weed control. An analysis of your current lawn condition. Satisfaction guarantee. Service by lawn care professionals.|
|TruHealth Lawn Care Plan||Eight general service visits a year. Fertilization. Grub and pest control services. Pre-emergent and targeted weed control. An analysis of your current lawn condition. Satisfaction guarantee. Service by lawn care professionals.|
|TruSignature Lawn Care Plan||One aeration and overseed per year. Eight general service visits a year. Seven tree service visits per year. Fertilization. Grub and pest control services. Pre-emergent and targeted weed control. An analysis of your current lawn condition. Tree and shrub services. Satisfaction guarantee. Service by lawn care professionals.|
|TruNatural Lawn Care Plan||Five visits per year. Natural fertilizer application. Weed control services. An analysis of your current lawn condition. Satisfaction guarantee. Service by lawn care professionals.|
|TruMaintenance Lawn Care Plan||Six visits per year. Fertilization. Pre-emergent and targeted weed control. An analysis of your current lawn condition. Satisfaction guarantee. Service by lawn care professionals.|
TruGreen also offers the following services a la carte:
- Mosquito control
- Soil amendment services
- Tree and shrub services
The Cost of TruGreen Fertilization
The specific amount you’ll pay for your TruGreen service depends on where you live, the size of your lawn, and the package you choose. Here’s what you might expect to pay for a few of their most popular packages in Pennsylvania.
|TruComplete Lawn Care Plan||$97.95 per standard visit, $559.00 per aeration and overseed visit|
|TruHealth Lawn Care Plan||$97.95 per visit|
|TruMaintenance Lawn Care Plan||$95.95 per visit|
|TruNatural Lawn Care Plan||$186.81 per visit|
Frequently Asked Questions
Is professional lawn fertilization worth it?
Professional lawn fertilization is worth it for most homeowners who take pride in their lawns. Professional lawn care companies know how to save you time and stress when fertilizing your lawn, and can also help you avoid over-fertilizing or burning your grass.
What are the benefits of getting your lawn fertilized?
Lawn fertilization helps keep your lawn looking fresh and green. It helps your grass seeds get the nutrients they need to grow during the spring, summer, and fall and stay alive during the winter.
Are there custom plans for lawn fertilization?
Yes! Companies like TruGreen and Lawn Doctor provide personalized lawn fertilization services and maintenance plans.