Soil Amendments for Your Arizona Lawn

Struggling to keep your Arizona lawn looking healthy and green? You’re not alone. Desert soil can be tricky when it comes to maintaining a beautiful yard year-round. Learn when and why you should consider a fertilizer to promote healthy growth.

Struggling to keep your Arizona lawn looking healthy and green? Desert soil can be tricky when it comes to maintaining a beautiful yard. Learn when and why you should use fertilizer

Signs you should fertilize your lawn

  1. You live in Arizona! The truth is, certain regions in the southwest are problematic due to harsh weather and a lack of abundant nutrients in the soil.
  2. Your backyard contains high levels of clay. Clay soil can be rock hard to the touch as you might imagine, making it difficult for new vegetation to penetrate through caliche, its upper layer. When clay contracts and expands between extremely dry heat and moisture from monsoon rains, respectively, it can be difficult to maintain the kind of consistency needed for seasonal growth. Further, the alkaline in clay is largely responsible for iron deficiencies that lead to discolored lawns.
  3. The weather is colder or wetter than usual. Always follow the instructions for your specific fertilizer type, but know that certain factors such as heavy rainfall can affect the timing of your application. Save money by fertilizing just before a light rain (as it saves on your water bill) and not fertilizing before heavy rains as the fertilizer will just run off the yard.

Types of fertilizer

The three main types of fertilizer are:

  • Organic
  • Water-soluble
  • Synthetic

Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are the main nutrients found in fertilizers and marked by their percentage to the overall composition. Nitrogen is what gives the grass its vibrant green color while phosphorous and potassium are responsible for early establishment and growth and the ability to use nitrogen, respectively.

Check out our Nutrition page for more information on fertilization.

Alternative Soil Amendments

Consider organic fertilizer such as composted turkey litter, chicken litter, or steer manure as all provide a great source of organic nitrogen, phosphorus, and microbial stimulants. These can be found in most garden stores as well as local chicken and egg family farms that sell organic litter products.

When to fertilize

Generally, complete fertilizers are best any time of year; however, you should consult a professional landscaper for an analysis if there’s any doubt as to what materials are required for your lawn. You can also conduct a personal pH test of the soil to determine what nutrients are needed.

When transitioning your lawn from winter into a spring or summer yard, apply fertilizer at a half-rate around the first part of May. Less is often more so as not to burn your lawn. If you apply full-rate fertilizer, the rye grass will grow too much causing an unhealthy and unsightly yard. Use full-rate fertilizer in June when Bermuda grass is really growing strong.

For more information on how to properly care for your Arizona sod, contact Evergreen Turf today at 480.456.1199.

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Soil Amendments for Your Arizona Lawn
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Soil Amendments for Your Arizona Lawn
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Struggling to keep your Arizona lawn looking healthy and green? Desert soil can be tricky when it comes to maintaining a beautiful yard. Learn when and why you should use fertilizer.
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Evergreen Turf
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