Sunday, September 27, 2009

The First of the Fall Milorganite

I've fed with 108 pounds of Milorganite (15.6 pounds per thousand square feet) to start the fall feeding on the lawn. I can certainly use the iron, as well.

This year, Milorganite continues to be added every two weeks either through the end of October or beginning of November, depending on how the weather plays out.

I've passed well over 5,000 pounds of material for the year so far, and I'm approaching 800 pounds per thousand square feet.

Friday, September 25, 2009

The Last of the Boron

I sprayed the lawn with the last of the boron for the year, one teaspoon per thousand square feet. That should be enough to raise my boron levels from 0.4 PPM to around 0.8 PPM.

Boron's role in plants isn't clearly understood. It does help meristem cells differentiate into blade and root cells. Lacking it, the cells elongate but don't differentiate. Grasses aren't particularly sensitive to boron deficiency, but it's always best to adjust micronutrients into the optimal range if you're comfortable doing so.

Boron is also the touchiest of the micronutrients. 0.4 PPM is slightly deficient, 0.8 PPM is optimal, and sensitive plants will begin showing toxicity symptoms around 1.0 PPM. Only add boron after a soil test shows that your soil is deficient.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Starter Fertilizer

It looks like rain out there, so I put down 21 pounds of starter across the lawn (about 3.5 pounds per thousand). My soil test last spring came back at 9 ppm phosphorus, which is a touch low. I'm hoping to increase that into the 12 to 15 range by next year, which will be sufficient for good growth.

I'd use bone meal, but I have trouble getting enough and the starter fertilizer is a much more rapid source.

Phosphorus is used for energy transport and storage within the plant cell, as well as being an integral part of the RNA and DNA molecules. In flowering plants, it assists with flower production, although that isn't an issue on the grass. I did, however, add some to the gardens as well to work in by next spring.

Friday, September 18, 2009

It's Been A While

Sorry for the delay folks.

Here's a recent image of the lawn. I think the iron levels are finally starting to come up! This is post adding 4 pounds of sprayed iron sulfate from Bonide (the bagged, powdered stuff you can get in most stores). A week later, the color still hasn't faded.

The last 350 pounds of corn went down August 25th with a bit of Milorganite. So far in September I've fed twice with 150 pounds of soybean meal. I've moved 5,022 pounds of organic material this year, or about 775 pounds per thousand.

For the remainder of the year, Milorganite is the heavy-hitter. It works better as soil temperatures cool a bit.