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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Morning everybody,

Before I found this site, I was part of a forum who was firm believers on applying a 30+-0-0- monthly to your Bermuda grass during the growing season, regardless of what a soil test says. The story was that Bermuda is a nitrogen hog and sucks it up, so it's a wise idea to apply a starter fertilizer every 45 days or so. Some even said they throw Milo and Ringers down every 2-3 weeks, which we all know is a very slow release. Regardless of how many people agreed, I just couldn't do that to my lawn because of what I read on the bags of Milorganite and speaking with Jaime who is the horticulturist over there.

What are y'alls opinions on this? Milo says to throw it down 4 times a year, but is that the minimum? I'm trying to separate what is factual and what is not.

Thanks!
 

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I apply N at .6lb/1k monthly using Milorganite.

I feel that everything is situational based on soil type, Bermuda type, HOC and traffic.

There isn't a one size fits all fertilizer setting for any grass type, including Bermuda.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
J_nick said:
Most studies I've read say 1# of N per 1000 every 4-6 weeks. I think some of the guys on here are going leaner on their fert apps this year I would be interested to see what they have to say. For me I'm going heavy this year that is if my seed germinates... I'm just setting here doing this :fool: till then
Yeah, that's what I figured. I just can't imagine throwing a 39-0-0 in August and September in central Texas. But then again, I don't know much and I am still learning.
Redtenchu said:
I apply N at .6lb/1k monthly using Milorganite.

I feel that everything is situational based on soil type, Bermuda type, HOC and traffic.

There isn't a one size fits all fertilizer setting for any grass type, including Bermuda.
Exactly. If you don't mind me asking, how are you figuring your .6 out? I have 3,500 sq/ft. Going from your statement of everybody is different, how did you do the math?

My soil test I had gave me an Organic recommendation of a 5-5-5 12.75 lb/1000 sq/ft.

I did my test through soil savy (very easy to read for a new green thumb like me) on 5/11/2017. I attached it below, but it's impossible to see the values below the scale. My new work computer doesn't have Microsoft Office yet so I'm working with one drive. i'd be more than happy to send it to someone via email if they are interested.

 

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Bermudagrass, 3.75 acres, Arkansas
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Redtenchu said:
...I feel that everything is situational based on soil type, Bermuda type, HOC and traffic.

There isn't a one size fits all fertilizer setting for any grass type, including Bermuda.
Big +1 :thumbup:

I like to keep my N somewhere around 0.75lb per thousand every 4-6 weeks, but willing to adjust a little as needed - based on observed conditions.

I'm also not into dropping a partial bag, so I will typically just use whatever gets me closest to that mark.
 

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Tex86 said:
Exactly. If you don't mind me asking, how are you figuring your .6 out? I have 3,500 sq/ft. Going from your statement of everybody is different, how did you do the math?
Oooh oooh I know this one.

The numbers on the bag of fertilizer (let's say 39-0-0) represent the percentage of N-P-K (Nitrogen-Phosphorus-Kalium) in the fertilizer. So 39-0-0 is 39%N, 0%P, 0%K. If you want to find out how much product you need to apply to get a certain number of pounds of N, multiply the target pounds of N by 100 and divide by the percentage of N on the bag.

For example : you want to apply 1 lb N using 39-0-0 => (1 * 100)/39 = 2.56 lbs of product
Another example : you want to apply 0.6 lb N using 5-5-5 => (0.6*100)/5=12 lbs of product

So now, if you have 39-0-0 on hand, and you want to apply 1lb N per thousand sq ft over your 3,500 sq ft lawn, you would put 2.56 * 3.5 = 9 lbs of product(actually 8.96 but close enough) in your spreader and spread over the lawn.

I know 39-0-0 sounds scary, but I believe it's 100% slow release sulfur coated urea.
 

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j4c11 said:
Tex86 said:
Exactly. If you don't mind me asking, how are you figuring your .6 out? I have 3,500 sq/ft. Going from your statement of everybody is different, how did you do the math?
Oooh oooh I know this one.

The numbers on the bag of fertilizer (let's say 39-0-0) represent the percentage of N-P-K (Nitrogen-Phosphorus-Kalium) in the fertilizer. So 39-0-0 is 39%N, 0%P, 0%K. If you want to find out how much product you need to apply to get a certain number of pounds of N, multiply the target pounds of N by 100 and divide by the percentage of N on the bag.

For example : you want to apply 1 lb N using 39-0-0 => (1 * 100)/39 = 2.56 lbs of product
Another example : you want to apply 0.6 lb N using 5-5-5 => (0.6*100)/5=12 lbs of product

So now, if you have 39-0-0 on hand, and you want to apply 1lb N per thousand sq ft over your 3,500 sq ft lawn, you would put 2.56 * 3.5 = 9 lbs of product(actually 8.96 but close enough) in your spreader and spread over the lawn.

I know 39-0-0 sounds scary, but I believe it's 100% slow release sulfur coated urea.
While this is true and handy information to know I believe Red gets his .6# of N by simple applying 1 bag of Milo over his 3k lawn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
j4c11 said:
Tex86 said:
Exactly. If you don't mind me asking, how are you figuring your .6 out? I have 3,500 sq/ft. Going from your statement of everybody is different, how did you do the math?
Oooh oooh I know this one.

The numbers on the bag of fertilizer (let's say 39-0-0) represent the percentage of N-P-K (Nitrogen-Phosphorus-Kalium) in the fertilizer. So 39-0-0 is 39%N, 0%P, 0%K. If you want to find out how much product you need to apply to get a certain number of pounds of N, multiply the target pounds of N by 100 and divide by the percentage of N on the bag.

For example : you want to apply 1 lb N using 39-0-0 => (1 * 100)/39 = 2.56 lbs of product
Another example : you want to apply 0.6 lb N using 5-5-5 => (0.6*100)/5=12 lbs of product

So now, if you have 39-0-0 on hand, and you want to apply 1lb N per thousand sq ft over your 3,500 sq ft lawn, you would put 2.56 * 3.5 = 9 lbs of product(actually 8.96 but close enough) in your spreader and spread over the lawn.

I know 39-0-0 sounds scary, but I believe it's 100% slow release sulfur coated urea.
Lol, thanks for that.

Got mine plugged in and ready to go for next application.

Much appreciated!
 

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I've done as high as two pounds of N per month. The Bermuda will take it better than you can.

Even with a PGR, more than a pound gets really hard to keep up with. If there is some filling in you need to do, higher than one pound will work, just be ready to mow and verticut a lot. For regular maintenance, I'm happy with between 1/2 and 1 lb of N per month. Like the others have said, there's no right answer. Once you get a feel for your own grass and soil, you can see what works best.

39-0-0 isn't a problem in Texas in August - that's when the Bermuda is really looking great.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
dfw_pilot said:
I've done as high as two pounds of N per month. The Bermuda will take it better than you can.

Even with a PGR, more than a pound gets really hard to keep up with. If there is some filling in you need to do, higher than one pound will work, just be ready to mow and verticut a lot. For regular maintenance, I'm happy with between 1/2 and 1 lb of N per month. Like the others have said, there's no right answer. Once you get a feel for your own grass and soil, you can see what works best.

39-0-0 isn't a problem in Texas in August - that's when the Bermuda is really looking great.
Good to know dfw. Thank you for that. I guess the 4 times a year they put in the Milo bag is just a recommended starting point. Since the grass is only 16 months old, I still got a ways to go. However, I can see a massive improvement from last year to now and it's very exciting to see it develop.
 

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So why is slow release Nitrogen better?
If I am going to applying 1/2 pound fast release every 2 weeks why get slow release ?
I am just asking.
Fast release = $11 a bag
Slow release with higher nitrogen number than MIlorganite = $35-40 a bag
 

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start with 1pound/1ksqft and maybe back off from there, but feed your lawn what you only need. Starter fert typically has high phosphorus and nitrogen. Unless you're low in phosphorus, Why feed it phosphorus if you don't need it. Bermuda will always need nitrogen, typically 1pound /1ksqft. Now, can you get away with 1/2lbs, maybe. If your lawn is growing and maintaining good color at 1/2 lbs, then keep use 1/2 pound.
Starter fert is usually more expensive so I only use it if I'm deficient in phosphorus.
Does it hurt to apply phosphorus when you have plenty in your soil, we'll let the soil experts and environmentalists answer that lol.
People like to give the lawn a balanced fertilizer at the beginning of the season just to make sure they fed it everything that it needs.
 

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Tellycoleman said:
So why is slow release Nitrogen better?
If I am going to applying 1/2 pound fast release every 2 weeks why get slow release ?
I am just asking.
Fast release = $11 a bag
Slow release with higher nitrogen number than MIlorganite = $35-40 a bag
It's "better" because it feeds your lawn without leaching for 4-6 weeks allowing you to not have to worry about fertilizing every two weeks.
If fertilizing every 2 weeks with fast release works better for you because it is cheaper and you don't mind the extra work, then there's nothing wrong with that.
 

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Tellycoleman said:
So why is slow release Nitrogen better?
If I am going to applying 1/2 pound fast release every 2 weeks why get slow release ?
I am just asking.
Fast release = $11 a bag
Slow release with higher nitrogen number than MIlorganite = $35-40 a bag
My seed company also recommends fertilizing with 1/2# fast release every 2 weeks. The reason why slow release is preferred is it prevents "feast then famine". Say you drop fast release at 1# every month. The week or two after you put down the fert the grass gets fed most of that Nitrogen then for the next 2 weeks there isn't any left around either from the grass using it up, leaching or volatizing. While the slow release will slowly break down in the soil. It will be spoon feeding that Nitrogen slowly over a 4-6 week time.

If you're wanting to push growth, like we are after seeding, then smaller amounts of fast release more frequently would be better. For maintaining a lawn slow release would be better.

Most fertilizer you see at the box stores are fast release. It's for the average joe looking for quick results. Hey the bag says "greener grass in 3 days". There are some with a low percentage of slow realease mixed in which is better than nothing.

$35-40 a bag seems too high. I get 40# bags of 40-0-0 100% slow release for $22.50. Keep searching around it's out there. Look at co-ops and feed stores or you might have a Site One in your area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Iriasj2009 said:
start with 1pound/1ksqft and maybe back off from there, but feed your lawn what you only need. Starter fert typically has high phosphorus and nitrogen. Unless you're low in phosphorus, Why feed it phosphorus if you don't need it. Bermuda will always need nitrogen, typically 1pound /1ksqft. Now, can you get away with 1/2lbs, maybe. If your lawn is growing and maintaining good color at 1/2 lbs, then keep use 1/2 pound.
Starter fert is usually more expensive so I only use it if I'm deficient in phosphorus.
Does it hurt to apply phosphorus when you have plenty in your soil, we'll let the soil experts and environmentalists answer that lol.
People like to give the lawn a balanced fertilizer at the beginning of the season just to make sure they fed it everything that it needs.
Great Information. My lawn is actually deficient in potassium so I'll need to pick some up. I habe a bag of scotts lawn food 34-0-0 and 8 bags of Milo (got a good deal). But would the scotts starter with potassium be ideal? If so, should I feed it that every 4 weeks until my next spil test in the fall? Like you said, I don't want to feed it what it doesnt need, but I am unsure on how long I should feed it for.

Again, thanks for the help!
 

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+1 on what Jnick said. Also, he has a good point on what they sell at the big box stores. Those bags of Scott's might be labeled slow release but it probably has a higher percentage of fast release in it than slow, unless it states it on the bag otherwise. I would apply it every every 2weeks at half rate , but every 4 weeks should be fine.

My lawn is also deficient in potassium, Ive applied 0-0-50 sulfate of potash before. I get it off of Amazon. Starter fert with a high potassium number will work too, or look for something with a 1-0-1 ratio or 3-1-2 ratio.

I'm fertilizing my lawn with Nitro-phos 19-4-10 every 6 weeks with. ~$30 for 7,400 sqft. I also use 1/4lbs-1/2lbs of ammonium sulfate weekly and biweekly as I'm pushing my bermuda to fill in. I'll feed it phosphorus until my next soil test and adjust there. I hope this helps!!
 
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