Fertilizing your lawn and controlling weeds are both important parts of any lawn care and maintenance program so it is no wonder that many homeowners are tempted to apply a “weed & feed” product on their lawns. It certainly sounds great – a single product that takes care of both fertilization and weed control! Just think of the savings in both time and expense. However, weed & feed type products are probably not a good idea for most lawns. You can achieve much better results by applying fertilizers and weed control products separately.
Weed & feed products contain two different types of products. They contain fertilizers to help the lawn grow and also herbicides to prevent or kill weeds. The main problem with weed & feed products is that using them results in applying one of the products at the wrong time. Fertilizers and weed control herbicides need to be applied at the right time of the year to be effective. Pre emergent herbicides are designed to prevent weeds from germinating and are applied early in the year before the lawn starts growing.
Post emergent herbicides kill existing weeds and are applied when weeds are actively growing, but typically after the lawn growth has started slowing. Fertilizers should be applied as the lawn is actively growing in the spring. By the time weeds appear, the best time for applying fertilizer may have already passed.
In addition, different formulations of fertilizers are used depending on the type of grass and the makeup of the soil. You might also use a different fertilizer in the spring than in the fall. At the same time, the type of herbicide you need might vary depending on what type of weeds you are attempting to control. Finding a weed & feed product with the right combination of fertilizer and weed control product could be difficult.
For best results, select the appropriate fertilizers and weed control herbicides and apply them separately at the right time of year.