When to Fertilize Your Michigan Lawn

By March 25, 2022No Comments

Deciding on when to fertilize your lawn in Michigan is an important decision that can make the difference between a lush, green lawn, and a yard that is an eyesore in your neighborhood. Fortunately, our temperate climate in Metro Detroit is ideal for healthy lawns if you follow the proper steps.

Our team is frequently asked when you should fertilize your lawn in Michigan. Since the Midwestern region has cool-season grasses like Kentucky Bluegrass, fescue and perennial rye, our team recommends that the first step is knowing when to apply fertilizer. When done correctly, fertilizing will offer the right balance of nutrients and nitrogen to keep your lawn actively growing six months out of the year.

Rabbit on the Lawn

Spring is the first season to fertilize your lawn in Michigan

Think of your lawn as a sleeping animal that has hibernated over the winter. When the temperatures rise and the days get longer, your grass will start waking up from its “hibernation” and will be hungry. That is when you know it is time to fertilize your lawn in Michigan.


A spring fertilizer application in March or April offers crabgrass control while promoting a healthy, spring “greening.”

As your lawn recovers from the stressful winter, it is gathering nutrients to help strengthen its roots. This is the first time you should be applying your fertilizer to your lawn in Michigan because these nutrients will support its overall health.

A second fertilizer application may be needed in the spring.

This is because some lawns require extra nutrients to support a brighter color and more density to help naturally fill in as many patches as possible.

A second spring fertilizing can also help with broadleaf weed control or to eliminate other weeds that are fighting your lawn for space. While every application is important, springtime in Michigan is the first time when you should be fertilizing your lawn. If spring fertilizing goes well, it will help create a superior-looking lawn for the entire season.

Broadleaf Weeds

Summer fertilizing keeps the momentum going

A summer fertilizer application promotes color and total health even though growth is less important after the spring season. Grassy weeds can pop up during this time of year which may require a professional to spot-treat areas of concern or identify harmful insects.

Summer can be harsh on your lawn, so this season is a great time to fertilize your lawn in Michigan. Do not let the hot days and warm nights prevent you from giving your lawn the TLC it needs. Most laws can receive this application in June. That timing is critical because your lawn might be soon dealing with extreme heat and a lack of rainfall. Insects can also be an issue adding stress to your lawn.

Summer Lawn

Homeowners that have a sprinkler system should ensure that it is working properly and regularly. Those without a sprinkler system should plan to water their lawn early in the morning or later in the evening when the sun is near the horizon and the temperatures have fallen. Watering the lawn is especially important following a fertilizer application. Limiting the amount of foot traffic can also help your lawn to get even greener during these warm summer months.

Some lawns may also require a second broadleaf weed application in the summer. Be sure to educate yourself about the weeds that may be growing on your lawn to help you better understand when to apply fertilizer in Michigan.

Fall is another important season to apply fertilizer to your lawn in preparation for winter

Supporting root growth with a fall fertilizing application helps to prepare it for the harsh realities of winter. At least one fall application should occur in September and October.

The good news is that autumn is similar to spring in that it offers ideally growing conditions to help prepare for a dormant winter. It offers warm nights and cool days, with enough natural rainfall to feed it properly. This makes it one of the most important periods for your lawn care program. By feeding an aggressively growing lawn, its roots are strengthened and nutrients are being stockpiled for the winter. This strategy will support a fast, green start in the following spring.

Fall Lawn

If you need help understanding when to fertilize your lawn in Michigan and want to make sure it is managed correctly, rely on the experts at Contender’s to provide a free estimate. One of our experienced professionals will be in touch. Contact Contender’s to learn more.

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