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Maintaining Successful Lawns in Montana


Lawns tie most home landscapes together, control soil erosion, dampen traffic noise and cool the air. But these things only happen if the lawn has been installed and maintained correctly.


For most Montana conditions, apply 2 to 4 pounds of actual nitrogen per 1000 square feet of lawn per year. Make two to three applications so that no more than 1½ pounds of available nitrogen per 1000 square feet are applied at one time.

The precise times for fertilizing lawns vary across the state, but fertilizing around Memorial Day, Labor Day and Columbus Day (after the last mowing but about four weeks before the soil freezes) are good rules of thumb. If you only apply fertilizer once or twice a season, the two fall applications are the key fertilizing times. Your lawn will green faster in spring if you remember the Columbus Day application.

Rates of application are given in pounds of actual nitrogen and the oxides of phosphorus and potassium. A 30-10-10 fertilizer contains 30 percent nitrogen, 10 percent phosphorus pentoxide, and 10 percent potassium oxide. A 100-pound bag will contain 30 pounds ...