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Fertilizing

Fertilizing

Fertilizing

Why Fertilize?

Choosing the right fertilizer for various landscape plants can be sometimes confusing with so many selections and formulas to choose from. We’ll attempt to make some recommendations to make your selections a little easier Also, we’ll discuss some applications times and intervals throughout the year for various landscape plant categories listed below.

One general category that we’ll briefly discuss when and where to utilize both granular and liquid fertilizer formulations.

Liquid fertilizers are usually granular or liquid concentrates that are added to water to create a liquid fertilizer solution. These are used for quick fast delivery to root systems and usually provide a quicker release and utilization of nutrients and minerals to the root systems of landscape plants applied to. Most liquid fertilizer applications are usually quick release and provide fertilizer benefits from 2-4 weeks.

Granular fertilizers are granular formulations that are applied either to the soil surface over top the root system area or sometimes mixed into the backfill media around the root ball during planting and are gradually dissolved by watering procedures and rainfall. These are usually targeted for slow release and long acting fertilizer applications. Granular fertilizer applications are usually slower release and provide fertilizer benefits from 1-3 months depending on the rate of application and type of granular formula applied.

Though liquid suspension fertilizers are popular and great for a 1-2 punch, we commonly recommend granular fertilizer formulations as the basis for a fertilizer program. Other than a few exceptions such as container gardening and houseplants, we normally recommend liquid fertilizers for supplement fertilizing in addition to a granular fertilizer program.

Another general recommendation that Evergreen of JC strongly encourages during the initial planting and early development of your landscape plants is the application of Fertilome Root Stimulator, a liquid suspension fertilizer that is high in phosphorous and potassium as well as Vitamin B1 and a rooting hormone IBA. The combination of these nutrients, vitamin B1 and IBA rooting hormone promotes quick root development needed to stabilize the necessary growth & healthy of landscape plants.

We promise that you’ll be guaranteed success with the addition of this product to your planting and early development procedures. It’s recommended to apply this product once within 1-2 days after initial planting and repeat 2 further applications approximately 1-2 weeks apart after initial planting.

This great root building solution is also great to use when a  particular landscape plant is going thru stress or showing signs of weakness that may be related to poorly developed roots or from root damage caused by construction or by moisture damage causing root rot damage.

One of the largest categories of landscape plant material to includes examples such as Boxwood, Holly, Juniper, Yews, Arborvitae, Nandina, Cypress, Euonymus, etc., we highly recommend granular fertilizer formulas. Evergreen of JC recommends using one of two selections being Fertilome Tree & Shrub Food or Evergreen’s private labeled formula Professional Nursery Formula 12-6-6. Both are available in various package sizes for small and large applications.

During early landscape plant development, we recommend 3 fertilizer applications

  • 1st application in early spring – March
  • 2nd appilcation in mid to late spring – May
  • 3rd application in early fall – September

With well established landscape plants, we recommend 2 fertilizer applications

  • 1st application in early to mid spring -March – April
  • 2nd application in early fall – September

The category of shrub is very similar to that of the above landscape plant category with the exception that fertilizer with a higher phosphorous nutrient level is selected. These shrubs can be those such as Crape Myrtles, Hydranges, Forsythia, Viburnum, Spirea, Butterfly Bush, Abelia, and more. Evergreen of Johnson City recommends using either Fertilome Gardener’s Special Fertilizer or Evergreen’s private labeled formula Bloomkote.

During early landscape plant development, we recommend 3 fertilizer applications

  • 1st application in early spring – March
  • 2nd appilcation in mid to late spring – May
  • 3rd application in early fall – September

With well established landscape plants, we recommend 2 fertilizer applications

  • 1st application in early to mid spring -March – April
  • 2nd application in early fall – September

Azaleas & Rhododendron are treated very similar to that of other flowering shrubs other than they prefer acid soil conditions for favorable growing conditions. We recommend Fertilome’s Azalea, Camelia, Rhododendron Food which contains a high phosphorous nutrient combination with the addition of acidifying sulphate to lower pH levels in the soil. Below is a fertilizing schedule that Evergreen of JC recommends for Azaleas, & Rhododendron.

Azaleas having shallow root systems prefer to be fed monthly from May thru September, or commonly referenced as from  Bloom to Bud. Start first fertilizer application directly after flowering period and repeat monthly to early fall when bud set has began. Lighter and more frequent fertilizer applications is recommended due to the shallower root systems and due to also being heavy feeders.

Rhododendron are very similar to that of Azaleas being fed from the period immediate following their flowering period and down to bud set in September. Rhododendron are to be fed 2-3 times durign this period or every other month for lush foliage and great fall bud set and successful spring flowering.

Another great bonus recommendation that you should apply to your Rhododendron and Azaleas is Fertilome Liquid Iron. This product when applied 1-2 times during the spring growing season produces awesome large dark green glossy foliage providing you not only a shrub that produces spring flowers for 4-6 weeks, but also lustrous attractive foliage for the remaining period throughout the year.

Deciduous & Evergreen trees are more dependent on regular fertilizer applications during their early development during the first 5 – 7 year of development within your landscape. Fertilizer applications beyond this period can be used to produce faster growth and to enhance coloring of foliage with emphasis of evergreen.

Evergreen of JC recommends Fertilome Tree & Shrub Food when fertilizing deciduous & evergreen trees and suggest the following schedule. See references made in the lower area of these recommendations about the supplemental use of Fertilome Winterizer Fertilizer.

During early tree development, we recommend 3 fertilizer applications

  • 1st application in early spring – March
  • 2nd application in mid to late spring – May
  • 3rd application in early fall – September

With well established landscape trees, we recommend 1 fertilizer application

  • 1st application in early to mid spring -March – April
  • Consider a second application in late fall using Fertilome Winterizer fertilizer

Ground covers can be both perennial, deciduous, or evergreen, but the parameters for the fertilization for all categories can be similar. In most cases, fertilizing ground cover crops is focused more during the initial development to encourage fast growth and covering in the target area where they are planted within the landscape. This early development period is usually during the first 1-3 years after planting. Fertilizing beyond this development period can vary due to preferences of growth and various feature enhancement such as flowering on certain types of ground covers.

We usually recommend using Fertilome Root Stimulator during the initial planting of ground covers as well as immediate incorporation or top dressing of a granular fertilizer application utilizing Fertilome Gardener’s Special or Evergreen’s private labeled fertilizer Bloomkote. Both are great selections with the “Bloomkote” having more of a granulated texture making it a little easier to apply.

Repeat applications during the development of ground covers is usually easier utilizing a heavy granulated textured fertilizer that makes broadcasting over the mass easier and less threatening due to potential fertilizer burning. When available, Evergreen usually recommends washing off of ground cover foliage after the application of fertilizer using a broadcasting application over the ground cover. This can be done utilizing either Professional Nursery Formula or Bloomkote, both being selections from Evergreen’s private labeled fertilizers. Bloomkote would be selected for flowering ground cover varieties due to it’s heavier higher levels of Phosphorous promoting heavier flowering. Below is a suggested fertilizing schedule recommended by Evergreen and it’s professionals.

During early ground cover development, we recommend 3 fertilizer applications

  • 1st application in early spring – March
  • 2nd application in mid to late spring – May
  • 3rd application in early fall – September

With well established ground covers, we recommend 1 fertilizer applications

  • 1st application in early to mid spring -March – April
  • Consider a 2nd application in early fall “September” or an application of Fertilome Winterizer in late fall “November”.

Fertilizing procedures for cool season grasses can be somewhat general, but also can vary quite a bit from various opinions from various lawn care providers. Evergreen of Johnson City offers a wide range of lawn fertilizers designed to promote consistent and healthy growth patterns as well as lustrous green color. Usually various weed control products are incorporated into many forms of lawn fertilizers for convenience of application.

Most professional lawn care fertilization programs utilize an annual rate of 4-5 lbs. of nitrogen per 1,000 sq.ft. of lawn area with the majority of this being applied during the heavier spring growing seasons from February – June.

Lawn owners can customize the fertilizing schedule for their lawn, but we advise a minimum of three lawn fertilizer applications. Evergreen’s recommended 4 step lawn fertilizer Do It Yourself program recommends the following:

  • Step #1 in February to Mid March using Fertilome Crabgrass Preventer Plus Lawn Food.
  • Step #2 in April or May using Fertilome Weed Out or Fertilome Lawn Food plus Iron.
  • Step #3 in September using Fertilome All Season Fertilizer wt. Pre-Emergent or Fertilome Lawn Food plus Iron.
  • Step #4 in November using Fertilome Winterizer Fertilizer.

Annual flower and perennial crops are usually heavy feeders due to many being flowering crops preferring fertilizers with higher phosphorous levels for enhanced flowering. During the initial planting, we recommend incorporating either Fertilome Gardener’s Special fertilizer or Evergreen’s private labeled Bloomkote fertilizer into the soil. This can be done by individually mixing a recommended amount of either fertilizer into the backfill soil during planting or can be applied as a broadcast application into the entire flower or perennial bed and cultivated into the top 4-6″ of the soil.

Though we have had great success with our use of Fertilome Gardener’s Specialfertilizer, Evergreen’s private labeled Bloomkote is another high quality fertilizer containing a slow release formula providing up to 6 months of fertilizer. This fertilizer would compare to the popular fertilizer selections known as Osmocote but has a longer lasting and slower releasing formula.

Liquid or water soluble fertilizers can also be used as supplement applications to annual and perennials that are planted either in a ground level planting or in raised or hanging containers. Evergreen recommends Fertilome’s water soluble Gardener’s Special fertilizer. Liquid applications of this water soluble fertilizer can be applied as supplement fertilizing, but we highly encourage the use of a granular fertilizer selections as your base fertilizer program for annual and perennial flower crops.

Another great water soluble fertilizer that can be used for a high impact affect on increased flowering and root development on annuals and perennials is Fertilome Root & Bloom Fertilizer. This fertilizer’s extremely high level of phosphorous produces increased amounts of bud and flower development as well as root growth.

Below is a fertilizer program suggested by Evergreen of Johnson City.

Annual Flower Crops:

  • Initially incorporate Fertilome Gardener’s Special or Bloomkote granular fertilizers into the planting or backfill soil during planting.
  • Follow up monthly applications of Fertilome’s water soluble Gardener’s Special fertilizer.
  • A single repeat application of Bloomkote slow release fertilizer in late spring to early early summer can be applied to fulfill the nutrient needs throughout the remaining growing season down to the killing frost date. Bloomkote’s slow release formula also allows it to be directly applied as a top dress application in flower pots or raised planting containers.

Perennial Flower Crops:

  • Initially incorporate Fertilome Gardener’s Special or Bloomkote granular fertilizers into the planting or backfill soil during planting.
  • For newly planted perennials follow up the initial fertilizer applied at time of planting  with an application of Evergreen’s private labeled Bloomkote fertilizer providing 6 months of slow release fertilizer for the remaining months of the growing season.
  • Supplemental applications of Fertilome’s water soluble Gardner’s Special can be applied during the growing season.

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