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Thread: First Time Homeowner Lawn Help

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    First Time Homeowner Lawn Help

    I dont know much about taking care of my lawn and after just purchasing a house i would like to try to get my lawn as healthy as possible and keep it that way.

    there are several bald spots and alot of clover and crab grass and i remember last fall there were some prickly types of weeds as well.

    Looking for tips on lawn maintenance and how to get my lawn as healthy as possible. Trying to stay organic as i do have pets that get into the grass and other flowers and trees on the property as well.

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    "SCOTTS" has always been the choice of a number of golf courses. High nitrogen is good without burning out a lawn. Fesque is the grass of choice.

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    Is Scotts products safe for plants and animals? Also, is there any recommendation on what type of products i should be putting on my lawn? I'll do a little more in depth googling and see what kind of information i can come up with

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    If im not mistaken, which i very easily may be...

    I think i have a mixture of creeping bentgrass and kentucky blue grass with some areas with rough bluegrass.

    Also, i live in central Illinois

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    You could ask 100 ppl what you need and no doubt you will get 100+ answers and in the end you will be more confused than you are now, but there is an easy solution to get the exact answers you need.

    In every state the state university operates what is known as an Agricultural Extension Service. The primary purpose of the ag extension service is to study the ecoligical and agricultural conditions within their respective region and supply information to anyone involved in agribusiness whether you operate a mega farm, a home garden or just looking to improve your lawn.

    Here is a link to help you find a local office for your Illinois Agricultural Extension Service.

    University of Illinois Extension

    Locate a local office and contact them, in fact, from my personal experience I would strongly suggest you actually go to their office and talk to them.

    The first thing they will recommend is to have a complete soil test done. Don't let that scare you, its quick, easy and suprisingly cheap. They will give you a little box with a plastic bag inside and complete instructions on how to prepare your test sample.

    To prepare the test sample you take a common hand garden trowel and dig a small scoop of soil from 5 or 6 random sites around your property. You then mix the samples thoroughly and spread that soil out to dry for a few days, then you fill the little bag with about 1lb of the soil and return it to the Ag Extension Office. From my experience it generally takes about 7 to 10 days and you will receive a complete written report stating what the current condition of the chemicals & nutrients in your soil by comparison to what you actually need. The soil test is really cheap, the last time I had one it was about $20, which is probably cheaper than a bag of fertilizer at the hardware store, and you don't even know for sure that you need whats in the fertilizer.

    When you get the soil test results they will tell you specifacally what fertilizers or chemicals you need to apply and the actual rate of application to build your soil up, and they may also suggest what type of seed you should use to get the lawn started immediately.

    In addition to the soil testing, they have Botanists, Entomologists and a number of other experts that will help you identify the different weeds, plants and insects on your property and how to control them as well as long lists of bulletins on a variety of home topics all of which are free.

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    I greatly appreciate the information. It looks like the local office isn't too far off from my workplace so ill just swing in there with a sample and see what I can find out. The local testing location does cost $20 so hopefully they can shed some light on my lawn and maybe i can get started on the path to a healthy lawn.

    Thanks for the great info and we'll see what i come up with!
    Last edited by Tcanuth; 03-22-2012 at 05:36 PM.

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    You just need a good sprinkler system and install new sod. Then just keep it watered properly.

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