A good rule of thumb is to not fertilize until the new lawn grass has required being mowed twice. By then, there should be an adequate root system to take up the fertilizer.
Q. I’ve recently renovated, including planting new sod. How long and how often should I irrigate this new sod until it is rooted? Also, when should I fertilize it?
A. When watering to establish a lawn, we normally call for two to three “mists” throughout the day for the first seven to ten days until roots become established. These are just ten-minute bursts. Then back off to once a day for about ½ hour for seven to ten days. Then go to two to three times a week for about seven days. By then your lawn should be established. Of course, when we are getting adequate rainfall, the above is not necessary. Your goal during establishment is to keep the upper several inches of soil moist (not soggy wet and not allowed to dry out). Rain counts.
A good rule of thumb is to not fertilize until the new lawn grass has required being mowed twice. By then, there should be an adequate root system to take up the fertilizer. Applying fertilizer too soon can burn (injure) the new tender roots or can leach because of the lack of sufficient roots to take up the fertilizer.
Here is a UF/IFAS webpage with publications on establishing and renovating a Florida lawn. http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/TOPIC_Lawn_Establishment
The May plant clinic will be held Friday, May 10 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at the Okaloosa County Extension Annex located at 127 NW Hollywood Blvd. in Fort Walton Beach.
The plant clinic provides a place to bring samples of lawn, landscape and garden plants for diagnosis, including weeds and insects for identification.
To participate, bring a fresh sample of the weed, plant, insect, etc., to the clinic. This may include a plant stem with several leaves, a 4-inch square of grass with roots attached, etc.
You also may bring a sample of soil for pH testing. Use a clean shovel, trowel or soil probe to collect a representative sample by taking thin slices or cores of soil to a depth of six to eight inches from ten different spots throughout the plant bed, lawn or garden. Thoroughly mix all the small soil slices/cores together in a clean bucket. Place one to two cups of this mixture in a closable plastic bag or small throwaway plastic container and bring to the clinic for testing. Attach a slip of paper with your name, phone number and where the sample was taken (e.g. lawn, vegetable garden, flowerbed, etc.).