What is Lawn Spraying and How Does it Work

PINELLAS COUNTY, FLORIDA

By Rick Orr 04/18/2020
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Lawn tech spraying a St Augustine lawn
Lawn spraying is a delivery service - a delivery service where a mixture of fertilizers, insecticides and herbicides are delivered to your home and spread evenly over the lawn

Lawn Spraying as a Service

Lawn spraying is a delivery service – where a mixture of fertilizers, insecticides, and herbicides are delivered to your home and spread evenly over the lawn. What goes in the mix is regulated by law and supervised by a certified pest control operator. Each company has their own mix design. 

Mostly Water, Not a Bunch of Chemicals

The lawn spray liquid is a mixture of mostly water (95%), a small amount of fertilizer (4.5%) and an even a smaller amount of pesticides and additives (0.5%). The liquid is NOT a bunch of chemicals – your lawn doesn’t need a lot of fertilizer or insecticides, but you do need a lot of water to spread it evenly over your lawn.

Using the Leaf as the Fertilizer Carrier

The liquid works by coating and bonding to the leaves of grass in your lawn - effectively turning the leaf into “slow release organic plant food”. Like vitamin supplements added to food, the coated leaf blade becomes nutrient rich plant food. When cut, the coated leaf falls into the lawn to be composted into plant food. The lawn is fed according to demand – faster-growing lawns yield more fertilizer coated clippings to feed the lawn and vice versa.

How it Works: Your lawn is actively composting 24/7. Organic and inorganic matter that falls into the canopy of the lawn is enzymatically digested by soil microbes and recycled into plant food – commonly referred to as composting. This near sustainable eco-system requires only water and a small amount of nutrients to keep functioning.

Liquid Fertilizer Do Not Wash Away

No, rains do not wash away liquid fertilizers! The best analogy is iron filings clinging to a magnet. The fertilizer is like the iron filings and the leaf and other organic matter is like the magnet. Once the liquid containing fertilizer encounters the leaf, the fertilizer “clings” to the leaf using magnetic charges. These magnetic bonds strong enough to withstand even torrential rain.

Why Liquid is Superior to Granular Formulations

Liquid fertilizers can be custom blended every day whereas granular fertilizers are fixed formulation. Custom blending allows for the lawn spray company to be nimble and adjust for prevailing conditions. This is not possible with fixed granular formulations where the only adjustment is to vary the amount applied. But liquid applications, every ingredient can be finely tuned every day for maximum results.

How Lawn Spraying Protects Your Lawn

The insecticides also coat and bond to the leaf blades. But unlike the fertilizer, the insecticides are most effective before composting. The insecticides used in the spray have an immediate impact on the insect population – knocking down insect populations to near zero. With each mowing, the same nutrient-rich leaf carries a small amount of insecticide into the lawn to further reduce insect populations. Then as the leaf is composted, the insecticides are broken down into plant nutrients too!

 

Rick Orr Owner-Operator APL Pest Control/Creator of ILOVETURF.COM
Rick
Orr
APL Pest Control

Rick Orr is the creator of Iloveturf.com, Owner/Operator of APL Pest Control, and a graduate of VA Tech in Agronomy (Turf Ecology).  

Since 1980, Rick worked in the green industry, mostly with golf courses, resorts, and large communities. Rick has obtained certifications for arboriculture, landscape contractor, irrigation contractor, and taught Environmental Horticulture at St Petersburg College.  

Rick lives and works in Pinellas County.

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Speaking Engagements - Does it seem like you are only hearing one side of water restrictions, fertilizer bans, plant restrictions, and many other urban landscape hot topics? Rick Orr is available for speaking engagements for your HOA, Community or Professional Association, or Garden Club about a variety of subjects. Feel free to contact Rick Orr at [email protected] for more information.