Grass & Grass Seed
How to Choose Lawn Products and Spreaders
Whether you're feeding, seeding, or battling weeds, Scotts has the right product for your lawn.
All yards are different. Whether it's the size or grass type, your yard is unique. Finding the right lawn fertilizer, seed, or weed-fighting product—not to mention the appropriate spreader—is an essential part of turning it into the yard of your dreams.
Choose the Right Lawn Fertilizer
Feeding regularly is one of the most important things you can do for your lawn. A lawn that is fertilized at least 4 times a year is greener and thicker, has a deeper, more extensive root system, allows fewer weeds, and is able to better withstand stresses like heat, drought, and foot traffic than it would otherwise. Speaking of weeds, there’s no need to treat them separately. Simply use a product that feeds and tackles weeds at the same time. Whatever product you use, be sure to follow all label directions.
Fertilizers for Spring
Your lawn wakes up and needs nutrients to help green up and develop new roots. In the North, fertilize with Scotts® Turf Builder® Halts Crabgrass Preventer with Lawn Food in early spring to green your lawn up fast. Follow up with Scotts® Turf Builder® Weed & Feed 6 to 8 weeks later to give grass continued nourishment while killing dandelion, clover, and other major weeds, or with Scotts® Turf Builder® Lawn Food if you’re not having trouble with weeds. In the South, use Scotts® Turf Builder® Bonus® S Southern Weed & Feed, which kills weeds like dollarweed and clover while helping grass grow thick to make it harder for future weeds to grow. If you also have problems with fire ants, though, use Scotts® Turf Builder® Southern Triple Action* for your early spring fertilization, as it prevents fire ants while feeding your lawn and killing existing weeds. Either way, follow up with an application of Scotts® Turf Builder® Southern Lawn Food 6 to 8 weeks later to keep the thick, lush growth coming. (Always check the product label for your particular grass type before applying.)
Fertilizers for Summer
Heat and drought are tough on lawns, and fertilizing helps strengthen and protect your grass. In the North, as long as your lawn is still green and hasn’t gone dormant from the heat, continue to feed it with a product like Scotts® Turf Builder® SummerGuard® Lawn Food with Insect Control. In the South, lawns will continue to grow through the heat of summer. When it’s time to fertilize, use Scotts® Turf Builder® Summer Lawn Food, a lawn food plus water maximizer that helps drive water into dry soils so you can keep your lawn green with less water.
Fertilizers for Fall
Your lawn needs nutrients to both help it recover from the stresses of summer and prepare for the upcoming winter so you have a greener, thicker lawn next spring. Scotts® Turf Builder® WinterGuard® Fall Lawn Food, which is formulated to provide the nutrients Northern lawns need in the fall to build deep, strong roots, does both. If perennial weeds like dandelion still plague your lawn, though, choose Scotts® Turf Builder® WinterGuard® Fall Weed & Feed3 instead so you can control them while fertilizing your grass. If you live in the South, apply another round of Scotts® Turf Builder® Bonus® S Southern Weed & Feed if you don’t have issues with fire ants, or Scotts® Turf Builder® Southern Triple Action* if you do.
To Control Lawn Weeds without Feeding
If you’re looking for granular weed control without the fertilizer, Scotts has several options available. Prevent crabgrass, Poa annua, and other listed weeds with Scotts® WeedEx™ Prevent with Halts®, kill broadleaf weeds with Scotts® Weed Control for Lawns, or use Scotts® MossEX™ to control actively growing moss. Remember to always read and follow the label directions before use.
Choose the Right Grass Seed
Scotts has the best grass seed solutions to help you tackle anything from new lawn installations to thickening up your existing lawn or patching bare spots.
Bare spots in your lawn are a common problem, but fortunately, they’re easy to fix. Repairing bare spots with Scotts® EZ Seed® Patch & Repair not only makes your lawn lush and more enjoyable, it also helps prevent bigger problems, like weed invasions, from happening later.
Over time, wear and tear on your lawn can cause it to become weak and thin, even with regular feedings. To thicken up your thin lawn, use Scotts® Turf Builder® Thick’R Lawn™, which combines Scotts® high performance grass seed with fertilizer and a soil improver into one easy-to-use product.
For larger seeding projects, select the right Scotts® Turf Builder® grass seed for your lawn type and growing conditions. (If you’re not sure what type of grass you have, read our Identify Your Grass article.) When seeding a new lawn, apply a fertilizer formulated for new lawns, like Scotts® Turf Builder® Starter® Food for New Grass, to help get young grass seedlings off to a fast start. If you live in the North, use Scotts® Turf Builder® Starter® Food for New Grass plus Weed Preventer. It will provide young seedling with needed nutrients and prevent listed weeds, like dandelion and crabgrass, for up to 6 weeks.
When to Plant Grass Seed
Plant cool-season grasses like Kentucky bluegrass, perennial ryegrass, and fescues in spring or early fall, when temperatures are between 60 to 80 degrees F. Warm-season grasses like zoysiagrass, bermudagrass, centipedegrass, and bahiagrass should be planted in late spring through early summer, when temperatures are between 75 to 90 degrees F.
Learn more about Scotts seeding solutions.
Choose the Right Spreader
Once you have the right product for your project, you’ll need the right tools. Whether your lawn is big or small, make sure you have the right spreader for fertilizer, seeds, and other granular products.
Spreaders for Small Lawns
If you have a very small lawn, use a handheld spreader, like the battery-operated Scotts® Wizz® Spreader or hand-cranked Scotts® Whirl™ Hand-Powered Spreader Either can be used with most lawn fertilizer, granular weed control, and seeding products.
Spreaders for Small to Medium Lawns
For a small to average sized lawn, use a broadcast spreader designed to hold 5,000 to 15,000 square feet of product, like the Scotts® Turf Builder® EdgeGuard® Mini Broadcast Spreader or the Scotts® Turf Builder® EdgeGuard® DLX Broadcast Spreader.
Spreader for Large Lawns
If you have a large lawn, use the Scotts® Elite Spreader. Designed for big jobs, it has a 6-foot spread pattern and can hold up to 20,000 square feet of product.
For more information, read Which Spreader Is Best for your Yard.
With the right products and spreader, maintaining a beautiful lawn can be simple, leaving you more time to get out and enjoy it!
*Only available in AL, AR, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, and TX