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Organic Lawn Fertilizer

 
                          
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I live in Minnesota where we are required to use phosphorus free lawn fertilizer on established lawns.  All the organic lawn fertilizers I have found contain some level of phosphorus.  Is there a difference between the phosphorus found in chemical fertilizers and organic fertilizers?  Is it acceptable to use an organic fertilizer with phosphorus in a state with a law prohibiting phosphorus use?
 
MJ Solaro
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Location: Bellevue, WA
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Yeah, from what I understand, organic fertilizer and phosphorus-free fertilizer are not the same thing, so you'll need to decouple that.

Fertilizer that is organic is subjected to certain production standards that ensure it is naturally derived, vs. synthetically generated. There are plenty of organic sources of phosphorus (including manure, etc.) so many organic fertilizers contain phosphorus. Phosphorus is a chemical element, so it doesn't matter whether you find it in organic or synthetic fertilizers - its composition, and it's effect on the environment is exactly the same.

Phosphorus was probably banned in your area due to algae blooms in your freshwater bodies. Phosphorus was banned from washing machine liquid long ago, and is being phased out of dishwashing liquid. There is some debate as to whether run off from P fertilization causes algae blooms.

To get phosphorus-free fertilizer, check the 2nd number on the package. It will look something like 15-0-10. If the second number is 0, you're good to go. There are several brands that advertise themselves as phosphorous-free online.

Good luck!
 
paul wheaton
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There are lots of organic fertilizers that have no phosphorus. 

I think feather meal is the best.  You can usually get this via a farm supply.

 
                            
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Hello,
I'm a newbee for certainn to lawn care.  Live in CT and want the best organic lawn care product out there.  I've been told about Ringer, Espoma, and Cockadoodle Doo.  Can anyone help me decide?  I'm understanding the ratios and I'm sure that's a big part of it, but is there one of these that is THE BEST?
 
paul wheaton
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I'm not familiar with the last two.  Can you tell me more about them?
 
                            
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Well both web sites say their product is great (of course..).  Espoma weed controol is a 9-0-0 ratio and "lawn food" is an 18-8-6.  CD-Doo is 4-2-3 seemingly for both the weed and non weed control varieties.  Espoma is at www.espoma.com, CD-Doo is at www.purebarnyard.com.  I think the price base on the ratios in the end works out to be about the same but I'm not 100% sure of that.  Probably have to put down more of the CD-Doo given the ratios.  Thank you for the response.  Any further assistance you could provide would be so much appreciated since I'm in the $400 range per application given my lawn size.
 
paul wheaton
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I generally skip anything that makes claims about weed control. 

The Espoma 7-2-2 product sounds like the one I would most likely try.

I glanced at the chicken site ....  I would rather use feathermeal (espoma) than chicken litter (CD-doo). 

Chicken poop is great stuff, but it can easily burn plants.  It's one of the hottest of common manures.  "Hottest" meaning most likely to burn plants.  You'll get the same amount of N from the feathermeal, but in a much slower release. 
 
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