"What is this 'Sweet Green' you speak of so highly?"
That's the gist of about 100 emails I've received in the past two weeks. "Tell me more," they say.
Well, since it's time to apply our first fertilization of the season, I'll give you the 411 on the first entry to the organic fertilizer market from Nitro-Phos.
Ladies and gentlemen, may I introduce Nitro-Phos Sweet Green 11-0-4.
I speak so highly of this product because I truly consider it a "game-changer" in the lawn fertilizer market. However, if you've been having success with Nitro Phos Imperial 15-5-10 — the regular early green-up fertilizer — I'm also going to suggest "if it ain't broke, don't fix it!" Go ahead and put down the Imperial 15-5-10 if you want to stay true to the schedule.
Now, let's look at Sweet Green 11-0-4 and see why I think it's a game-changer. In the 16 years that I've been doing GardenLine, there has never been an organic fertilizer that met all three important criteria that would garner my endorsement. I have endorsed many that meet two of the three, but I will never endorse one that fails in all three:
Also, because Sweet Green is produced in uniform fertilizer prills, it is one of the easiest organic fertilizers to spread. And it doesn't generate a putrid cloud, nor does it leave a sticky, dusty film in the broadcast spreader.
Okay, so now you're asking, "Do I use it instead of 15-5-10, or what?"
Yes! No! Maybe so!!! Does that clear it up for you?
Seriously, if you've been successfully using Nitro-Phos Imperial 15-5-10 for early green-up as recommended in my fertilization schedule, you can continue. But, if this is the year you've decided to go more organic, Sweet Green is the best first step. It's completely interchangeable in any of the fertilizations on my schedule ... even the winterizer. You can mix and match - it just doesn't matter! That's one of the beauties of this new product. But there's one big no-no! Don't mix the two during the same application time. Choose one or the other for each specific application period.
If there's one downside to the product, it's that it isn't available at every single garden center, feed store and hardware store in the region right now. The good news is, if you keep asking for it, eventually every retailer will have to carry it. But many, many places stock it already. In fact, you'll find it at almost any retailer that carries other Nitro-Phos products.
Finally, let me emphasize that Nitro-Phos Sweet Green 11-0-4 is for the lawn. While it can be used for trees and shrubs, it is not a fertilizer for vegetable gardens, fruit trees or flowering plants that need significantly more balance and, in some cases, far more phosphorous (the middle number in a fertilizer ratio).
Pretty much every Saturday, rain or shine, beginning this weekend and running through June, I will be broadcasting live somewhere and talking to you in person. This spring's GardenLine remotes, personal appearances and book-signings all start in earnest at a nursery I sort of grew up with - Cornelius Nursery on Dairy Ashford, just south of the Katy Freeway.
We'll be there to help celebrate their GardenFest, which is actually taking place at both Cornelius locations. Highlights will include classes on different gardening and landscaping themes like fruit, nut and berry gardening and using color correctly in landscaping. For the speaker schedules at each location, check out www.corneliusnurseries.com.
And guess what? The newest generation of the Lemmonhead shirt will be available for the first time at this appearance. Tune in GardenLine 6-10 a.m. Saturday before I head out to Dairy Ashford to hear about several ways you can earn one. Begging does work at appearances, but never on the air.
We thank our partners Soil Menders for sponsoring our Lemmonhead shirts this spring. Their team will be hanging out with us at Cornelius this Saturday, and you know they will have plenty of goodies to give away.
Randy Lemmon's GardenLine is heard 6-10 a.m. Saturdays and Sundays, exclusively on NewsRadio 740 KTRH.
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