Fertilizing Blackout Is Good News For The Severn River

Published: January 9, 2020

You can scratch one “honey do” chore off the list this winter – lawn fertilizing. It is now illegal to fertilize your lawn until March 1, 2020.

fish fertilizingAnd even, your lawn doesn’t really need fertilize because most lawn-care pros say you don’t need to fertilize in the spring! It just washes away … into the Severn River.

This so-called “fertilizer blackout” prohibits residents and lawn-care services from fertilizing lawns in Maryland with any products containing phosphorus and nitrogen.  Under Maryland’s 2011 Law Fertilizer Law, applying fertilizer is prohibited between Nov. 16, 2019 and Feb. 29, 2020.

Reason: Nearly all of the nitrogen and phosphorous applied during this time ends up in local streams and waterways, like the Severn River and the Chesapeake Bay,  which are impaired due to excessive levels of nutrient overloading.

We’re currently experiencing a rare winter algae boom that is fed by these pollutants.

The best time to apply fertilizer is in the fall when grass concentrates on building up root systems. Many lawn-care experts point out that spring-time fertilizing is generally not helpful for creating healthy lawns.

Applications of potassium and lime are authorized because they are not considered a threat to water quality.

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