Fertilizing your lawn doesn't sound like a complicated task, but for the average homeowner it can be. Like many tasks, knowledge and practice count for a lot and the same is true for fertilization. But if you are bound and determined to take on the task yourself, there are a few common mistakes that most do-it-yourselfers make. Equipment Settings: Fertilizer, like medicine, should be delivered at the recommended dosages. Too little is ineffective and too much can be harmful. Every fertilizer manufacturer includes setting recommendations for the most common fertilizer spreaders. Using these settings as specified will ensure you deliver the proper amount of fertilizer. Same Fertilizer: There are general fertilizers, but these aren't as effective as fertilizers that are designed for different parts of the growing season. Using the same fertilizer all year can provide lack-luster results. Find a fertilizer that offers seasonal products for early spring, summer, late summer, fall and early winter. These products deliver the correct nutrients and the correct time, helping your lawn grow and thrive with the changing conditions. [caption id="attachment_1316" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Stripes caused by fertilizer"][/caption] Striping: If you've ever used google maps and checked out the aerial photo feature, chances are you may have noticed yards with green stripes. These strips are caused by the misapplication of fertilizer. More specifically, the stripes are caused by not aligning the spreader as you make each pass. Most spreaders, either drop or broadcast, will have an "edge" where the fertilizer hits the lawn. These "edges" need to be aligned so that there is little overlap or gap between them. This creates a nice, even layer of fertilizer and no stripes. The stripes themselves are formed when the fertilizer is overlapped or gapped, thus creating light and dark stripes of green. So while, taking care of your lawn is a passion for some homeowners, it can be a challenge for most. Using a professional lawn service can remedy the mistakes mentioned above and ensure you have a nice, lush lawn all season long.