Lawn "tonic"?

Asked April 12, 2013, 3:28 PM EDT

This was posted on as well as being on several other sites. Is there any truth to it?
KUSA - 9NEWS Consumer Reporter Mark Koebrich looks at a simple formula that many call a "tonic" for a drought stressed lawn. A former Golf Course Groundskeeper who lives in Parker, Tim Heffron, found it while watching television years ago in Oklahoma. "I started using it about five years ago back in Oklahoma where it's 100 degrees every day, day in and day out," says Heffron.Heffron clearly has the best looking lawn in his neighborhood. He has no sprinkler system and only hand-waters his lawn sparingly. He does use small amounts of dry fertilizer as well.The tonic is best applied in the evening after you mow. You do not need to water it in as you're applying it with water and it's already going to the roots of your lawn.
We have no had no reports of the tonic being hazardous to your pet.
The "Lawn Tonic"

-One full can of regular pop (any kind-no diet soda)
-One full can of beer (no light beer)-1/2 Cup of Liquid dishwashing soap (do NOT use anti-bacterial dishwashing liquid)-1/2 cup of household ammonia-1/2 cup of mouthwash (any brand)-Pour into 10-gallon hose-end sprayer (other sizes will work too)-In high heat, apply every three weeksThe liquid soap is a wetting agent, helping the formula penetrate to the roots. The ammonia promotes growth and turns your lawn green, and the mouthwash does something you would never suspect mouthwash would do. It kills the bugs and grubs. NOTE: Do NOT use anti-bacterial dishwashing liquid in the mixture as it will kill off important microbes in the lawn and soil that help "digest" thatch."It essentially messes-up their re-productive cycles and keeps them out of your lawn and makes it look a lot better and leaves it minty fresh," laughs Heffron. And because it's applied with the hose sprayer, it's a direct shot to your sod. "When you don't have a lot of water and we're on watering restrictions, this is another way to get the nutrients to your lawn and keep it growing."(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

Archuleta County Colorado lawns and turf

1 Response

CSU Extension advice is based on research. I cannot find any reference to the tonic you describe in CSU Extension's research-based information. For the best available information for Colorado turf, I recommend you read and follow the recommendations in these fact sheets and Planttalk article:

Drought considerations: