Nitorgen analysis

Asked October 2, 2014, 11:25 AM EDT

There was no nitrogen analysis performed on my soil sample, yet nitrogen was recommended in 2 of the 3 fertilizer recommendations. The lawn is less than 10 feet from the shoreline and do not want to add any additional nutrients to the lake. Nitrogen is a nutrient. Why is it not assessed and why is it recommended when it has not been determined the current level in my soil?

Antrim County Michigan

1 Response

Nitrogen is water soluble. The amount in the soil changes with every rainfall or watering so a standard amount is set for various crops and soil types. Phosphorus and potassium are not water soluble and move very slowly through the soil... about one or two inches a year. Because of this, they are measured differently. The biggest problem for water sources is phosphorus and usually none is recommended for a lawn.

It is recommended that you keep all fertilizers 20 ft. away for a water source. Also consider putting in a buffer zone of native plants that naturally grow on the water's edge. Then they can act as a filter for anything that makes it too close to the lake.