Professional Lawn Care vs. Do-It-Yourself: Which Is Better for Fertilization?

By TruGreen November 10, 2016
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Debating DIY vs. hiring a professional lawn care service? We discuss the benefits of hiring a professional.

<p>Professional Lawn Care Vs. Do-It-Yourself</p>

As a homeowner who loves their lawn, you know that fertilizer plays an important role in helping achieve a lawn that is healthy, green, and lush. And as you make your weekend trip to the local home and garden store, you might be tempted to go the DIY route. How hard could it be, right? 

Well, there’s a little more to proper lawn fertilizing than simply tearing open a bag of fertilizer and spreading it around your yard. In fact, there’s a great deal of science behind this type of lawn service.

But we’ll save the science for a little later on in this article. First, let’s discuss the time, effort, and even cost you can save by hiring a professional lawn service

For time, the average American homeowner spends 150 hours per year maintaining their yard. That’s 150 hours that could be spent playing with the kids outside, going on a bike ride, catching a local game or really, just about anything else that’s more fun than lawn work.

For effort, while it’s easy to learn how to mow and water your lawn, it’s not as easy to learn the exact needs of your grass. This is where the science comes back into play. A company that is well-versed in providing lawn fertilizer services will know what kind of fertilizer your lawn needs, how to apply it properly, and when to apply it, based on your soil, climate, and region. Lawn care isn’t one size fits all, and your local TruGreen agronomist knows that.

3 components for successful fertilizing

A lawn fertilizer service understands that this process involves three primary considerations: proper ingredients, proper amounts, and proper timing. Getting these three areas correct can help your lawn reach its fullest potential.

  • Proper ingredients. Lawn fertilizing services understand that fertilizer comes in a variety of mixtures and that it’s important to determine which mix is best for your lawn’s individual needs. Fertilizer is comprised of three major nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. Nitrogen makes grass plants grow and become greener; phosphorus stimulates root growth and seedling development, and potassium promotes disease and drought tolerance.
  • Proper amounts. Fertilizing on the right schedule with the right ingredients works best when the proper amount is applied to your lawn. If you were going the DIY route, you would need to determine the square footage of your lawn and then do some math to figure out how many bags of lawn fertilizer you would need.
  • Proper scheduling. The timing of fertilization treatments is equally important to achieve a healthy, green and thriving lawn. Proper lawn fertilizing service takes into account the "nitrogen release rate". How fast the nitrogen is released determines how fast the grass will "green up”, how much it will grow and how long the results will last. Lawn grasses require a steady, controlled feeding to produce a thick, green lawn. Controlled-release fertilizers deliver just enough quick-release nitrogen to produce a fast greening, while the balance is released gradually by microbial action in the soil over a period of approximately 8 weeks. As a result, there is a constant supply of nitrogen for the grass.

See? Effort and science. Now onto cost. At first, it may seem like the DIY option is the most cost-effective, but as one DIYer noted in the blog AkronOhioMoms, a professional service like TruGreen is comparable, without all the hassle. “Many DIYers do their own work to save money – we do this for many, many projects around the house. However, TruGreen lawn plans start at just $194.25 a year   – count it up, don’t you spend that much at your local garden store buying all the fertilizers with mediocre results – and your own labor?” 

And there’s a huge perk to getting a professional lawn service that you can’t get with DIY: 100% satisfaction guarantee. 

Writes the AkronOhioMoms blogger, “The thing about DIY lawn work is that we are not all trained to know our exact lawn care’s needs. If we get it wrong, there is no money back or satisfaction guarantee. With TruGreen, you’ll love your lawn with their 100% satisfaction guarantee.”

So, would you rather:

  1. Spend an afternoon fertilizing your grass every five weeks, spring through fall, and spending about $50 per bag of fertilizer or
  2. Hire a professional and spend your weekends with friends and family?

We know which option we’d pick. To get a customized lawn care plan or to learn more about our lawn fertilizer services, visit or call 866.688.6722 today.


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