Keeping the right levels of nutrients and pH is one of the main aspects of lawn care.
Alongside nitrogen and phosphorous, potassium is one of the three key nutrients needed to keep a healthy garden and lawn.
Not only does it promote growth and strong roots by supporting protein synthesis and moving nutrient-rich water throughout the plant, but it helps plants fight off diseases and pests.
Luckily, if deficient, there are many ways to add potassium to the soil.
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Dry And Mulch Kelp From The Beach
Surprisingly enough, seaweed is an incredible resource for your lawn due and your body due to having over 70 vitamins and minerals.
We’ll focus here on how it can help your lawn.
Due to its quick growth rate in water, using kelp in any of its many forms is a sustainable and practical way to add potassium to your soil.
If you live near an ocean, source this ingredient for free by heading down to the beach and, using gloves, pick up a few strands.
Bring it home and set it out to dry.
Once dried, chop it up and add it to your compost or grind it up and sprinkle it directly onto your lawn.
It is also possible to buy kelp meal and liquid seaweed concentrate from your local gardening store.
Spread or spray this product on evenly. Kelp contains roughly 4-13%* potassium by weight.
Repurpose The Wood Ash From Your Fire Pit
Have you ever heard the fact about forests growing back stronger after forest fires?
This is because potassium and a few other key nutrients are byproducts of burning foliage.
Wood ash contains a large amount of potassium and low amounts of nitrogen.
Check out more details on how to naturally add nitrogen to your lawn.
If you have a fire pit at home, get this product for free by simply taking the ashes from your barbeque, as long as you only burned wood, and you didn’t add any chemicals to the fire.
Either mix some ashes into your compost or sprinkle a thin layer directly onto your soil.
Be careful not to use too much and do your best to spread it out as wood ash can easily burn your lawn.
Wood ash will also make your soil more alkaline, so test the pH first. If your soil’s pH is perfectly balanced or already very alkaline, avoid this ingredient.
But if your soil is too acidic and could use a product to raise it, wood ash is the perfect ingredient.
Wood ash has roughly 3-7% potassium by weight.
Slowly Release Potassium With Greensand
Greensand has been obtained from the depths of ancient oceans now sitting under our feet in many world areas.
Seabeds from millions of years ago are now dried up and compacted sandstone infused with fossils and nutrient-rich marine detritus.
It is mined from natural sources on many continents, and buy it from almost any gardening store, as it is now mainly used as lawn and garden fertilizer.
It is commonly used in organic farming because it is natural and causes no known harm to plants or animals.
Greensand contains about 5% potassium by weight and releases the element very slowly, providing potassium to your lawn for up to 5 years.
Spread it evenly over your grass in the spring.
Use Granite Dust For Long Term Balancing
Granite dust contains 3-6% potassium by weight.
It is an inexpensive and easy product to toss onto your lawn to keep its potassium levels normal for years to come without altering the soil’s pH levels.
Source this from granite quarries, granite stores, or gardening shops.
If you need a quick fix for your potassium levels, granite dust may not be the best solution because it releases its minerals slowly.
But if you are looking for a long-term supply, granite is your guy.
This is best used in clay soil as it helps to keep the clay broken up and draining water properly.
Use after aeration to get it worked into the soil for the best results.
Compost Banana Peels For A Quick Fix
This is an easy one you probably already have lying around.
Banana peels have many nutrients, and potassium is one of the main ones.
Composting is the best way to get the banana peel nutrients into your lawn.
Maybe people plant them directly into the soil when gardening for a quick release of potassium.
However, to get an evenly spread layer of potassium over your whole lawn, add the banana peels to your compost and then spread a layer evenly over your lawn.
Gently rake it into the soil for best results.
It is also possible to shred or food process the peels and then sprinkle over spots of yellowed grass, raking it in gently for a quicker application of potassium into deficient areas.
Use Your Favorite Potash Solution
Similar to greensand, potash is sourced from natural underground deposits from ancient seabeds.
However, instead of being a greenish rock, it is a pink, water-soluble salt.
There are two main products containing potash: Muriate of Potash (aka Potassium Chloride) and Sulfate of Potash (aka Potassium Sulfate or Sul-Po-Mag. See number 7).
Muriate of Potash is a cost-effective and quick-releasing source of potassium.
These products are water-soluble so add it just before or as your plants are growing to benefit from it before it is washed away from watering or rain.
Spray the diluted product directly onto your lawn using liquid versions of potash using a garden hose attachment or hand can.
When using solid forms, apply the product directly onto your lawn using a drop fertilizer to ensure an even coat.
Simultaneously Boost Sulfur And Magnesium Levels With Sul-Po-Mag
Sul-Po-Mag is short for Sulfate of Potassium Magnesium.
If you need to add sulfur and magnesium to your soil and potassium, this blend of potash is a great resource.
It contains 22% potassium by weight and is another water-soluble product that will not alter the soil’s pH.
Broadcast the mineral over your lawn using a drop fertilizer and then lightly water it in.
Burn Cucumber Skins
Believe it or not, burned cucumber skins are an amazing source of potassium.
When dried and/ or burned, nitrogen is released from the skins, and a large amount of potassium is left.
Like bananas, add the skins to your compost to give it a healthy boost or plant them directly into your soil.
This is a great way to reduce waste and give nutrients back into the ground.
Source Lawn Fertilizer
Almost all commercial fertilizers contain potassium because it is one of the three main ingredients for healthy soil.
The three numbers on a bag of fertilizer (i.e., 10-10-10) indicate the three nutrients Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K). Look for a potassium-rich fertilizer.
Purchase some with or without the nitrogen and phosphorus as well, depending on the needs of your lawn.
Evenly spread the fertilizer over your lawn and then water it in, so it does not burn the grass.
Careful not to overwater or fertilize too close to a rainy day, or the fertilizer could wash away and end up in your city’s storm drainage system, which is damaging.
What Is Potassium And Why Is It Important For Lawns?
Potassium is important because plants can yellow and have weak roots and rusted leaves without enough of it.
The plants will be too weak to survive winters, and they will not come back as strong in the spring.
Too much, however, can inhibit the absorption of other vital nutrients and lead to dehydrated plants.
So, it is important to keep the right levels of potassium over the years.
Generally speaking, in the western half of the United States, potassium naturally occurs in high amounts.
In the east, there is a general lack of potassium in the soil.
To ensure you are adding the correct amounts of nutrients, test your soil every one to three years and always follow the instructions on the packaging.
Ask your local gardening experts for additional advice on your region.