Grow the lawn of your dreams with Jonathan Green! If you’re looking for grass seed that germinates quickly, grows thick, dark green grass, and can withstand a variety of climate conditions, Black Beauty Grass Seed is right for you! Read more.
Our signature Black Beauty grass seed was created by cross-breeding two unique species of tall fescue grasses. The first was found in the frigid climate of northern Michigan, possesses a naturally dark green color, and can withstand freezing temperatures. The second was found on the edge of the Sahara Desert, with the ability to grow roots up to four feet deep, allowing it to suck up moisture from deep within the earth. It also has a waxy coating on the grass blade like the skin of a cactus that protects it from high heat and drought. We cross-bred these two types of grass to produce our one-of-a-kind, Black Beauty tall fescue grass seed.
To learn more about why our grass seed is a favorite among homeowners and professionals alike, visit our Why Choose Black Beauty Grass Seed page!
Which Grass Seed Should I Buy?
With all of the grass seed varieties available, you may wonder which one is truly right for you. Here are a few questions you can answer to help guide you through the process:
- Do you live in an area ideal for growing cool-season or warm-season grass?
- Does the area receive full sun, shade, or partial shade?
- Does the area receive frequent heavy traffic? (ex. Dogs and/or kids playing or running on the lawn)?
Once you’ve answered these questions, you can narrow down your lawn seed options and determine which grass type is best suited for you and your individual needs.
Types of Grass Seed
Before you buy grass seed, it’s important to know the different varieties of grasses. Grass seed varieties fall under two categories: cool-season grasses and warm-season grasses.
Cool-season grass types are grasses that grow best in the colder weather during fall and spring and go dormant between late fall and winter. They are primarily found in areas of the northern half of the United States. Warm-season grass types are grasses that grow best in the summer and go dormant in early fall. They are typically found in southern states that experience long, hot summers and high average temperatures above 75°F.
Cool Season Grass
Tall fescue is a popular cool-season grass variety due to its rich, dark green color, adaptability, and wear and tear tolerance. It is also known for its deep root system and ability to withstand shade.
Tall fescue can grow in a variety of climates, making it a top choice among homeowners in the northern half of the United States. Jonathan Green includes our signature Black Beauty tall fescue in many of our grass seed mixtures. Black Beauty is naturally dark green and grows upright and uniform. It’s often compared in appearance to Kentucky bluegrass but is preferred for its ability to withstand heat and drought.
Kentucky bluegrass is best known for its durability and gorgeous, blue-green hue. These qualities have made it popular among sod growers. It has a rhizome structure that allows it to grow horizontally and can self-repair patches and bare spots making it ideal for sports fields. Kentucky bluegrass requires more water and has a longer germination time than other cool-season grasses.
Visit our Kentucky Bluegrass resource page to learn more about this cool-season grass type!
Perennial ryegrass is valued for its fine grass blades and ability to germinate and establish a lawn quickly. This type of grass seed is used to plant both temporary lawns in southern states and permanent lawns in northern parts of the United States, as it performs well in areas with moderate summers and colder winters.
Perennial ryegrass has several remarkable qualities, including high wear tolerance, an ability to withstand light shade, and the natural ability to suppress other plants, like pesky lawn weeds. Although it spreads slowly due to its bunch-forming growth habit, it creates a beautiful lawn when paired with other grass types, like in many of our Black Beauty mixtures.
Warm Season Grass
Jonathan Green does not sell warm-season grass seed, however, we’ve included information below for you to learn more about the different types of warm-season grasses and their unique characteristics.
Bermudagrass is preferred by many southern homeowners for its ability to quickly fill bare spots, endure high traffic, and withstand heat and drought. It performs best south of the transition zone with full sun.
To learn more about this durable warm-season grass, visit our Bermudagrass resource page!
Zoysia grass is a low-maintenance, warm-season grass most notable for its heat and drought tolerance, dense growth, and ability to withstand heavy foot traffic. Even though it is a warm-season grass, it is known to have decent cold tolerance. Similar to Kentucky bluegrass, this grass seed spreads by rhizomes and produces a beautiful, emerald hue.
It is most suitable for both the southern part of the United States and areas near the transition zone and performs best in areas with full sun. You may want to plant zoysia grass if you want a great-looking lawn without much work, as this grass won’t require large amounts of fertilizer or water to maintain it. Like most warm-season grasses, however, it will go dormant in the winter and turn brown.
Centipede grass is another low-maintenance, warm-season grass known for its heat and shade tolerance. It has wider stems than other warm-season grasses, like bermudagrass and zoysia grass. Centipede grass grows best in the southeastern area of the United States, specifically the Carolinas and parts of the Texas Gulf Coast.
It has great heat tolerance and requires less frequent mowing and dethatching. Furthermore, this type of grass seed doesn’t experience a true winter dormancy period and will maintain its green color in some climates. However, it has little to no drought tolerance and won’t hold up against heavy foot traffic. It also has strict soil and climate requirements, as it prefers sandy, acidic soils.
The Main Takeaway
We know that lawn care is not one-size-fits-all. That’s why we provide a wide range of grass seed options to cater to your unique needs. We believe selecting grass seed should be a seamless process so you can start growing the lawn of your dreams as soon as possible!
Explore our wide selection of lawn seed mixtures today and buy grass seed that’s a perfect fit for your lawn.
Soil health and lawn health go hand in hand. Before you can grow beautiful, rich, dark green grass above the ground, you have to maintain healthy soil life underground. At Jonathan Green, we believe that having loose, biologically active soil with a balanced pH is the best foundation for your lawn to grow healthy and strong. Read more.
Explore Jonathan Green Soil Amendments
Jonathan Green soil amendment products are designed to address a variety of soil issues, such as compaction, water retention, nutrient availability and acidic and alkaline soil pH. Our soil foods are one-of-a-kind and formulated with natural ingredients to help you achieve a healthy lawn and soil, without the use of harsh chemicals!
What Are Soil Amendments?
Soil amendments or soil conditioners are anything added to your lawn’s soil to change the physical nature and improve its texture, aeration and ability to retain water. They also often adjust pH, creating a better environment for roots to grow and improving your grass plants' ability to absorb nutrients.
Soil amendments are often confused with lawn fertilizer, as they both are used to improve the overall health of your lawn. Fertilizer supplies the soil with nutrients needed for grass growth, while soil amendments help to improve the structure and texture of the soil, allowing your grass roots to grow deep and strong.
Soil amendments aid in creating a healthy environment to grow grass in. When added to your soil, they encourage the growth of stronger roots and make it easier for your lawn to access air, water, and nutrients.
Benefits of Using Soil Amendments
One benefit of using a soil amendment is that it improves the overall health of your soil and lawn. Many soil amendments contain humates, which are organic substances that help to stimulate healthy biological activity in the soil. Having healthy, biologically active soil creates the best foundation for your grass to grow in.
Another benefit of adding soil conditioners to your lawn care routine is that they help to improve water drainage and the flow of oxygen to grass roots.
When soil is hard or compacted, grass roots cannot grow deep into the soil to access necessary air, water, and nutrients for healthy grass growth. This can lead to a number of lawn issues, including the growth of weeds, thin, patchy grass, and water pooling in areas of your yard.
Using soil foods fortified with gypsum (a loosening agent), such as Jonathan Green Love Your Soil, helps to release trapped nutrients in hard, compacted soil, improves air and water flow, and encourages the growth of deeper roots.
Soil amendments can also help to balance the levels of acidity and alkalinity of your soil. If you struggle with weeds, light green or yellowing grass or bare spots in your lawn, your soil’s pH levels may be unbalanced.
To determine if your soil’s pH levels are within a healthy range, you can use a soil pH test kit or send a small sample of your soil to your local cooperative extension office. For reference, healthy lawns flourish with a pH that is slightly acidic to neutral (between 6.2 and 7.0).
When your soil pH is unbalanced, it prevents your grass from accessing the nutrients it needs for growth. Using soil conditioner formulated with elements like sulfur, calcium sulfate, and calcium carbonate help to correct unbalanced soil pH. Check out Jonathan Green Mag-I-Cal® for Lawns in Acidic Soil or Mag-I-Cal® Plus for Lawns in Alkaline & Hard Soil to restore balance to your soil.
Choosing a Soil Amendment for Your Lawn
Choosing the right soil amendment for your lawn and soil type is important in order to address specific soil issues. Here are a few steps to select the best soil amendment to address your soil’s specific needs:
- Test your soil (a healthy range is between 6.2 and 7.0)
- Perform a soil compaction test.
- Once you have your results follow the guide below on which product you need to use.
If the pH of your soil is balanced and not compacted, then you probably don’t need a soil amendment. If your soil pH is above 7 or below 6, or if it is compacted, then it needs some help from one of the following soil amendments.
- Mag-I-Cal for Lawns in Acidic Soil- use this for soil with a pH that is below 6
- Mag-I-Cal Plus for Lawns in Acidic and Hard Soil- use this for soil that has a pH below 6 AND is compacted
- Mag-I-Cal Plus for Lawns in Alkaline and Hard Soil- use this for soil that has a pH above 7 AND is compacted
- Love Your Soil- use this for soil that is compacted, but has a balanced pH
Types of Soil Amendments
There are several types of soil amendments you can use to improve the physical properties of your soil. Whether it’s to help fix an unbalanced soil pH or loosen compacted soil, each type of soil amendment has its own unique role in creating a healthier environment for you to plant grass seed. Here are some common soil conditioners used in lawn care:
Lime is an element that is commonly added to soils to help raise the pH of acidic soil. Though its fruit-bearing name is deceiving, the form of “lime” used in lawn care is actually made from ground limestone rock and contains a concentration of magnesium carbonate and calcium carbonate, both of which help to adjust low soil pH and improve the availability of nutrients to your lawn.
Adding lime is a common solution to adjust soil pH that is too acidic, however in most cases of unbalanced soil, it can take many bags of dusty lime to do this. A cost-effective, nutrient-packed alternative to this is Jonathan Green Mag-I-Cal Soil Food, which offers the adjusting power of up to 15 bags of lime and includes calcium carbonate in a completely soluble form to help rapidly adjust soil pH upwards.
Sulfur, also known as elemental sulfur, is another ingredient added to soil amendments that lowers the pH in soils that are too alkaline. Soil microbes feed on elemental sulfur and produce its soil pH-lowering effect.
Fast-acting sulfur is a key ingredient in Mag-I-Cal® Plus for Lawns in Alkaline & Hard Soil which works with calcium sulfate to lower high soil pH levels so that grass plants can access nutrients in the soil.
Calcium sulfate, or gypsum, is a quick-acting mineral that loosens and aerates compacted soil. It is best used on hard, clay soils that are dry, compacted, and challenging to grow healthy grass in. When soil particles are tightly compressed, rates of water infiltration and drainage are reduced and grass plants struggle to grow deep roots. Many people use a core aerator to loosen compacted soil, but this is only a temporary solution as the holes will fill back in over time and recompact.
For a natural, long-term solution to this problem, you can add a gypsum-enriched soil amendment, such as Love Your Soil, which provides natural aeration, improves root growth and enhances water penetration.
When it comes to maintaining a healthy lawn, there’s no way around it - fertilizer is key! In order to grow healthy green grass that lasts year after year, you need to feed your lawn. Read more.
Jonathan Green lawn fertilizer products are packed with key lawn nutrients - nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium - for vigorous grass growth, deep roots, and the ability to resist drought and disease.
Our fertilizers are specially formulated to nourish and strengthen both cool and warm-season lawns from top to bottom. If you are seeding a new lawn and need starter fertilizer or want to prevent crabgrass while fertilizing your lawn you’ve come to the right place!
What is a Lawn Fertilizer?
Lawn fertilizer is a dressed-up term for “lawn food”. Just like humans need food to survive, plants do too! Lawn food provides your grass with the nutrients necessary to build cell walls, encourage strong root growth, and ward off weeds and disease.
Why Your Lawn Needs Fertilizer
All lawns require a healthy dose of macronutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium), and micronutrients, (iron, manganese, and zinc).
Fertilizer supplies grass plants with these nutrients to grow healthy, green grass and maintain a lush appearance. Just as we take multivitamins packed with nutrients to keep our bodies healthy and strong, lawns grow best when they are supplemented with vitamins and minerals too.
Lawn fertilizer also helps to strengthen nutrient-deficient lawns. Lawns with nutrient deficiencies are more likely to have problems with weeds, patchiness, and brown spots. Fertilizer arms your lawn with a defense system of nutrients to combat existing lawn problems and prevent future ones.
Most lawn nutrients are water soluble, meaning regular precipitation and lawn watering cause them to leach out of the soil, and need to be replenished over time. Applying grass fertilizer helps to restore these nutrients back into the soil.
Nitrogen, for example, is an essential lawn nutrient that needs to be replenished regularly as it moves through your lawn’s soil with rain. Jonathan Green Green Up Lawn Fertilizer features special slow-release nitrogen that is unaffected by excessive rainfall and provides your lawn with a steady feeding of nutrients for less surge growth and greener, healthier grass.
Understanding the NPK Ratio on Fertilizer Bags
Every lawn fertilizer has a formula of elements (shown on the front of the bag) called the NPK ratio, which stands for Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium (K). This formula tells you the amount of each element included in the fertilizer. Each of these elements serves a distinct purpose for your lawn’s health:
- Nitrogen supplements the rich, green color of your grass and encourages leaf growth.
- Phosphorus stimulates the growth of deeper roots and the sprouting of new grass seedlings.
- Potassium aids in drought and disease resistance, protection from heavy foot traffic, and extreme weather conditions.
Every lawn is unique and has specific nutritional needs that may require more of one nutrient than another. For example, some lawns may need more nitrogen than others to repair damage from summer stress. This is what led Jonathan Green to create a fall lawn fertilizer that is rich in both nitrogen and potassium to repair summer damage and build deeper roots to prepare your lawn for winter stress. When buying fertilizer, make sure you choose the one that is right for you.
Choosing the Best Fertilizer for Your Lawn
With all of the fertilizer formulations available, it can be confusing to know which one is right for your lawn. Here are some things to consider when selecting grass fertilizer:
- Grass type - Do you have cool-season or warm-season grass?
- Time of year - Is it spring, summer, fall, or winter?
- Lawn issues - Do you have weeds or yellow spots?
- The condition of your lawn - Are you starting a new lawn or seeding an existing one?
Once you identify your lawn’s individual needs, you can narrow down your fertilizer options and find the one that’s right for you.
Quick Release vs. Slow Release Fertilizer
Most lawn fertilizers are classified as either quick-release or slow-release. Quick-release fertilizers release nutrients rapidly into your soil, making the nutrients readily available for your lawn to use right away. These types of fertilizers are usually water-soluble, meaning they will dissolve quickly into your lawn’s soil and be used by your grass immediately. This is a great option if you want quick greening, especially on a newly planted lawn.
Slow-release fertilizers steadily release nutrients into the soil over a period of time. This type of fertilizer is best for established lawns and has many benefits, including a longer-lasting green-up, uniform application, slower growth, and a reduced risk of nutrients leaching from the soil.
While you won’t see any instant green-up like a quick-release fertilizer, you can expect more even-paced grass growth and longer-lasting results with slow-release fertilizer like Jonathan Green Green Up Lawn Fertilizer. This special formula offers a slow and steady release of nitrogen to prevent a surge of grass growth in early spring and reduces the number of grass clippings when you mow.
Weed and Feed
When a lawn fertilizer is combined with an herbicide, it is known as “weed and feed.” These two-in-one products offer the convenience of controlling lawn weeds while simultaneously feeding your lawn. Weed and feed products often offer pre-emergent control, which prevents the weed seeds from germinating, or post-emergent control, which kills actively growing weeds. Jonathan Green Green Up with Crabgrass Preventer, however, prevents crabgrass seeds from germinating, AND kills existing crabgrass up to the three-leaf stage.
Using a new seeding fertilizer helps to get grass seedlings off to a great start! Starter fertilizer helps supply seedlings with the nutrients they need to develop deep, dense roots and promote healthy germination and grass growth. Most starter fertilizers contain a high amount of phosphorus to build strong roots. If you’re seeding, overseeding, or even laying sod, use a starter fertilizer that can be applied the same day you seed.
Fall Lawn Fertilizer
Your lawn should be fed throughout the year, but especially in the fall. Fall fertilizers give your lawn a boost of nutrients to repair summer damage and withstand cold, winter weather. Using one that is high in potassium, such as Jonathan Green Winter Survival Fall Lawn Fertilizer, helps your grass build stronger cell walls to endure times of stress like harsh weather conditions.
Organic lawn fertilizer is an eco-friendly way to feed your lawn without the use of chemicals. Organic grass fertilizers require a bit more patience than synthetic fertilizers, as soil microbes need more time to break down nutrients so they can be absorbed by grass roots. The benefits are well worth it, however, as you won’t risk burning your lawn and it’s safe to use around kids and pets!
When to Fertilize Your Lawn
Timely fertilizer applications are a key component of maintaining a healthy lawn year-round. By feeding your lawn throughout the year, you encourage the growth of dark green grass with strong roots and resistance to weeds and disease.
You should add lawn fertilizer 3 to 4 times a year (early spring, late spring, summer, and fall) during the active growth period for your grass type.
For cool-season grasses, such as tall fescue and perennial ryegrass, this means focusing on applying fertilizer in the spring and fall. Warm-season grasses, such as bermudagrass, St. Augustine, and zoysia, experience an active period of growth during the spring and summer. You should feed warm-season grasses every 6 - 8 weeks during this time.
Applying a fall fertilizer before the first fall frost helps any lawn, cool or warm season, prepare for harsh, winter weather conditions.
For a full guide to feeding your lawn at the right time (including a helpful seasonal application reference tool), visit our When to Fertilize Your Lawn page!
Weed Control & Prevention
Most people agree that lawn weeds are unsightly and a pain to deal with. Weeds, such as crabgrass and clover, can quickly take over an otherwise healthy lawn. Read more.
Explore Jonathan Green Weed Control & Prevention Products
To avoid a weed infestation, it’s important to quickly deal with any weeds that pop up. Using a weed control product will help to eliminate broadleaf and grassy weeds from creeping into your yard. With a plethora of options available, however, it can be confusing to know which one is right for you.
Jonathan Green offers a wide variety of weed control and weed prevention products to help kill existing broadleaf weeds and prevent grassy weeds. Our premium herbicides are specially formulated to kill over 200+ types of lawn weeds. To help you tackle your weed problem, read below for information about different types of lawn weeds and the specific type of product you’ll need to keep your lawn weed free.
Why Weed Control Is Important
When weeds invade your lawn, they’re competing for the same nutrients, air, and water that your grass needs to thrive. Weeds are often the first to soak up nutrients from fertilizer, meaning your lawn’s growth isn’t fueled as much as it should be. Put simply, without proper weed control, your grass plants are competing with weeds to survive in your yard. This will make your lawn more prone to issues like disease, insect infestation, and drought.
Just like if humans don’t get enough sleep, water, and vitamins, their immune system is weakened- the same goes for grass plants. If weeds are soaking up all the nutrients your grass needs, then it will struggle. However, if you put down a weed preventer, your grass will not need to compete for resources.
Types of Lawn Weeds
There are two types of lawn weeds: broadleaf weeds and grassy weeds. Most types of weed controls target either broadleaf weeds OR grassy weeds, not both at the same time so it’s important to identify the type of lawn weed you have prior to selecting a weed control for optimal results.
Broadleaf weeds are distinguishable by their deep taproots and pronounced flowers once they reach maturity. Some common examples of broadleaf weeds include dandelions, chickweed, and clover.
Grassy weeds are slightly more difficult to spot, as they look like and often blend in with the rest of your lawn. They are identifiable by their thick, unsightly leaves and rounded stems, with alternating leaf blades on each side. Some common examples of grassy weeds include crabgrass, poa annua, and goosegrass.
Types of Weed Controls
Aside from being categorized into broadleaf and grassy weed controls, weed killers are also formulated to offer either pre or post-emergent control of lawn weeds. Pre-emergent weed controls work underground to prevent weeds from growing and overtaking your lawn. Post-emergent weed controls kill weeds that have already grown above ground to prevent them from going to seed, taking over your lawn, and becoming a recurring problem.
Pre-emergent Weed Control
Pre-emergent weed controls provide preventative treatment for most lawn weeds. If you want to get ahead of a weed problem in your lawn, this may be the right treatment for you.
The magic of how pre-emergent weed control works begins in the lawn's soil. Most pre-emergent weed controls create a barrier at or just below the surface of the soil to prevent weed seeds from germinating and growing into a full-blown problem.
Pre-emergents work best with grassy weeds, such as crabgrass, as its plants produce seeds that lay dormant in the fall until they germinate in spring when most people find them in their lawns. Because crabgrass is harder to treat when it’s reached maturity (past the third leaf stage), it’s best to apply a pre-emergent in early spring to prevent the weed seeds from germinating.
Where most pre-emergents only work to prevent weed seeds from germinating, Jonathan Green Crabgrass Preventer plus Lawn Fertilizer offers both pre AND post-emergent control of crabgrass up to the three-leaf stage. It has fewer harmful ingredients than other crabgrass preventers and includes fertilizer to promote an early spring green-up.
Post-emergent Weed Control
Post-emergent weed controls work to kill lawn weeds that have already germinated and grown above ground. They serve as damage control, by coming in and attacking established weeds at the root to ensure they won’t grow back.
Post-emergent weed control proves to be most effective on weeds that are actively growing. Dandelions, for example, are broadleaf weeds that most people find actively growing in their lawns in early spring. While you can hand-pull small infestations, using post-emergent weed control, like Jonathan Green Weed & Feed or Jonathan Green Lawn Weed Control ensures you kill the weed and eliminate its root.
Some post-emergent weed controls are also coupled with fertilizer to provide a deep greening to your lawn while controlling weeds. Jonathan Green Weed & Feed includes fertilizer to gently feed the lawn while controlling over 250+ broadleaf weeds! This can save you both time and money, by offering the convenience of two treatments in one easy-to-use product.
Natural Weed Control
Natural weed control is an eco-friendly alternative to controlling weeds in your lawn. Most natural weed controls are composed of non-chemical ingredients, such as corn gluten, which hinders root formation, killing the new weeds soon after they germinate.
Natural weed controls may require a bit of patience in comparison to synthetic weed controls, as they may take more than one application to control severe lawn weed infestations. Even so, using natural weed prevention products is ultimately beneficial for your lawn, family, and the environment!
Jonathan Green Corn Gluten Weed Preventer is specially formulated with patented corn gluten technology to provide pre-emergent control of both broadleaf and grassy weeds, while gently feeding the lawn. This eco-friendly, double-action weed control product is also gentle enough to use in flower gardens and planting beds. It is safe to apply around kids and pets and is our only weed control that will prevent both broadleaf and grassy weeds.
Why Choose Jonathan Green Weed Control
There are several weed control products out there, making it difficult to identify the right one for you. At Jonathan Green, we provide a variety of weed control products that are either natural or synthetic. Our natural weed preventer is made with non-chemical ingredients, such as corn gluten, to gently give your grass the nourishment it needs while eliminating a variety of weeds. Our synthetic weed control and prevention products quickly and effectively prevent weed seeds from germinating and tackle existing weed infestations.
You dedicate a lot of time and care to maintain the health and look of your lawn. Trust Jonathan Green’s selection of weed control and prevention products to provide effective, top to bottom control of weeds in your lawn.
Organic Lawn Products
Want to grow a dark-green lawn without the use of chemicals? Jonathan Green organic lawn care products are both safe to use around kids and pets and made with all-natural ingredients!
Insect & Disease Control
Shop our insect controls to kill surface and soil insects, such as grubs, chinch bugs, and ants. Prevent lawn fungus damage caused by dollar spot, brown patch, and more.
Annual Lawn Programs
Jonathan Green Annual Lawn Programs are an easy, four-step solution to care for your yard all year long! Fertilize, control weeds, adjust soil pH, loosen compaction, and prevent winter damage.
Choose from our variety of rotary and handheld spreaders that quickly and evenly distribute grass seed, fertilizers, weed controls, and more.
Lawn care tools and accessories are the perfect add-ons to any lawn care routine! Choose from grass seed mats, soil pH test kits, seedling cover, ice melt, and more.