A heavy hand with fertilizer can kill a lawn.

Did you know that fertilizer can be toxic to plants?

It must be diluted correctly, mixed with soil or applied only on the surface of the soil (where it will be diluted by rain or watering) to be safe for living plants.

Roots that directly touch any concentrated fertilizer will be killed… and when too many roots die, the rest of the plant soon follows.

Always, always, always read the label fertilizer… and yes, that even applies to organic fertilizer! Then either apply it at the recommended rate, or dilute it further before application.

Larry Hodgson is one of Canada’s best-known garden communicators. He has notably been editor-in-chief of HousePlant Magazine, Fleurs, Plantes et Jardins, À Fleur de Pot and Houseplant Forum magazines and is currently the garden correspondent for Le Soleil and radio garden commentator for CKIA-FM Radio. He has written for many garden publications in both the United States and Canada, including Canadian Gardening, Harrowsmith, Horticulture, Fine Gardening and Organic Gardening. He also speaks frequently to horticultural groups throughout Canada and the U.S. His book credits include The Garden Lover’s Guide to Canada, Complete Guide to Houseplants, Making the Most of Shade, Perennials for Every Purpose, Annuals for Every Purpose, and Houseplants for Dummies, as well as nearly 60 other titles in English and French. He is a past president of the Garden Writers Association (now Garden Communicators International) and the winner of the prestigious 2006 Garden Media Promoter Award offered by the Perennial Plant Association. He resides in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

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