Lawn Care Glossary

Lawn Care Glossary

There may be some terms you are unfamiliar with so we want to help by helping you understand more about what’s going on in your lawn. If there should still be any questions left, don’t hesitate to contact us.


A pesticide used to kill fungi.

Herbicide Postemergence (POST)

Herbicide that needs to be applied after weeds emerge in order to be effective.

Herbicide Preemergence (PRE)

Herbicide that needs to be applied prior to weed emergence in order to be effective. Can be applied before or after turf establishment. Rainfall or irrigation is often needed to move the chemical into the top few inches of the soil for best activity.


A pesticide used to kill insects.


Nitrogen is the most important element in turfgrass culture. It is required for the formation of chlorophyll which is then used for photosynthesis. Nitrogen is also found in numerous plant proteins, amino acids, enzymes, and vitamins. Nitrogen is primarily absorded through the roots in the nitrate (NO3-) form, but can also be taken up in the ammonia form (NH4+). Nitrogen rich fertilizers are often used to enhance and maintain turf appearance (green color) and density. Nitrogen sources are normally referred to as quick release or slow release. Quick release sources (e.g., ammonium nitrate) are water-soluable and produce fast turf greening. These sources have a short residual and a high burn potential. Slow release sources of nitrogen (e.g., IBDU, Urea formaldehyde) are typically organic materials broken down over time by soil microorganisms. These materials produce slow slow turf green-up, have a long residual, and low burn potential.


An underground creeping stem which can produce roots and shoots at each node.

Soil Compaction

Soils that are subject to heavy traffic are prone to compaction (compression). Compacted soils reduce drainage, increase runoff, and inhibit root growth. Aerifying (aeration) helps to alleviate compaction.


An above-ground creeping stem that can produce roots and shoots at each node.


A sand or prepared soil mix applied to the turf to help smooth the surface, enhance establishment, and reduce thatch buildup.

Selective herbicide

One that can be applied to a mixed stand of turfgrass and weeds that will selectively kill certain weeds without injuring the turfgrasses.

plant which includes the stem apex, unelongated internodes, and lower nodes from which secondary roots begin.

N-P-K Ratio

Fertilizer labels display a three-number ratio (ex: 16-4-8) that is the nutrient analysis in that type of fertilizer. Fertilizer “macronutrients” and their chemical symbols are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). 

Top Raleigh Lawn Care Services
Top Raleigh Lawn Care Services