Beer, Detergents for Your Lawn – False Claims

I have mentioned before my disdain for television hucksters touting lawn care “formulas” made from household products. The presentation is enthusiastic but the recommendations contain only tiny nuggets of scientific truth.

It is true that household ammonia contains a small amount of the nitrogen fertilizer that turfgrass needs – but it evaporates before becoming available to the plants it is sprayed onto.

It is verifiably true that detergents can make other chemicals spread and stick to the leaves of plants – but the proportion of detergent should be only a few drops (not tablespoons) per gallon. Otherwise, the detergent will burn the plant leaves like a herbicide would.

It is true that soil micro-organisms need and consume carbohydrates – but they specialize in the complex carbohydrates found in plants, not the simple sugars found in soft drinks and beer.

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