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What Chemical Makes Grass Green

Everyone likes to have a lush green lawn of their own where they can sit in the morning with a cup of coffee, looking at the grass bathed in the rising sun. They want to know what chemical makes grass green.

Your kids will also love to play on the green grass mat which is so soft and soothing to look at. Maintaining your lawn healthy and lush green, however, needs a lot of care and a little effort. The most important thing, however, is knowing what you should do and what you shouldn’t.​

There are a number of factors that you must consider to be able to give your lawn what it demands. Don’t worry, however, about doing all that internet search or reading books on “how to make your lawn green”, as in this article, we have covered most of the important points and tips.

So, please stick with this article while we cover these lest you should miss something important.

Before discussing the various steps towards green grass, you must know a little about how the grass gets its typical green color.

What Chemical Makes Grass Green

Nitrogen – The Chemical Responsible for The Green Color of Grass

Nitrogen (N) is one of the primary macronutrients, the others being Potassium (K) and Phosphorus (P). All the fertilizers have mainly these three components in somewhat similar compositions.

What Chemical Makes Grass Green

But why is nitrogen so important for green and healthy grass? Well, it is so because nitrogen is responsible for the green-colored pigment Chlorophyll, which in turn, gives the plants their characteristic green color.

Chlorophyll is the pigment that enables plants to convert water and carbon dioxide into starch, which is the food for the plant.

Also, nitrogen stimulates the growth and development of the grass shoot, which is followed by the growth of the root. This helps the grass to overcome various kinds of stress and also helps to repair any damage because it aids protein build-up. So, nitrogen is integral for green and healthy grass.

Though it is so useful for the grass, excess of nitrogen also can be bad for the grass. Too much nitrogen will lead to the rapid growth of the shoot, which will deplete the carbohydrate reserve, rendering it more vulnerable to attacks by infections and pests.

Not to forget, you’ll have to mow them more often as well. It will also decrease their capacity of retaining moisture, which may lead to dehydration.

Since it is so important to know the right amount of nitrogen that your lawn needs, you should test the chemical composition of the soil of your lawn before adding any fertilizer to it. This leads us to the next section.

Testing the Soil in Your Lawn for Its Ph And Its Nutritional Needs

The pH of The Soil

The pH of the soil is a measure of its acidity or alkalinity on a scale from 0 to 14. A pH of 7 is considered neutral (the pH of the water). A pH of less than 7 indicates that the soil is acidic in nature while that greater than 7 indicates alkalinity.

Most of the plants, including grass, have a favorable pH range in which they can thrive. Grass likes to grow in a soil that is slightly acidic and has its pH in the range 6-7.

The pH of the soil - What Chemical Makes Grass Green
via Pixabay

For measuring the pH of the soil, one of the most accurate, convenient, and quick methods is by using a digital pH meter which you can easily find on Amazon for about $10.

For this, you will have to dig a hole 5-6 inches deep and a few inches wide and fill it with distilled water. Then, immerse the electrodes of the pH meter in the water and wait till you get a stable reading. Repeat this for different sections of your lawn to get a more generalized pH measurement.

If the soil is found to be too acidic, then you can add lime to decrease the acidity. If it is too alkaline instead, you can add organic compost or soil conditioners containing sulfur.

Nutrients Analysis

As has already been briefly discussed earlier, the elements like nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus play a vital role in the growth and development processes.

So, you must ensure that your soil has the right composition of these macronutrients. Soil nutrient analysis, however, is not as simple as pH testing. You better take the help of a professional unit that can perform chemical tests on the soil sample and tell you the concentration of all the main nutrients.

They might also suggest some treatments to remove any nutrient imbalance.

Testing the Soil in Your Lawn for Its Ph And Its Nutritional Needs

A fertilizer generally comprises nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus in a certain proportion mixed with the filler material. When you go for buying fertilizer, you will notice some numbers.

These numbers indicate the proportion of nitrogen, phosphate, and potassium, respectively. For example, a 10-0-6 fertilizer will have 10% nitrogen, 0% phosphate, and 6% phosphorus by weight.

While nitrogen gives the grass a fresh green color and helps in growth, phosphorus ensures healthy roots and potassium maintains the overall health of the grass.

So, you can choose the fertilizer, which stands well on the nutrient requirement of the soil as indicated by the nutrient test.

Safer Brand Ringer Lawn Restore, Lawn Fertilizer - 25 Pounds
 - What Chemical Makes Grass Green
Safer Brand Ringer Lawn Restore 10-0-6 NPK via

The fertilizers come in a variety of types on the basis of the means of application and the rate of nutrient release.

1. Slow-release

Slow-release fertilizers release the nutrients slowly over a long period of time. This prevents the grass from burning due to a sudden excess of nutrients. It also saves you from the need of adding fertilizers every now and then.

2. Granular Fertilizers

This type of fertilizer comes in the form of granules that can be easily and evenly applied in your lawn using a spreader.

3. Liquid Fertilizers

These are water-soluble fertilizers that can be added to the soil to provide them with instant nutrients. This type of fertilizer, however, needs to be applied on a regular basis for the best effects.


So, we have discussed how the grass gets its green color and what you could do to maintain a lush green lawn. We hope that these tips will help you to turn your lawn into the greenest one in your locality, which your neighbors can’t keep themselves from admiring and complimenting.

We also hope that you liked this article and learned something useful from it. Please provide your valuable comments and suggestions which we can thrive from.