Get to Know Our Ingredients

You know that old adage that says, “It’s what’s on the inside that counts”? It applies as much to lawn care as it does people, which is why we at Sunday work painstakingly to find the hardest-working, most punch-packing ingredients for every single product.

Scroll on to see what we’re made of.

Macronutrients

nitrogen (N)

Not only is nitrogen an essential element for all living things, but also it’s what your grass needs the most—and it’s the first number you’ll see in those fertilizer ratios. You may recall from biology class that 80% of the air around us is already nitrogen (if so, pat yourself on the back!). But it’s not so readily available in soil, and even then, plants can’t use it until it’s converted into nitrate or ammonium (1). That’s where we come in. By encouraging the production of chlorophyll, nitrogen promotes rapid growth and lush, green color—basically, two of the main things you want from your lawn. No nitrogen? No growth. Period.

Found in: Lawn nutrients

 

phosphorus (P)

Phosphorus is another one of the Big Three nutrients, and the P in N-P-K. It’s present in smaller amounts in plant tissue, but it’s working hard behind the scenes helping out with rooting, seedling development, cell division, and the absorption of nutrients (1). But there’s more to the story. Due to overfertilization and runoff, many regions are experiencing eutrophication, which causes mineral buildup and algal blooms in bodies of water. To reduce any negative environmental impacts, Sunday nutrient pouches use an extremely targeted and limited dose of phosphorus for those customers that have a deficiency in their soil.

Found in: Lawn nutrients

 

potassium (K)

Rounding out the macronutrients is potassium (its chemical symbol, K, comes from the neo-Latin kalium). It plays a vital role in regulating several physiological processes, the most important of which is activating enzymes used in protein, sugar, and starch synthesis (i.e. converting food into energy!). It moves readily through soil and also helps maintain turgor pressure, which keeps plants from drooping. If your lawn is deficient in potassium, you may not notice obvious visual signs or color changes, but your lawn will be more susceptible to drought, winter injury, and disease (1). Bananas, anyone?

Found in: Lawn nutrients

Secondary & Micronutrients

calcium

Along with magnesium and sulfur, calcium is considered a secondary macronutrient in lawn fertilizers. It’s most beneficial on soil that is overly acidic (this is where your soil test comes in handy!), because neutralizing soil pH helps plants absorb the nutrients they need to grow (1). Calcium also acts as something of a shield—a barrier between a plant’s cells and potential pathogens such as bacteria and viruses. Pretty cool? We think so.

Found In: Lawn nutrients

 

iron

Did you know that plants pump iron too? Well, kind of. An essential micronutrient, iron helps your grass develop a dark emerald green color; in fact, a major symptom of iron-deficiency in your grass is chlorosis, or yellow mottling of the blades. But this is about more than just aesthetics. That darker green will help your grass warm up more quickly in the spring, thus kick-starting growth! Iron also plays a starring role in a variety of vital mechanisms including respiration, chlorophyll synthesis, and nitrogen metabolism (1).

Found in: Pet Patch, lawn nutrients

Soil Amendments

surfactant

Let’s review some chemistry 101! Like all compounds, soil surfaces and liquid nutrients have a molecular charge. If those charges are not attracted to each other, the nutrients will simply runoff and be wasted. Enter surfactants. These “surface acting agents” reduce that surface tension by breaking down adhesive properties, thus improving a product’s ability to penetrate the soil and be absorbed more evenly (1). This is particularly helpful for improving patchy areas in your grass, and it can really improve moisture retention in soil that dries too quickly.

Found in: Heat Defense, Pet Patch

 

humic acid

Derived from leonardite coal, humic acid is one of the most concentrated forms of organic material available to your soil. It’s often referred to as a “soil conditioner,” which means it can increase aeration, water-holding capacity, and nitrogen uptake. Better nutrient uptake makes for a more efficient fertilizer—and we’re all about that efficient, targeted approach! 

Found in: Pet Patch, lawn nutrients

Biostimulants

soy protein

As a natural source of nitrogen used frequently in organic farming, soy protein is great for boosting lush grass growth and helping with plant stability over time. It provides a slow release of nutrients, which has a number of benefits: Lower risk of leaf burning, sustained grass growth, and less leaching (2). And, importantly, it results in similar plant growth and quality as synthetic fertilizers. Yay! But there is one big difference. Because soybeans sequester carbon dioxide during their growth cycle, they reduce the impact of warming on our climate (3). Also yay!

Found in: Lawn nutrients

 

seaweed

It’s not just for sushi! This sustainably harvested plant is filled with powerhouse minerals and nutrients that help your grass grow lush and green (think nitrogen, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, and … well, the list goes on). What’s more, its low cellulose content allows it to break down quickly—meaning it gets to work on your soil right away. It’s rich in cytokinins, which are often called “stay green” hormones because of their ability to slow chlorophyll degradation and enhance root growth. Finally, seaweed is high in moisture, which helps your soil stay saturated for longer and reduces your need to water as often. Win-win!   

Found in: Pet Patch, lawn nutrients

 

molasses

“Why am I feeding my lawn sugar?” We’re glad you asked! In addition to being a natural surfactant, molasses feeds the microbes in your soil to help build its fertility. It contains small amounts of key nutrients like manganese, magnesium, copper, and vitamin B-6. And the main reason it stands out? It’s an industrial byproduct, which means we can give a second life to something that would otherwise go to waste! Save your soil, and save the planet while you’re at it.

Found in: Lawn nutrients

 

beet juice extract

Beet juice extract is another industrial byproduct that works hard for your lawn. It contains glycinebetaine, which helps plants cope with drought stress by stabilizing cell membranes. It’s non-toxic, environmentally safe, and water soluble. Finally, it’s been shown to increase the rate of photosynthesis in stressed plants (4)! 

Found in: Lawn nutrients

Naturally Derived Pesticides

pyrethrin

This powerful pesticide is botanically derived and highly effective against a variety of pests, including ants, mosquitoes, moths, flies, cockroaches, beetles, spiders, mites, and fleas. It’s biodegradable (great for the environment!), safe for people and pets when used properly, and comes from chrysanthemum flowers. But don’t let its cute origins fool you—it works on contact by attacking the insects’ nervous system. Overall, we love it because it helps reduce out-of-control pest populations while avoiding the residual effects of long-lasting pesticides.

Found in: Bug Doom

 

spinosad

A natural substance (“biopesticide”) produced by a soil bacterium, spinosad contains a neurotoxin that affects a variety of insects like fire ants, thrips, leafminers, mosquitos, fruit flies, and more (5). For colony control, it’s often formulated as mound drench or bait granules that ants carry back to the mound—working quickly and effectively on contact. Bonus? Many formulations are approved for organic gardening (6), and it’s non-toxic to pets. In fact, many pet soaps include spinosad to—you guessed it!—keep away bugs. 

Found in: Ant Adios, Fire Ant Fighter

 

iron

Wait, iron again? This hardworking element is a key component of our nutrient pouches and helps your lawn grow lush and green, but it’s deadly to weeds! Because iron doesn’t volatilize (a.k.a., evaporate) once it’s on the plant, iron-based herbicides are safer than many traditional products. Only broadleaf weeds (like dandelions and spurge) will absorb it in quantities high enough to cause necrosis—which looks like drying out then turning black within a few hours of application—so it’s safe to spray around your grass! 

Found in: Dandelion Doom

 

herbicidal soap

The active ingredient in this fact-acting, powerful potion is “ammoniated soap of fatty acids.” In essence, it works to break down the leaf cuticle and destroy the integrity of the leaf cells, which leads to rapid leaf death. In fact, you may begin to see results in as little as 20 minutes (7)! It’s biodegradable and approved for organic gardening, and it won’t harm your trees (i.e., great for treating poison ivy vines). However, it is non-selective, which means it can damage your grass.

Found in: Weed Warrior

 

cedar oil

An essential oil derived from the wood of various conifers (typically in the pine or cypress families), cedar oil is an effective fungicide and insect repellent. It targets mosquitoes, ticks, and moths especially well, killing adult insects on contact by dissolving their exoskeletons. As an oil applied to open water, it also targets mosquitos, ticks, and fleas in the larval stage (8). Because of its low mammalian toxicity and low risk to the environment, the EPA considers it a minimum-risk pesticide.

Found in: Nix Ticks, Mosquito Deleto

 

lemongrass oil

In addition to its invigorating verbena scent, lemongrass oil is prized for its knockdown efficacy and repellency against mosquitos. It is a common ingredient in many global cuisines (in other words, non-toxic to humans!), but its active agent, citral, is a powerful insecticide that controls the adults of three different mosquito species: Aedes aegypti, Culex quinquefasciatus and Anopheles dirus (9).

Found in: Mosquito Deleto

Cited Sources

  1. Turfgrass Fertilization: A Basic Guide for Professional Turfgrass Managers. PennState Extension.
  2. Brown, Diane. Benefits of Using Lawn Fertilizers Containing Slow Release Nitrogen. Michigan State University Extension.
  3. Behrens, Jake. Soy Biocomposite Turfgrass Fertilizer. Iowa State University.
  4. Foliar Application of Glycinebetaine—a Novel Product from Sugar Beet—as an Approach to Increase Tomato Yield. Science Direct.
  5. Organic Fire Ant Control. Mississippi State University Extension.
  6. Williamson, Joey. Controlling Fire Ants in the Vegetable Garden. Clemson Cooperative Extension.
  7. Koski, Tony. Natural Herbicides for Landscape Weed Management. Colorado State University Extension.
  8. Cedarwood Oil Profile. Cornell University Library.
  9. Baker, Brian P. and Grant, Jennifer A. Lemongrass Oil Profile. New York State Integrated Pest Management Program.