Hi Rusty. I often tell folks they have to unlearn some things before they can go organic. One thing is that with organic materials, you can almost always use all the products or materials on the same day because there is no interaction with each other. That's one of the cool benefits.
Corn meal is a protein fertilizer. So are soy meal, alfalfa pellets, cottonseed meal, coffee grounds, and other ground up seeds, nuts, and beans. It takes three weeks to see any greening effect but you should see considerable improvement after that. The application rate for these types of fertilizers is 10-20 pounds per 1,000 square feet. If you accidentally apply 40, 80, or 200 pounds per 1,000 square feet, you will not do any damage. Over 500 pounds per 1,000 then you have to worry about smothering the turf (and wasting a lot of money
). You might also get some fragrances you never smelled before!! So keep it down to a normal application and you'll see good results for a good cost.
Your brown spots might be caused by fungus or grubs in the soil. The solution for fungus is to fertilize with corn meal. Corn meal, besides being a great organic fertilizer, has strong anti-fungal properties. If the problem is grubs, then you can use something called beneficial nematodes. You should be able to get them at Barkley's Farm and Ranch (and nursery) on the east side of I-10 in Boerne. You can get corn meal there, too. Corn meal should cost $6.50 or so per 50-pound bag. Beneficial nematodes should cost about $8.50 for a million (to cover 2,000 square feet). Get good instructions on how to use them and use them all at once. Don't try to save them. Use them early for best effect. They multiply fast in your soil.
If you decide to use molasses, and I don't see a reason to yet, get the liquid form. It is a much more efficient use of the product - more bang for the buck. Dried is okay but turns solid on you if you open it and don't put it down all at once. I've used molasses many times with zero effect, but I seem to be in the vocal minority.