green lawn

  • Over Seeding Warm Season Turf

    Most bermuda grasses will go dormant (turn brown) during winter months. The most common seed variety used to over seed bermuda, a warm season grass, is ryegrass, which is a cool season grass. Perennial ryegrass is dark green, does excellent in full sun, tolerates high traffic well, is stress and pest tolerant, and germinates quickly. October is a great month to over seed as the bermuda is slowing it's growth rate but the weather is typically still warm enough for the ryegrass seed to germinate. Daytime temperatures should not be above 70 degrees and nighttime temperatures should not reach above 50 degrees. This usually falls two to four weeks before the first frost of winter. You can also tell it may be time to over seed when your lawn is starting to thin but is still in good condition.

     

     

    When preparing to over seed you will want to mow your lawn at a very low setting, helping to create a loose surface for seeding. Remove all clippings which can easily be done by raking. Next you will want to dethatch your lawn, making sure to remove any and all debris, and then aerate the soil which will allow moisture and oxygen to move through the soil. Next you will spread the seed throughout the lawn using a hand spreader, making sure you apply it evenly and thoroughly. If there are bare areas in your sod you can spread the seed again in that area. Rake and lightly roll the soil in order to cover the seed up to 1/8". Fertilize when over seeding and water well until the over seeded grass is well established, while also being sure not to leave any standing water. Continue to maintain your sod lawn throughout the winter with proper water, mowing and fertilization.

     

     

    It is important to correctly manage your lawn in the spring when the bermuda (warm season) grass is coming out of dormancy. The ryegrass (cool season grass) can compete for moisture, sunlight and nutrients. It is important to stop fertilizing in early spring, but to continue once the bermuda has established itself again. Maintaining a proper low mowing height as the bermuda grass re-establishes will stress the ryegrass, or cool-season turf, aiding in the bermuda grass growth.

     

     

    Maintaining your sod lawn throughout the year, especially during over seeding in the fall and the establishment of your warm season grass in the spring, is vital to the overall health of your lawn. Disease and inability of the bermuda grass to establish without struggle will be more likely if there is not proper maintenance year round. With a little time and effort it is possible to transition smoothly from warm season bermuda grasses to cool season ryegrasses and have a green lawn year round.

  • Turfgrass Disease a 5 Headed Monster

    There are several factors that go into controlling turfgrass disease. The weather, your budget, knowledge and patience all play a role in the management of your sod. Weather plays a huge part in the outcome of your turf, its’ unpredictability and uncontrollable nature can sometimes work against you. Your budget and the expenses of maintaining a nice turfgrass can add up depending on the size and detail of the lawn and landscaping, the complexity of the disease, and how much you are willing or able to spend. Patience must be practiced when waiting for the end result of a pest and disease free lawn, which can sometimes be hard when we wish to see results quickly rather than after a much more likely several weeks. Lastly, more knowledge about maintaining a disease and pest free lawn will of course only help you reach your goals. Your ability to control the outcome of your lawn is much better if you know the conditions that cause the development of diseases, how they affect lawns and how the damage they cause can be controlled.

    Continuous management of your turfgrass is the best way to keep it free of diseases. This includes proper fertilization, correct irrigation and watering, correct mowing height, appropriate maintenance tools, placement in full sun, distance from other plants, and use of disease resistant turf cultivars. It is up to the homeowner to make sure all of these practices are in effect. Even if a homeowner has a landscaping crew maintaining their yard routinely, mowing and irrigation must still be monitored more often. Additionally, correct weed and insect control, aeration and thatch management will increase your chances of a successful lawn.

    It is important you accurately diagnosis your lawn problem before beginning maintenance. Time and money can be wasted if treatment has begun in haste and does not fix the problem. There are several different causes of lawn problems, such as fungus, poor drainage, weather, poor management and maintenance practices, and more. Most diseases will usually affect either the root of the grass or the blade. After taking a close, detailed look, you can usually see if the root has been damaged, or if the problems only occur on shoots.

    Prevention is always preferable over having to cure and maintain in the future. Preventative practices can help prevent a wide array of diseases rather than curing specific diseases as they show up. It is always useful to take advantage of disease resistant varieties. Making sure there is adequate soil aeration and percolation is also important, specifically when preventing root disease. Having continuous wet roots can cause infection and disease, so aerating is critical and seldom overdone. Timing is also an important step when implementing disease control processes, taking into consideration things such as whether the turf is cool or warm-season. Patience, knowledge and effort will go a long way in disease prevention and help aid in decreasing the need for curative and maintenance efforts.

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