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Old 01-28-2010, 08:16 AM
 
50 posts, read 115,199 times
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Hi. Going on my 4th year living here. Originally from the Northeast, so this is the first real property I've had to maintain. I'm learning, slowly.

I have fescue grass, and I think I've only had my lawn seeded once, right after I got here. I wanted to do it this fall, and my lawn needed it badly, but I was unemployed and needed the $$$ for other things.

My question is, I know overseeding is best done in the fall, but since that didn't happen, when is my next window?? Obviously I need to wait until after the snow & cold, but how effective will an early spring (say mid-late Feb/early March) seeding be?? It's my impression that the roots probably won't be strong enough to survive the harsh summer. Is this correct??

Thanks in advance.
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Old 01-28-2010, 08:22 AM
 
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It's not ideal, but it can work. Much of it depends on the weather. How early will it be warm enough for the seeds to germinate? How soon will it get hot? How dry will it be? Seeding in the spring exposes you to more risk that the new grass won't make it - but it's not impossible.

You'll want to get the seed down as early as you can, with proper soil preparation and fertilizer. I don't recall the specs, but grass seed needs soil temperature at a certain level to germinate. Do a little research on what that is and then have your seen ready to go when the weather consistently reaches the right level.

After that, water is the key. You may have to nurse it all the way through the summer, especially during very hot/dry periods.
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Old 01-28-2010, 08:29 AM
 
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Thanks. I kind of figured missing the fall window would mean more babysitting.

Could you recommend a reputable service that would do the the seeding/fertilizing without trying to take a n00b like me for a ride? The problem I have is that I know enough to see when I am being overcharged, but not knowledgeable enough to feel comfortable doing the whole process myself.
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Old 01-28-2010, 08:32 AM
 
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IIRC fescue needs soil temp of around 45F. You can put it on the ground anytime but it won't germinate until then.

Buy a fescue only seed do NOT buy anything with rye in it because the grass will die around May-June ish and look like crap.

I buy my 50# bag from Southern States coop in Louisburg, well worth the drive up there. Great seed, and cheap, around $45 for the 50# bag.

You will be fine putting it down, say around mid-feb or early march. Put some starter fertilizer down and once the seed starts germinating hit it either with corn gluten meal or your choice of crab grass preventer (DO NOT USE WEED AND FEED). You'll need to get the crabgrass preventer down early enough for it to be effective and follow through in say May or June with another app.

Over seed in the fall again and add a starter fertilizer and look for any signs of yellowing. Yellow fescue leaves indicate a lack of nitrogen and you should re-fertilize again if you see that.

This is easily DIY thing and the results will be better if you do it yourself. Everyone who had people come and do the annual fall reseeding in my area had haphazard growth.

And aeration is a waste of $$ IMO. I've never had it done and my lawn looks great, and looked like crap when I first moved in.
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Old 01-28-2010, 08:48 AM
 
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Why wouldn't perennial ryegrass not do well here?Always wondered that.
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Old 01-28-2010, 09:23 AM
 
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Heat just kills it. It might be able to survive if you have sprinklers and water every morning and evening.
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Old 01-28-2010, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Wake Forest, NC
835 posts, read 3,529,361 times
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When growing up in NY had a friends garndmother who had the lawn of the neighborhood and this lady was in her late 60's early 70's at the time and didnt have any help with the lawn besides cutting it.
Her secret was just before it snowed each time(long island so it only usually snowed a couple times a year) should would throw down grass seed and as the snow melted it would be absorbed into the ground and germinate in sprng. I've tried it a couple of times and it may be coincidence but my lawn looked better the follwing spring than usual.
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Old 01-28-2010, 10:12 AM
 
50 posts, read 115,199 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wheelsup View Post
IIRC fescue needs soil temp of around 45F. You can put it on the ground anytime but it won't germinate until then.

Buy a fescue only seed do NOT buy anything with rye in it because the grass will die around May-June ish and look like crap.

I buy my 50# bag from Southern States coop in Louisburg, well worth the drive up there. Great seed, and cheap, around $45 for the 50# bag.

You will be fine putting it down, say around mid-feb or early march. Put some starter fertilizer down and once the seed starts germinating hit it either with corn gluten meal or your choice of crab grass preventer (DO NOT USE WEED AND FEED). You'll need to get the crabgrass preventer down early enough for it to be effective and follow through in say May or June with another app.

Over seed in the fall again and add a starter fertilizer and look for any signs of yellowing. Yellow fescue leaves indicate a lack of nitrogen and you should re-fertilize again if you see that.

This is easily DIY thing and the results will be better if you do it yourself. Everyone who had people come and do the annual fall reseeding in my area had haphazard growth.

And aeration is a waste of $$ IMO. I've never had it done and my lawn looks great, and looked like crap when I first moved in.
Thanks. I might try it myself.
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Old 01-28-2010, 03:58 PM
 
Location: RTP area, NC
1,277 posts, read 3,020,693 times
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I'm going to try the 'throw the seed down' before it snows this weekend. I have some left from the fall overseeding. Lets see if we can get it to germinate where it didn't germinate in the fall! Thanks for the tip. I wonder if the snow packs it into the ground a bit? Worth a try.
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Old 01-28-2010, 05:24 PM
 
Location: Wake Forest, NC
439 posts, read 1,108,616 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dad2jules View Post
When growing up in NY had a friends garndmother who had the lawn of the neighborhood and this lady was in her late 60's early 70's at the time and didnt have any help with the lawn besides cutting it.
Her secret was just before it snowed each time(long island so it only usually snowed a couple times a year) should would throw down grass seed and as the snow melted it would be absorbed into the ground and germinate in sprng. I've tried it a couple of times and it may be coincidence but my lawn looked better the follwing spring than usual.

Yes, this is what I did, seed before it snows and when it starts to melt the seed will mix with the wet soil. Do it tomorrow. Just a little northern secret.
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