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View Full Version : Would this be proper way to overseed this Fall?


ertb
08-27-2009, 10:22 AM
I am trying to get lined up to do a proper overseed for my yard. Is this a good sequence, 1st mow as low as posible,2nd dethatch,3rd remove all debris, 4th aerate, and 5th starter fert. and grass seed. Is there a benefit to renting a overseeder? My yard is a 1.5 acres so it would kill me walking with a 20" overseeder. I have a account at Lesco and plan on using there Transition seed.

White Gardens
08-27-2009, 10:29 AM
dethaching isn't necessary if you aerate, but, it will help ensure a good seed to soil contact.

Rarely do I see a yard that needs de-thatched. Only in newer lawn with major compaction issues. Usually if that's the case then a renovation is going to be the best bet for thatch.

Also, dethaching 1.5 acres is going to be way worse then using a power seeder.

Be careful about mowing as low as possible, you don't want to damage the existing turf by scalping it down. Find a happy medium.

ertb
08-27-2009, 10:42 AM
I forgot to say that my dethatcher is one that is pulled behind the mower.

White Gardens
08-27-2009, 10:51 AM
I forgot to say that my dethatcher is one that is pulled behind the mower.

If it's a tine de-thacher and not a power-rake, then you probably aren't going to get as good of results as you would with a power-rake.

If it's not to time consuming, then it couldn't hurt, but all you'll pull up is dead grass and clippings and not actual thatch.

Got any pics of the lawn ??

ertb
08-27-2009, 11:04 AM
I will post some pics this evening.

Landrus2
08-27-2009, 11:09 AM
Have you thought of renting one of these?

ertb
08-27-2009, 11:19 AM
Here are pics you asked for.

greenskeeper79
08-27-2009, 01:23 PM
Your lawn looks pretty good from the distance of the camera.

I would mow at regular height (you already have a good stand of turf)

Aerify with largest tines possible.

Broadcast (via spreader) your selected grass seed.

5-4-5 Earthworks (or equivelant) fertilizer at 1lb/1000

Starter fert would make the existing turf grow crazy, detrimental to root system.

White Gardens
08-27-2009, 01:32 PM
I agree with Greenskeeper.

The lawn appears to have a good stand of grass, and only one issue I see off the porch/patio.

You should do yourself a favor and get some soil samples done. Go to your local extension and they will more than likely have a kit for you to send them off to a lab.

ertb
08-27-2009, 02:44 PM
From the road my yard looks good,but when you walk through it is 50% smooth crabgrass. I was laid-off at the first of the year so I didn't put any pre-emergent out. With the rain this year I have paid dearly. Also I was thinking about doing all this the 3rd weekend of Sept. Would renting a over seeder be better then dethacthing?

White Gardens
08-27-2009, 02:59 PM
Aerate and then broadcast over-seed with a push spreader. No need to make things more difficult than they are.

Have the soil samples done to know what your Fert levels and PH levels are and you'll be good to go.

The only way I would de-thatch is with a power rake. Take a plug or sample out of the turf and observe the thatch layer and how thick it is. That will be your factor for weather you need to do this or not.

If the thatch is acceptable, then an aeration will be sufficient in keeping thatch under control.

Puttinggreens
08-27-2009, 05:18 PM
I agree with above posts but would like to add.

Instead of putting the energy into dethatching, why not spend extra time aerating more. It is pretty hard to over aerate a lawn. I think the payoff is much better.

Also you have a decent catch of grass already, don't take two steps back by mowing low. Keep it high, aerate the crap out of it, seed, drag and fertilize.

We do two months straight of aeration and seeding every year so I am speaking from experience.

ertb
08-27-2009, 05:46 PM
What do mean by drag? As for the aerating,mine is a pull behind core aerator so I run it all day. Also I always hear it is best to do this around Sept 15 but it can still very hot here. I was thinking the last week of Sept to maybe the middle of Oct. depending when the rain comes so it will be easier to aerate.

Puttinggreens
08-27-2009, 06:08 PM
On open areas like most of your lawn in the pics, we pull a drag mat over the seed and aeration plugs for two reasons.

It knocks some of the seed down into the holes and out of the turf canopy down to the soil. And it helps break up the plugs.

Just don't wait until the plugs dry out and get hard.

You can easily make a drag mat from a small section of chain link fence. Tie something on top of it for a little weight, an old pallet works well. Because of the grain of the fence it will not pull straight but that is OK.

This is just another small step to increase seed to soil contact and therefore germination rates.

greenskeeper79
08-27-2009, 09:38 PM
From the road my yard looks good,but when you walk through it is 50% smooth crabgrass. I was laid-off at the first of the year so I didn't put any pre-emergent out. With the rain this year I have paid dearly. Also I was thinking about doing all this the 3rd weekend of Sept. Would renting a over seeder be better then dethacthing?

An overseeder (slit-seeding) will dethatch to some extent.

White Gardens
08-27-2009, 10:04 PM
What do mean by drag? As for the aerating,mine is a pull behind core aerator so I run it all day. Also I always hear it is best to do this around Sept 15 but it can still very hot here. I was thinking the last week of Sept to maybe the middle of Oct. depending when the rain comes so it will be easier to aerate.

I think your getting great advice hear.

Personally I feel it's been a while I've been part of a thread that has nothing but good input by all who post.

If your grass is a cool season grass (as it appears in the pics) then you'll have to wait until the hot part of the summer is over to aerate.

You can't put a specific date on it, once day-time temps are consistently at 70 or below, and the air "feels" like fall, then it's time to aerate. Cool season grasses thrive, in, well, the cool season.

The way the weather has been here all summer, I could have aerated almost every day as the cool season grasses have been thriving in the wet and cool summer we've had.

baddboygeorge
08-28-2009, 01:52 AM
The ares that are needed an then just powerseed all of the remaining lawn , starter fert an water,, have fun

foreplease
08-28-2009, 08:13 AM
From the road my yard looks good,but when you walk through it is 50% smooth crabgrass. I was laid-off at the first of the year so I didn't put any pre-emergent out.

I'm not sure how much you know - clearly you know more than the average homeowner - but since you mentioned the crabgrass problem I will point out that most crabgrass pre-emergents will also keep your new grass seed from germinating. So, just in case you were thinking "I'll fix this all at once as long as I'm doing it," be sure you do not use a pre-emergent until your new grass seed is up.

Typically, do you get hard frosts in the fall like we do in Michigan? If so, this will take out this year's crabgrass. You have it now though so you are on the right track. Get the lawn to fill in so the crab has less opportunity next spring, then use a pre-emergent next year.

I agree with those who think you have a pretty good stand of grass as it is and should be able to beef it up with the plan you have. I would not power rake or dethatch it. Instead, I would aerate it over and over and over and scratch up the thinnest areas with an iron rake, then seed and drag in. It's going to be a small percentage of the total seed you put down that germinates, but I see that as ok. This is more of an enhancement than complete renovation if I understand your intent. Slit-seeding would greatly improve the total amount that germinates but would be a huge undertaking. If you knock enough holes in it with your aerator it will grow where you get seed in the edges of the holes.

ertb
08-28-2009, 08:49 AM
My plan is to do a heavy overseed this fall. Then on February 1st start the pre-emergent and continue through mid June. I know February is early but where I live with no shade I have seen it germinate very early. Also is Lesco Transition a good grass seed for fescue.

ertb
08-28-2009, 10:22 PM
If I do this overseed by the 2nd week of October I hope I will not have to mow the rest of the year. My question is how early can I put out pre-emergent next year? Everything product says not to put out til the new grass is mowed 3 to 4 times.

White Gardens
08-28-2009, 11:08 PM
If I do this overseed by the 2nd week of October I hope I will not have to mow the rest of the year. My question is how early can I put out pre-emergent next year? Everything product says not to put out til the new grass is mowed 3 to 4 times.

As far as I know, that rule only applies to herbicides.

I've personally always wondered if the mow rule applies to the season and not grass established in the fall, and applications in the spring.

With the established lawn you already have, I wouldn't worry about it. I feel you'll be O.K.

bigslick7878
08-29-2009, 01:47 AM
What height are you mowing at?

It looks like it might be on the low side but I can't really tell.

Stillwater
08-29-2009, 03:35 AM
If I do this overseed by the 2nd week of October I hope I will not have to mow the rest of the year. My question is how early can I put out pre-emergent next year? Everything product says not to put out til the new grass is mowed 3 to 4 times.


you apply crab pre-emergent when the soil at 2" reaches around 50 degrees.
Hears the problem, you are seeding in Oct. So you are going to have a good amount of seed over wintering and waiting to pop. But somewhere around Feb/march you are scheduled to apply pre-emergent and that is going to prevent that desirable seed from germinating. You have a cupple of options, don't apply pre-m and spot spray the weeds (not the greatest idea) or use Tupersan (siduron) as your pre-m that is seed safe and can be mixed with the starter fert.

If you go ahead and apply the standard pre-m in feb/march you will not be pleased with the results

White Gardens
08-29-2009, 07:53 AM
you apply crab pre-emergent when the soil at 2" reaches around 50 degrees.
Hears the problem, you are seeding in Oct. So you are going to have a good amount of seed over wintering and waiting to pop. But somewhere around Feb/march you are scheduled to apply pre-emergent and that is going to prevent that desirable seed from germinating. You have a cupple of options, don't apply pre-m and spot spray the weeds (not the greatest idea) or use Tupersan (siduron) as your pre-m that is seed safe and can be mixed with the starter fert.

If you go ahead and apply the standard pre-m in feb/march you will not be pleased with the results

What about doing the over-seeding, say, now, would he be able to have %80 of the seed germinated by winter ???

I know it would stink to try and water it, instead of doing a natural over-seeding but wouldn't that be the best way to work around the Pre-Em problems ??

Another question ertb, When is the first frost or freeze in your area ??

ertb
08-29-2009, 11:20 AM
Should I try to overseed early and hope I have rain and that a good amount germinates. Because I am putting out pre-emergent next year so I am not fighting crabgrass again. Plus my yard is to big for me to spot spray. I do not watch for soil temps. so rule of thumb when is the best time for pre-emergent for east Tn.

Stillwater
08-29-2009, 11:27 AM
What about doing the over-seeding, say, now, would he be able to have %80 of the seed germinated by winter ???

I know it would stink to try and water it, instead of doing a natural over-seeding but wouldn't that be the best way to work around the Pre-Em problems ??

Another question ertb, When is the first frost or freeze in your area ??


This is what I would try to do.......

Stillwater
08-29-2009, 11:35 AM
Should I try to overseed early and hope I have rain and that a good amount germinates. Because I am putting out pre-emergent next year so I am not fighting crabgrass again. Plus my yard is to big for me to spot spray. I do not watch for soil temps. so rule of thumb when is the best time for pre-emergent for east Tn.

I would try to start earlier if possible, If you dont watch ground temps put the pre-m down when the forsythia blooms. I am not familiar with Tn. weather patterns when is your first frost? do you get snow? do you have any forsythia in your area?

ertb
08-29-2009, 03:15 PM
Great info, so now I will shot for the weekend of Sept 12. Can't next weekend the Vols home opener so I have to see the new coach in action.

White Gardens
08-29-2009, 04:48 PM
I would just watch the weather as much as possible.

As cool of a late summer we are having, I'm sure even you'll be OK to do a seeding temp wise.

Try to look at as many long range forecast for your area. If you see a stretch with a decent amount of rain over a 10 day period, then get your aeration and over-seeding done right before that stretch.

Look at any longer 2 week forecast if you can, that will help ensure that the seed will germinate.

I've had fall seedings almost or totally fail because of dry weather.

Axe, if I remember correctly from my days living in S. Illiniois, I think their first frost is somewhere around the first to second week of Nov. But even then they don't get too many hard freezes and little to no snow.

AnthonyS
09-03-2009, 12:33 PM
Should I try to overseed early and hope I have rain and that a good amount germinates. Because I am putting out pre-emergent next year so I am not fighting crabgrass again. Plus my yard is to big for me to spot spray. I do not watch for soil temps. so rule of thumb when is the best time for pre-emergent for east Tn.

Check this site out. I go by it as a guide when to put down pre emergent.

http://www.greencastonline.com/SoilTempMaps.aspx

wvbrian
09-04-2009, 12:43 PM
I gre up in Knoxville and as a rule of Thumb, I have always overseeded Fescue on Florida Weekend. Seems to give optimum time for germination and root growth before frost. I cant wait to see what Kiffin does with the Vols this year!